Research Point – Odilon Redon’s expressive use of tone.

Odilon Redon’s Two Trees, c.1875 creates the atmosphere of a somewhat sinister wood by the contrast of  tones. The lighter tones on the trunks and branches and in the foreground against the darker pieces create mood and a sense of three dimensions.

This is also apparent in Redon’s The Marsh flower, illustration from Hommage a Goya, 1885. In this lithograph darks and lights together with the strange, suspended face create a dreamlike atmosphere. flower_1

Exercise 4 Shadows and reflected light

This exercise made one aware that there are no lines as such in Nature and that tones define objects.Exercise 4 Shadows and reflected light

Giving a sense of the reflected light was difficult and realise that my attempt was poor but the best I can do at present.

Drawing in sketchbook using different marks to create sense of 3 dimensions.

Like the hatching technique – it reminds me of Edward Ardizzone’s drawings which are full of different kinds of marks that add life and movement to his pictures. For example


Had a go with this technique drawing a stranger in a cafe. diagonal shading to define seated man

Research:  Been looking at the atmospheric drawings by Seurat that were created using extremes of light and shade. In ‘Prints and Drawings, a Pictorial History’ by Gottfried Lindemann there are two reproductions (p.325) that evoke mood with the use of black and white. One  ‘Study for the Grande Jatte’.rande jatte

Exercise 2 Observing shadow using blocks of tone.

Used conte on an A2 roughly sized paper with 2 lit objects with shadows.  Shadows were of different tones as were the objects. Found the conte quite hard work as have a sore shoulder.  However managed over two hours with a break. Negative shapes as interesting as the objects – obviously an abstract element to it all.  Liked the way tooth of paper created a pattern. Exercise 2 Observing shadow using blocks of tone

Research Point. Project 1 : Feeling and Expression. Asked to look at contemporary drawings so chose Frank Auerbach and Leon Kossoff.

I find all Auerbach’s drawings expressive . One of many examples is Plate 101, ‘Head of E.0.W’. 1960  in (Hughes, (1990) ‘Frank Auerbach ‘, Thames and Hudson.  The constant rubbings out and re-drawing that mark Auerbach’s practice and, in this work, the patching of worn out paper, speaks of the past and adds to the strong feeling of a presence. Contrasts of black  and white and the textures created add to the expressive effect.

Leon Kossoff’s drawing after Poussin ‘Bacchanal before a Herm No.3 ‘-Plate 24, p.80, (Kendall,(2000,) ‘Drawn to Painting’, Merrell Publishers, London), is full of movement that creates the expressive atmosphere of Poussin’s painting. The rendering of charcoal, pastel, felt-tip pen and watercolour add to the exuberant mood of Kossoff’s work.

Second try on wrapping paper. Groups of objects using black/brown ink, brush and reed pen

Was rather dismayed at this effort – I find angles so difficult and drawing through things was a challenge. The one good thing was that I managed to fill the portrait sized paper A2 without having to bring in the setting. I have so much to learn must keep going with my sketchbook.2nd try on wrapping paper -groups  of objects

On the oca gmail recommendation of Margaret Davidson’s ‘Contemporary Drawing’ (Watson-Guptill Publications).

Got it and seems useful – lists things important to drawing such as:  Choice of surface, mark making, space, composition, scale, materials, crossing of media boundaries. Uniqueness of drawing as an art form.

Exercise 1 . Expressive lines and marks

This reminded me why I was doing the course – just love making marks.  Associations were fun .

Anger – slap, bang, hurt, pierce, wound, shout, push, pull, violent, explosive, red, engulf.

Calm – float, smooth, still, straight, lapping, water,soft, quiet, gentle, blue.

Joy- bubbly, fizzy, jump, dance, jig, jest, jig, smile, exuberant, reaching out, halo, orange .

Shock- sudden, horror, judder, jerk, grimace, hair-raising, gasp, silent, slump, curve, zig-zag.