Friday, January 30, 2015

Regarding Snow and some drawings

I have been doing more pattern play with pen and ink. Well the pattern starts out in pencil then I ink the lines, erase the pencil and then ink a background. For the above I was working with a dip pen and my new to me acrylic inks, sepia for the outlines and black for the background and fills. I don't think I will add any colored pencil to this one, as I rather like the subtle color changes between the brown and black inks and I think it would get lost if I added more color.

Not sure where I am going with these, for some reason they appeal to me at the moment. Maybe I have been looking at too many architectural details or too many Greek vases. I am not deliberately copying anything but I wouldn't be surprised to find they remind my viewers of something specific.

I do wish I was a bit more consistent in some areas with the fill lines I put in, though I suppose that the unevenness is a sign that was done by hand and not on a computer. This is only 4 inches square done on 400 Strathmore Bristol Smooth paper, using a Japanese nib.

Drawn directly in my sketchbook with Sepia Acrylic Ink and a dip pen. I think I have the perspective slightly off, but otherwise am fairly pleased with how this came out. Shading is done with just line work and almost no crosshatching.

Back to pencil for the drawing above of a columbine flower, bud and leaf from a reference photo I made a few years ago. I love wild columbine with their red and yellow colors. They are such complex flowers and this was a challenge to draw.

I took a bit of liberty with the drawing and upped the contrast in Photoshop. I used a F lead for the drawing and the scan was looking a bit lighter than I wanted. F leads are rather hard, harder than an HB but not as hard as a 2H and I am finding them a good weight to use for my preliminary pen and ink drawings. The graphite erases easily, is light, but doesn't mark the paper. I purchase this lead in Chicago and it is Koh-i-Noor lead which I haven't seen for sale here in the states for quite a few years. Good to see them back.

Regarding snow, I have two photographs today, and the way our weather is looking (lightly snowing today, as I type) there will be more in my future. After weeks of hardly any snow we finally received some. Well a bit more than some, we had full fledged blizzard with high winds (wind gusts approx. 60 mph) and lots of snow, about 2 feet or 24 inches in my area, though it may have been more. The wind blew it around so much that it is a bit hard to judge just how much actually fell. The storm lasted about 24 hours and basically shut down the eastern half of MA for two days, one for the storm and one for dig out. It also appears to have moved us into a different weather pattern, since we are getting some snow today, more tonight/tomorrow and still more is forecast for Monday.

I think that after Monday I will be just as happy if it decides to stop snowing for the rest of the winter, though it doesn't seem likely. For the record I am fine, didn't loose power even once during the storm, and even if I had I have enough supplies on hand to hold up or as actually happened I could even have done food shopping on Wednesday if necessary.

I gather the news folks in other areas of the country made it sound like we were having a natural disaster up here. Well a few communities did suffer greatly from the storm, Nantucket Island lost power, and a couple of coastal communities suffered major damage from Ocean surges and beach erosion. Homes were lost, roads damaged but I don't believe anyone died. Still for most of us here in Eastern MA, Tuesday was a day to stay inside, watch the snow fall, maybe feed the birds and wait for the wind to drop prior to starting the clean up. Travel isn't easy, side streets are still mostly snow covered but things are getting back to normal, more or less.

OK, photos, the one above is of an almost buried headstone in an old cemetery that is just around the corner from me.

This next one shows how the city attempted to clear the sidewalk and then contractors working for a business came along and closed off one end as they cleared the parking lot/driveway for the business. This isn't a very, hmm, artistic photo but it does give the viewer a good idea of just how much snow there is that has to be cleared off of streets and sidewalks. To be honest I think I am going to be walking in the street at least some of the time for quite a while, and yes I will be careful.

That is it for today, per usual comments are welcome.