Saturday, 23 May 2009

Portrait exchange

moly-x portrait, cavi's book

Working on my entry in Cavi's book for the Moly_X Portrait Exchange - you can see process shots in the entry on our group blog :here:

Wednesday, 20 May 2009


I've been wanting to draw the fallen seeds from one of the trees in our garden for the past week or so. I brought a handful of them in on Friday, but wasn't able to draw over the weekend and they withered. On Monday things outside looked like this:

After the shower

so no drawing until the garden dried up a bit. But today I went out and picked a handful of the remaining seeds out of the undergrowth, and finally managed to work on a drawing of them in my large sketchbook:

Drawing seeds

Drawing seeds

Drawing seeds

The result was okay, especially considering that my fine motor control is rather poor at the moment - the arm has been acting up again, and there's a migraine that's been settling in since Monday night.


I used a mechanical pencil and various ink pens for this.

Monday, 18 May 2009

Meeting sketches

All day network meeting at the Hotel Impala in Silkeborg today with schools of Region Midtjylland. I took the oportunity to sketch some of the other participants, while we were all listening to presentations.

Meeting sketches

Meeting sketches

Meeting sketches

Meeting sketches

Ink pen in pocket Moleskine cahier.

Thursday, 14 May 2009


Last night, to counter the frustration of the colour pencil landscape of the day before, I went back to basics and did a simple sketch in ink pen, with only minimal colour added, also using ink pen.


I figured out, in a little more detail, what happens when I try to do something entirely in colour. I love colour. And what I like most about it is all the nuance and detailed variation each colour has, and the way it changes according to light, shade, adjacent colours, reflections, etc. So when I start on colour in my work my attention is immediately concentrated on all the variable aspects of the colour itself, leaving no attention for things like composition, texture and value. Of course this is only possible when I'm using a medium appropriate to reproducing a high level of detailed colour variation (such as colour pencils, aquarelle or acrylics), so when I draw in colour using ink pens I manage to avoid the obsessive attention.

I'm going back to ink.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009


Last night I did some rural sketching for a change. I went down to the end of the road and sketched the view out over the fields towards the old village. I'd only brought along a few pencils to indicate the colours, so most of the colour detail and variation was added later at home. And since I forgot to bring a camera along the colours are largely from memory.

This is what I ended up with last night:

evening landscape

The evening light is not really present, and the fantastic rainbow sky I'd seen to the East is much too pale here, but my wrist, elbow and shoulder were tired, and I decided I'd let it rest for the time being.

Looking at it today I still thought it needed that contrast and encroaching darkness, besides being generally dissatisfied with the whole thing. Somehow I can't manage working with that much colour, which is why I don't paint - I completely lose the overview of what's going on and the colours take control. The result is this kind of too flat, valueless image, swirling with wanton colours.

Going over the image again today I tried to keep a hold of what I was doing and get some depth and dusk into the image, but with only limited success. I tried to work both on the evening lighted landscape and the rainbow sky, which was clearly a mistake - now one doesn't know where to look. I also tried to blend and dampen the sky with a pale grey colour pencil, which turned out to have little pigment grains in the tip that made fine lines all over the sky. Oh well, it's only a drawing in a sketchbook after all, and I'm definitely no painter.

Rainbow sky drawing:

Rainbow Sky

If you can see, with your painterly eye, just where I go so horribly wrong with these, please leave me a comment!

Thursday, 7 May 2009


Today I took a coffee laced sketch-break after work, and sketched the view from Café Baresso on the corner opposite the central railway station. The square is called Banegårdspladsen, as per the title of this entry.

coffee-stop sketch-kit

My café-sketch-stop today included a single soy latte (I'm still learning to drink coffee, and it's new enough to me that I still find these details significant), my large sketchbook diary, and a bunch of pens and pencils. Lining it all up on the table made the whole thing seem like an extra fine treat!

sketching inside banegårdspladsen
sketching the view

Today there was no interested neighbour at my table, just a couple of friends two seats away chatting together. I spent a good deal of time waiting for traffic to get out of the way of the view every time the lights turned red, which meant that I remembered to take photos of my work and the scene in between drawing.

sketchbook diary

My coffee disappeared bit by bit, and the pages filled up. I finished off with a bit of text, then caught my fortuitously 5-minutes-late bus home.

View from Café Baresso

Various coloured pencils, and a few touches of ink, in my large sketchbook diary. The book is starting to fill up nicely, and I am just past the middle spread. It will be fun to have the whole thing filled eventually - my second sketchbook diary, and this one with lots of colour.

Monday, 4 May 2009

Sketching the view

Today I sketched the view towards Hotel Ritz from the café Baresso in Park Allé.

Sketching the Hotel Ritz

I had a 30 minute wait for the bus home, and ordered a soy-capuccino, found a window seat, and proceeded to draw the view.

Sketching the Hotel Ritz

The woman enjoying her own extra hot soy-latte beside me initiated a conversation, and I told her about Urban Sketchers, and gave her one of my little MOO mini cards with the addresses for this blog, Urban Sketchers, and my email on the back. Perhaps she will be reading this entry.

Hotel Ritz

Today I used mostly pencils to draw, and only added a few spots of ink for a change. I find my technique is very different from when I draw in ink. With ink I'm very concentrated and precise. With pencils I just jot things down pretty haphazardly, and then build up with layers.