Here’s the final page of the book. It seemed like it would be fitting to end with a scene set at the end of a long day. This page was first drawn with pencil, then covered with a mix of acrylic mediums to give the paper some protection against buckling as the wax paint from Ceracolors was applied.
Part way through this project I switched to posting larger images and also captioning them directly, as you can see in the gallery below.
One more new medium for this book. For many years now I’ve been holding on to these leftover sheets of Color-aid colored paper from a color theory class, even though I didn’t really think I’d use them again.
One problem though is that these pages are now thicker, with two or three layers all glued together on top of the pages of the book. This makes a little harder to close the book, and it was already having problems with that. It would have better to have done this in the very center, where the curve of the pages wouldn’t have been such a problem, but I didn’t think of using this medium until a few weeks ago.
Next week will be the last page and the end of this project. After that I want to start a new project right away.
This time the scene was made with a few watercolor pencils. I was a little worried that they’d bleed through the paper, but after testing it on a second notebook everything worked fine. The ink is waterproof and most of it was used first for the drawing. Then the pencil was shaded over that like a normal colored pencil, but it’s water-soluble so I used travel brush with clean water to smooth it out and blend a little.
While sketching various possibilities for the next page of this book I started thinking about Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. There is some debate over this, but the method I’m going by for determining the start of the Hebrew year, which was Biblically based on agriculture, says that it started a couple of weeks ago and the feast of Passover has started tonight. It was on the night of the start of Passover that Jesus was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, right before His arrest and then crucifixion the next day.
What I drew while thinking about that is not fully geographically accurate for the area around the garden, which is at the base of the Mount of Olives, but may be similar. It’s mainly just meant to reflect the serenity that I imagined for the place that Jesus was known to go for prayer.
This was drawn with a ball point pen and a variety of pencils with different hardnesses.
When you’re small, even a little waterfall can look like a big challenge. The patient care and encouragement of another can make many obstacles surmountable.
As I drew this I thought about Moses leading his flock while in the land of Midian. Long before that, when Moses first thought it was time to save his people from slavery, he wasn’t ready. He was too impulsive and his people needed more care than he knew how to give. To be properly prepared he needed to first tend to a flock in the wilderness for forty years. There he learned the patience, gentleness, and faithful reliance on God needed to guide an erring flock.
The materials used for this:
One of the wooden pens I carved a long time ago
Daniel Smith walnut ink
Noodler’s black ink
As I drew it became more difficult to control the ink flow because the tip of the pen was wearing down. After quickly resharpening the point with a razor the problem was fixed.
The lamb was referenced from Nicola B and the sheep from Angeline Rijkeboer of Paint my Photo.
One more try at colored pencil, but this’ll probably be the last time I use it in this notebook since the paper is so smooth that it doesn’t pick up the color well. I think I have a good idea of a material to use for next week though.
Here’s how I started, with the notebook clamped open on an old canvas board resting on my desktop easel and the sketch stuck above it using a little modeling clay.
This week I wanted to try a peaceful scene with the idea of botanical gardens in mind. I was in a bit of a rush with travel plans so to get it done today some of the work was done while waiting at a train station and some while on the train at stops. These are Koh-i-Noor colored pencils, mostly the polycolor line, but also a little of one of their woodless progresso greens was used. The photo might not be the best but all I have available right now are dim yellowish lights and some editing was needed.
This is probably the first time I’ve ever drawn the effect of a waterfall underwater. An unexpected challenge was on the left page, which is the back of one of the pages for last week’s linocut block print. Because the ink for that print was thick and dried to create a slight raised surface on top of the paper, the shading on the back of that page was starting to show the pattern of the print. It was like making a rubbing with a paper and crayon on top of an engraving. I solved the problem of shading that page without the print showing through by holding the page up at a corner and shading it in midair while being careful not to poke the pencil through it.
My first finished linocut prints. I got this beginner block printing set maybe a couple of years ago, but it was a little intimidating and I never went through with making a finished product until now. This is what I wanted to do for last week but I needed to practice more.
I was worried there’d only be one chance to get it right, but actually the right side block didn’t have enough ink and had to be pressed a second time. The alignment was slightly off on the second try though, and the ink coverage still isn’t solid, but it’s close enough.
With so little experience I can’t give a tutorial other than to show a few photos of the process, but there’s a very good tutorial from Catherine Cronin as a pdf link on this page over here.
The first block was used for practicing the cuts, inking it, and figuring out a style. There was a little experimentation with different colors of gouache, but the ink was working out the best so that’s all that was used in the final.
Most of this notebook so far has been graphite so it’s time for more experimenting. Something like watercolor might bleed through or ruin the paper, but I sealed the paper first using an acrylic mixture of clear gesso, gel medium, and red and yellow earth fluid acrylic paints. This provided a toned ground to work on and completely prevented any of the watercolor from affecting the other side of the pages, as well as making it easy to lift the watercolor. The only watercolor used was indigo.
Overall the approach seems to have potential, even though this try was a little messy and the acrylic has some uneven streaks of color. The idea for the picture is a last minute one, since I had a hard time thinking of something to make this time. It’s past midnight for me, so I missed the Wednesday posting goal by a little. Maybe next week I’ll make up for that with something special.