GS Sketches Apr 2012

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GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby gpathy » Wed Apr 11, 2012 7:26 am

Off goes the armchair sketcher.... travelling both in space and time..

This magnificent temple in the ancient Chola capital city of Thanjavur, is known as the Big Temple (Periya Kovil in Tamil), built in the 11th century, it is the tallest temple of its kind in the world (216 ft). The kalasam (mast head) alone weighs 50 tons. the entire temple it is said, used about 160,000 tons of hard granite. There is still no clear agreement, on how these massive stones were quarried, cut, moved and placed at such heights, not to mention the structure, the pillars, levels and the thousands of intricate sculptures. More details..

My little sketch doing very little justice to its scale and grandeur.
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bigtemple_2012_small.jpg
Big Temple Thanjavur
bigtemple_2012_small.jpg (84.1 KiB) Viewed 1180 times
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby RajeshS » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:11 am

Wow - a very very good architectural sketch GS. It's a very very complex subject - very well done

I've never ever tried an architectural sketch with such intricate details -- I understand that the skill lies in being able to simplify those intricate details. Like you did on the "kalasam" - that is the type I'm referring to - I've just not yet tackled that.

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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby mdmattin » Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:59 am

Nice work, GS - it really conveys the massive structure and the intricacy of the decorations. The linear perspective and overlapping forms give it strong feeling of receding in space - you even get as sense of atmospheric perspective, which is no mean feat in pen and ink!
What size is your drawing?
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby LarryMarshall » Thu Apr 12, 2012 3:29 am

Wonderful, GS. I do hope to someday gain the facility you have for deciding how and what to simplify when doing such complex structures.
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby Miatagrrl » Thu Apr 12, 2012 4:18 am

Amazing, GS! I am in awe. How long did you work on this piece? People tell me I have fortitude for tackling stuff like 100 self-portraits, but I surely don't have the stamina to make a single drawing like this. But your drawings are an inspiration.
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby gpathy » Thu Apr 12, 2012 7:40 am

Thank you all for your generous comments :)

Not sure if I was conscious of it, but yeah, 'simplifying' and 'clarifying'.. two 'techniques' that I want to learn and employ. basically need to mentally break these down into simple geometric forms. Ideally an underlying with pencil, and then rendering in pen might result in a better picture.. but as usual my unplanned and ad hoc work means only one shot at it :)

The size is small.. 7" x 6 ". I used a Wality fountain pen for this (A Japanese 'F').I rolled the pen and used the underside of the nib to tone down a bit.

While I was bit lost in the details I realized the lack of atmospheric perspective...so it was an after thought. I guess one needs to do these more often to actually be able to eventually apply those consciously. Also as you see, the perspective is off at times.. the price you pay for not using a ruler, or establishing explicit VPs !

It probably took me an Hour or so. Portraits are very different, and to do a 100 'different' ones is certainly a challenge!. This piece, though contains enough variations, does gets a bit repetitive, so you get some mechanical freedom :).
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby RajeshS » Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:25 am

wow - you did this directly in pen!!! Very confident sketch then!

And 1 hour for this is extremely good times!

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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby nelchee » Sat Apr 14, 2012 5:40 pm

This is amazing, only pen, and so much detail in it, and it only took you an hour - man, I'm so slow! :D
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby gpathy » Sun Apr 15, 2012 3:30 pm

Thank you Rajesh and Nela! I think it was the relatively shorter time that left this in a more or less 'sketch'y state.

Someday I do want to visit this place, and soak in the splendor and take my time to draw the details at the pace it deserves!
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby malissa18 » Fri Apr 20, 2012 3:14 am

GS - you never cease to amaze me. This one of your best, I think. getting the perspective to look accurate must have been challenging!
The pen should, as it were, walk slowly over the ground, and you should be able at any moment to stop it, or to turn it in any other direction, like a well-managed horse.

Ruskin, John.
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby bradleytwilson99 » Sat Apr 21, 2012 11:02 am

Very nice, indeed. I am glad that you did not use a ruler. I would rather see the perspective off a little bit here and there than have it look more like an "architectural rendering". For me, it is often the visible "missteps" or "mistakes" that make a sketch so much more appealing. What great attention to all that detail, yet he whole structure is so solid.
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby gpathy » Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:55 pm

Malissa, thank you for your comments, I enjoyed doing this, as much as you all seem to enjoy looking at it :)

Bradley, thanks for your observation. I tend to agree with you. Glad it came out within the acceptable range . its so much fun doing it free hand, and I am glad my T- square, set squares and their friends are gathering dust :)
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Re: GS Sketches Apr 2012

Postby gpathy » Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:07 am

A Follow up .. After drawing this picture from a reference, I was inspired to actually visit this place. The summer was hotter than usual, but the visit to the Ancient capital of Tanjavur was totally worth it. You see a granite temple almost every where.. thousands of such temples all more than a thousand years old can be found in and around the region. I stuck to a few.. and primarily this Brahadeeswara Temple. The pinnacle of Indian Temple architecture. I spent a few hours adoring this beauty. It was scorching hot, and one has to walk barefoot! The entire complex is lined with a covered structure running along the huge walls, which provided temporary relief. The mammoth size was totally awe-inspiring when I saw it in real. The halls inside the temple had tremendously high ceilings, with very tall granite columns so precisely cut. It was so cool inside the temple. However, the heat was too much for me to sit down and draw though! So I had to settle down for the clicks from my camera.

I decided that I need to come back with a plan and with right timing to enjoy this and so many other grand structures in the region. and maybe plan it right for a sketching tour!

If you want to enjoy it virtually, you can do it here.. http://www.view360.in/virtualtour/thanjavur/
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