Pencils: Pentel Graph Gear 500 3mm with 2H lead, Eberhard Faber Design Drawing 6B pencil, Conté a Paris white pastel pencil
Paper: Strathmore 400 series toned gray 80 lb
4.75″ x 2.75″
I think I got a little carried away with the white, but I’m still getting used to this kind of drawing.
Here’s another iPad drawing. For both this and the last drawing I posted I used Tayasui Sketches, plus a little contrast adjustment after transferring it to my laptop. I’m still very busy, but I’ve managed to get this and a few drawings done that I’ll scan later.
Lately I’ve been experimenting with grinding various stones into powder and then making watercolor from that. Some of the stones I found myself but here’s two that I bought.
I’ve had this tiny piece of lapis lazuli for many years. The actual process of extracting lazurite from this is more than just hitting it with a hammer. From what I’ve read it involves oils and clay that’s used to remove impurities like pyrite and clear minerals, but I don’t have all the needed materials and my piece is so small that there wouldn’t be enough pure pigment for me to make paint. Therefor the impurities are going to stay, even if only to add some bulk. Grinding this was surprisingly easy.
The paint I made from it was a gentle smokey blue that’s very granulating. You can’t see it in the photo but there’s little glints of sparkle from the pyrite. If it looks a little greenish it might be because the water I was using had already been used for other paints and needed to be changed. Maybe the impurities are a factor too.
That little stone ended up being just enough for a full pan of watercolor. Some of the paint swatches it’s sitting on are from store bought tubes and some I made myself from dry pigment I bought, but there’s a few in the top right corner that were made from stones I found. These swatches are all from me trying to figure out which colors I want to include in my new travel case.
This is red jasper that I mail ordered. It was completely different to grind because it was so much harder. The card that came with it said it was a hardness of 6.7. I don’t know the hardness of any of the other stones I’ve found but none were as hard to grind at this one.
The pigment was a little duller than the stone itself. A lot of pigments become lighter and duller as they’re ground more finely. The lapis lazuli was the same way.
Here’s the finished red jasper paint. It’s not as red as I was originally hoping, more of a brown, and still a little gritty. It has a nice granulation though and a good amount of darkness and opacity to the paint at full strength. Maybe someday I’ll order some yellow jasper.
There’s a lot of other stones that I’ve tried turning into paint and I still have more to experiment with, but I thought these were two of the more successful ones.
Black gouache on canvas, 5″x7″
The rocks are based on a painting that’s in my book of Korean landscape paintings, and the waterfall is based on some waterfalls that I saw in Japanese woodblock prints, but the composition I just made as I went. Until I had painted a few strokes and began shading what eventually became one of the rocks I wasn’t sure what I was going to be painting at first.
This was another experiment with using watermedia on a canvas board. I didn’t want too much canvas texture though so for this I made a mix of Golden fiber paste and some acrylic gel medium and covered the whole canvas evenly with a large spatula shaped like something you’d flip tiny burgers with. When that was dry I did a second coat with a mix of more fiber paste, some acrylic impasto medium, and some white acrylic paint because the paste wasn’t as white as I’d want. That got it acceptably smooth and cleanly white. It wasn’t until that was all dry that I started painting.
For my brush I used a size 4 round Textura synthetic brush from Raphaël. The bristles are very stiff and it’s made for thick acrylic paints and mediums. It even has “HEAVY BODY” written right on the brush. With this brush I was able to scrub the gouache into place using dry brush techniques for most of it. I was going to also use white gouache at first but I decided against it early on because I wouldn’t have gotten the same semi transparent greys.
Oil on linen, 5″x7″
This is based on a watercolor painting from Joseph Turner. I had started this a while back but didn’t get around to uploading it here until now. A big reason for making this was to try out some of the paints that I had just gotten at the time, mostly from Gamblin and I think Old Holland. They all worked out really well. I don’t remember every paint I was trying on this, but I know there was portland grey and burnt umber from Gamblin. The yellow was most likely mars yellow from Old Holland.