Because I’m travelling at the moment I haven’t been able to blog consistently, but I have been keeping up with Marc Taro Holmes’ #30x30directwatercolor2018 challenge.
Here is the first half of my sketches… keep scrolling and I will share a few thoughts at the end.
A few thoughts:
Because I’m travelling, I’m sketching a lot – six days a week – so this challenge is a lot easier for me at the moment than it would have been if I had been at home. However I have to make a conscious decision to create a paint-only sketch each day since it is not my normal way of working.
I’ve had to strongly resist adding lines at times. In fact, I started numerous sketches with the intention of being a paint-only piece but either the time constraints (not a lot of time), the amount of water I was using in my washes (too much water) or the subject matter (too complex) meant that I had to cave in and use my pen. I have realised more clearly the benefits of mixing paint and line – it’s the fastest and most flexible way to sketch (for me anyway).
My general approach is to do at least 80% of the sketch in the first pass as I don’t want to have to wait for paint to dry. I then add some addition colour for darker areas or a ‘pastier’ wash for the details. But to do this the first pass needs to be almost dry so I have been starting the areas that need a second layer. And in addition to this, I like leaving a lot of white space. The side view of Florence Duomo is a good example of this – I did the full building in one pass, starting with the dome, and then at the end came back and added another layer to the shady side of the dome.
Subject matter: it is much easier to sketch simple subjects – objects such as coffee cups, food, and windows. Because of the bad weather in Scotland and/or being with family I’m ‘copping out’ a little and sketching my coffee/tea a lot. This is easy for me to fit in everyday so not much of a challenge. So I am hoping that I will take more risks in the second half of the month.
Are you doing the challenge? How is it going?