Friday, 12 April 2013


Testing times, in more ways than one.

David (bless him) has been struck down by a very nasty tummy bug - started Tuesday just after we got home from taking his Mum for a check-up following her recent stroke.  I think it came on too soon to be connected with that hospital visit.   Yesterday he thought he was better ... but not so .... he's lost 10lbs  since Tuesday but this isn't a recommended weight loss plan!!     He is feeling very sorry for himself but these things have to run their course and at least he hasn't passed it to me (so far)  firmly crossing fingers here!

Whilst he has been resting/sleeping I've been 'playing'.    I'm starting work on another commission tomorrow but just wanted to try some different papers and pencils in the meantime.   I tend to use pastels for most of my commissions these days so its quite challenging to go back to coloured pencils and experiment when I don't have time constraints

Had another play with yesterday's Yorkie...  I'm disappointed with the outcome but David likes it, so for the moment it's escaped the bin.    I need to get a decent can of fixative so I can have another session on those ears.  My W&N fixative is too erratic and keeps spitting at inappropriate moments.

At the moment I've probably reached the maximum number of layers of cp but I am impressed with the Derwent paper.   I even tried scratching out some fine hairs with a scalpel and the paper was very accommodating!

So this is 'Kissy'    -   sorry, but I didn't name her :-)

Today's 'practice piece' was an experiment on black paper.  I'm using different pencils to my normal ones but didn't want to use an expensive piece of black sanded paper.   I've used Black Canson paper as I have a large pad which hasn't been used since I found that it isn't great for lightfastness so I can't use it for commissions.     Unfortunately, it also doesn't hold many layers of cps so is similar to drafting film to work on.

This took me about 5 hours today (drawing time) and another hour trying to photograph it as my wonderful camera insists it knows better than me.   It doesn't recognise black backgrounds so we've had a weird and wonderful assortment of photos .... the most true (for colour) was taken with flash, but then we got glare from the wax in the pencils

like this ...

so I took the best of a bad bunch of photos and tweaked it in PaintNet so this is pretty accurate

working on black support is always interesting as colours change dramatically ....

Just another small picture (approx A4) but an interesting experiment with new pencils and different supports.

Back to 'proper work' tomorrow.

Have a great weekend everybody


Jo said...

That Yorkie's ears really stand out and I love the black background dog. You really are super with eyes. So, I might add, is Mike.


Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

the fur on both looks great :D
i love black paper, but it can be a huge pain to get either a good scan or photo with it

Jan/ said...

Wonderful, Sue! I especially like the dog on black paper as I know how difficult that is to do.

Polly Birchall said...

You're having fun painting 'masterpieces' then? The dog I can almost hear him panting! Your work on the black paper looks stunning. I am impressed by the tones you have managed to achieve. Have a happy and healthy weekend!

Peggy said...

Glad you didn't bin the first one!
I love them both! Fabulous work on the fur and eyes :)