Leonardo da Vinci had an uncanny ability to observe nature and record it. His precise illustration of the subject with small explanatory notes was remarkable. Another artist whose illustrations of nature that I admire is Albrecht Durer.
Star of Bethlehem in red chalk, pen and ink by Leonardo.
Turf in watercolour by Albrecht Durer.
Finding a subject.
It’s difficult to decide. My favourite drawing in option two was of the tomatoes in ink. I need to work on something which will be a bit more challenging and I can experiment with different mediums. I forgot to put in the variety of subjects I have been working on, so they are at the bottom. Please scroll down.
I have been drawing tulips. Whilst they are beautiful it’s tricky to use them as a subject to use for observation. The flowers keep changing every minute. The petals open with the movement of the sun and they all off too quickly. The sunflower keeps changing too. Seed heads not only remain as they are for very long, I can see myself working on them and experimenting in mixed media, so I will work on them.
Some poppy and honesty seed heads
A close up of honesty seed heads in the sun and it’s plant further down.
Different angles in Different media.
At the moment the seeds are either on a white napkin on the table or supported by a jar. I am not drawing the jar or the napkin. I thought about putting them in an organic support such as wrapping the stalks in brown paper to make them look like a bouquet arrangement, but did not like the look of it. these are in HB pencils :
The one above one is with red chalk and Derwent sketching pencil.
This one is a view with a longer stem. I have used Derwent graphite block in Prussian blue. I have tried to depict the seeds at different angles. The drawing below is on an a3 cartridge paper with water colours.
This one is on an A4 300gsm watercolour paper with watercolours.
A sketch with the branch at a diagonal in Quink drawn with a bamboo pen.
The poppy seed heads viewed from above. This is in charcoal. The heads were lifted out with putty eraser.
Draw and select.
I forgot to put in my drawings of various subjects, and when I try to insert photos in the middle, it doesn’t seem to work. I promised myself not to spend more than two hours on each. I once spent a record two weeks on a pencil drawing of lilies in a vase, working everyday till midnight! My sketchbook I started for this assignment is an A4 and the paper is not strong enough to hold various medium so I have done these studies on separate sheets of paper.
A bowl of fruit on A2 cartridge paper in oil pastels.
Different fruit, again in oils pastels
This is on an A3 medium grain paper
The fruit goes off very quickly and you just have to eat it or bin it! much as I love tulips, they are tricky to work with. Here is an abandoned water colour. The petals kept opening and the flower changed every few minutes. This tulip is yellow with red edges and middle.
A plate of pears, forelle and packhams, on A2 in charcoal.
Pointed sweet peppers on a bamboo board in pencil colours, A3 cartridge paper. I left most of the background unfinished – my two hours were up.
While still thinking about subjects, my eyes fell on a potted sunflower on the window sill. Lots of images and potential came to mind. This is with ink pen and Inktense pencils and a blue wash, on A3 300gsm water colour paper. I ran out of time and did not complete the leaves, they are looking pale and patchy.