Brian's Sketches

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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Andre Jute » Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:10 am

brianvds wrote:
Andre Jute wrote:Love your glassware. Off to make a Marmite and banana sammie.


Thanks. I rather enjoy drawing and painting glass. It is easier than it looks, but people don't know that, so it is an easy way to knock their socks off. :-)

I didn't know one could combine Marmite and banana! Now unlike those poor Americans, I would agree that Marmite is the food of the gods. But with banana? Strange combination. My preference is for plain old Marmite on toast. I once served it to American friends of mine. I'm not sure they ever forgave me. :-)


I and some other people introduced an American writer to Marmite. Nobody thought to tell her that you spread the stuff thinly. She started out eating it with a spoon, and soon had a regular delivery from an Amazon affiliated grocer, UD$90 every month. Er, I thought there was a single thread on it but Marmite squeezed into a lot of threads on ROBUST, the forum where it happened. https://www.goodreads.com/group/comment ... bust?utf8=✓&q=Marmite&commit=search. It'll take a week of reading to find the precise point where that startling detail came out.
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Alitogata » Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:27 am

Marmite with banana! :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: Bliah!
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:17 pm

RajeshS wrote:Hi Brian,

The Marmite bottle and egg!!!

You have a great control on colors! And form too.

Excellent art

Rajesh


Thanks! I find eggs rather terrifying to paint. But very satisfactory on those occasions where they work out. :-)
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Mon Jan 01, 2018 12:27 pm

A quick and somewhat random beginning-of-the-year sketch. I couldn't get the old geezer to sit for me so I cheated and used a photo reference:

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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Alitogata » Mon Jan 01, 2018 12:38 pm

That's really good..! Photos are very good way to improve your sketching skills on portraits... I mean practising with photos and then attack the real thing! :)
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Mon Jan 01, 2018 1:43 pm

Alitogata wrote:That's really good..! Photos are very good way to improve your sketching skills on portraits... I mean practising with photos and then attack the real thing! :)


Thanks. :-)
Reference photos are always a bit terrifying. I kind of prefer sketching portraits from life; for some reason I actually find it easier to capture a likeness that way. But the world isn't exactly overflowing with willing models, so mostly I have to use photos. I don't really like drawing portraits anyway, but it is a good way to exercise the eye.
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Sun Jan 07, 2018 3:50 pm

Some of my latest adventures. An oil; not my most successful, though it's growing on me:

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Not far from where I live there is a place where mini train enthusiasts offer rides. There is a whole big terrain with the tracks, areas for picnic, and a pond where miniature boat enthusiasts come to sail their remote control boats. This particular train is a diesel model, but there are also steam ones with genuine steam-driven engines:

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As you can imagine, kids love it. Anyway, it's also a nice place to sketch people going about their business, because they are mostly so focused on the trains they don't really notice you. I have become terribly rusty though. I can swear I was better than this...

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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:29 am

And one more:

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Oil on board, 15 x 20 cm (= 6 x 8 inches).

As I noted before, I sometimes work from reference photos. But I don't really like it. I do so because I can't afford to keep on buying fresh fruit and vegetables, so when I do, I take a bunch of photos for later use. But this sketch just showed me again why it is so much more satisfying to work from life. Here's my setup:

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Simple, cobbled-together shadow box on a cutting board, on a small platform, on my desk. But see how the camera gets the colors all wrong: some parts to bright, others underexposed, the tomato's rich colors all pale, etc. Had I worked from this photo the painting would be just as flat, or I would have to keep on compensating for it the whole time.

I am looking around for fake, but reasonably real-looking, fruits and vegetables to try out in still life setups. :-)
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Andre Jute » Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:32 pm

Check the yellow pages of suppliers to florists and craft flower arrangers: they sell artificial fruit and veg and silk flowers, etc.
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Wed Jan 10, 2018 2:17 pm

Andre Jute wrote:Check the yellow pages of suppliers to florists and craft flower arrangers: they sell artificial fruit and veg and silk flowers, etc.


Yeah, this will be a new project, though perhaps not a desperately urgent one. But I'll keep an eye out; given the style I work in, artificial fruit and veg ought to work. Apparently Cezanne very frequently used paper flowers.

I actually saw some plastic peppers at the local China Mall yesterday, but they looked a bit too plastic to my liking. One can get hold of quite realistic looking ones. They are expensive, but once you have a little collection you can reuse them in endless new combinations. It'e one of the things I like so much about still life: there is just no end to the possibilities for using even a smallish collection of objects over and over. I can begin to see why Morandi could lock himself away with his collection of bottles and make a career out of it. Not that I particularly like his work as such, but I like the philosophy. :-)
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:38 pm

Cattle egret. Ballpoint pen with colored pencil:

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Combining ballpoint and colored pencil is a favorite sketching medium for me, but with both they are a horror to photograph. At least with my little point and shoot, the colors simply won't reproduce correctly; the colored pencil tends to come out too pale, and the black ballpoint lines acquire a reddish tinge. No amount of cleanup in Gimp will completely solve either problem. I'll try again in better light and see if that works...
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Andre Jute » Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:26 am

Super sketch. I wouldn't worry too much about the shortcomings of your camera. As long as the colors stand well in relation to each other, we'll get the idea -- and it forces you to have a strong line, a good thing!
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:16 am

Andre Jute wrote:Super sketch. I wouldn't worry too much about the shortcomings of your camera. As long as the colors stand well in relation to each other, we'll get the idea -- and it forces you to have a strong line, a good thing!


Thanks for the vote of confidence. I may just make a bazillion more such bird sketches - I'm thinking of doing a children's book on common birds, with such informal sketches as illustrations. But for such a purpose they'll have to be properly scanned...
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby Andre Jute » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:30 am

brianvds wrote:I may just make a bazillion more such bird sketches - I'm thinking of doing a children's book on common birds, with such informal sketches as illustrations. But for such a purpose they'll have to be properly scanned...


Make the sketches first, write the book, interest a publisher, and you won't have to worry about digitizing the sketches -- the publisher will pay to have it done professionally.
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Re: Brian's Sketches

Postby brianvds » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:35 am

Andre Jute wrote:
brianvds wrote:I may just make a bazillion more such bird sketches - I'm thinking of doing a children's book on common birds, with such informal sketches as illustrations. But for such a purpose they'll have to be properly scanned...


Make the sketches first, write the book, interest a publisher, and you won't have to worry about digitizing the sketches -- the publisher will pay to have it done professionally.


I go the self-published way with the writing stuff. It has lots of advantages, but one does have to look after all the technical bits by oneself.
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