Life Drawing Session on 29/09/11

As a child I was given a set of watercolour pencils which I never really got the hang of but always wished I could. Subsequently, when I started drawing again I wanted to try them. Luckily, WH Smith had a fantastic ‘back to school’ offer with 60% off, so I got a 36 pencil set for £7.00!!! I also purchased three brush pens that you can fill the barrels with water, this means you can apply the water to the pencils with ease and accuracy.

Three Minute Poses

We started as normal with some three minute poses which went rather well for me as I actually got most of the figure in and with okay proportion. It is true that you speed up with practice! As the three minute and some medium length poses were drawn in pencil I am still having trouble putting them up. However Nick had done a very good job here darkening the pencil lines.

For the long pose at the end of the session I had time to colour and water wash my picture. I was very pleased with how easy to use and blend the pencils were. However I noted it was better to apply the two / three etc. colours to the paper first and then add the water to achieve the desired colour. The water brush pens also proved a fantastic find as it was very convenient to use and then you just squeezed through more water to wash them through for the next area. My only irritation regarding my final picture is I cut off the hoop as I ran out of page – I wish I had started 2cm over!!

A not altogether sucessful follow up…

Following how pleased I was with the my long pastel in the last post, I decided at the next session to practice this medium again. However, this proved not to be one of my best efforts. I started on some black sugar paper as I didn’t have any pastel paper to hand, however this did not work as the pastel just didn’t stick. Therefore, ten minutes in I had to get some proper paper… After that, I tried to remember my previous lessons and try to be messy and build up the image in layers. However it didn’t seem to work and I ended up with a rather smudgy mess which I then outlined to give a bit of cohesiveness. I also found it difficult to give the depth of tone and detail for this picture. Although, friends have subsequently suggested that I try some pastel pencils to put in details. Hopefully I will have another go soon!

N.B.  – Also in this session, I did my short and medium poses in pencil as normal. We are having some difficultly photographing the pencil drawings as they are very light on the page. When we have sorted this I will put up my sketchbook and do a general pencil post.


Pastels – Experimental Mondays.

It has been a long while since I posted but I have been either unable to attend or I have been modelling! We have also been on holiday so I have been very distracted!

First Ten Minute

This experimental evening was the first time I have ever used pastels. I have not been particularly drawn to them in the past as I felt I would not be able to get the same amount of detail in. However it was fun to try! We started with some short ten minute poses, I found this quite difficult as you are encouraged to be messy and rub out the pastel and draw over the top – not always ‘colouring in between the lines’ which I seem to like! I also found the proportion difficult to render accurately – this was probably due to trying to concentrate on too many new things at once so all my pictures seem a bit off to me. During the coffee break it was said that my first ten minute was my best as it is the most ‘free’ of my short poses.

Later on, with some encouragement from Laura and Shelley to get messy and draw all over the page we started on the final long pose. I found this the best pose of the night as it gave me time to relax into the drawing. Of all of my pastels, I am most pleased with this one as it is relatively in proportion and it sort of has a face – something I found very difficult to draw in with any detail!

Final Fifty Minute Pose

Art Nouveau Drawings

Last Monday we had an experimental session with the theme Art Nouveau. This was the first time I had experienced this theme during life drawing, however I was vaguely familiar with some of the more famous images.

It started with the usual three minute poses, three fifteen minute poses and then finally two twenty-five minute poses. Unusually, the poses up to the two twenty-five minutes were clothed. This made a nice change for me as it was possible to see if I had learned anything about drawing clothing from the background fabric I like to fill in!

Third fifteen minute pose.

As normal, I completed my drawings in pencil, although we were encouraged to use pen and ink, I found that I was not confident enough to jump right in – especially without the ability to rub out! I can’t help feeling that this is my OCD neatness coming to the fore!! Although seeing how strong the images can look when outlined in pen, I decided to outline the pencil when I got home and could take a little more time on it. Also, remembering the lovely red flowers in Frankie’s hair, I decided to accent the flowers, belt and the roses positioned in some of the poses, in red. I had forgotten how nice felt-tips are! I have to admit, I am really quite pleased with the outcome of all the images as they seem bright and striking to me.

For my final twenty-five minute pose I decided to work on my colouring success and looked up patterns for a border in Frankie’s kindly lent Art Nouveau book, and google. I think that surrounding the figure in black has worked quite well – it is something I have seen Nick do a few times in the last few weeks and I have been struck each time by the way it seems to push the figure out at the viewer. Hence, I finally decided to try it out for myself. In the end, I think that the border has a slightly Indian art vibe by accident due to the sculpted patterned edging. Regardless of the deviation from the theme, I am pleased with how the pattern encompasses the figure.


Firstly, I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new Blog – Drawn Together!

This is the first time I have started a blog as the idea has never appealed to me before now. However, I was persuaded by Nick – it does seem a particularly good way to compile and share our pictures and my other craft projects! I hope that it may also prove interesting to someone else.

Arts and crafts has always been something I have enjoyed. Some of my earliest memories are of drawing and I have always loved to glue stuff! However, in my late teens I rather lost touch with drawing etc. as there were too many other pressures. It is great to now have that bit of extra spare time to donate to a hobby I love and can improve at. I have also found it wonderful to be able to share this hobby with Nick and be able to do it together.

As Nick has already said most of the images added will be in conjunction with a life drawing sessions we regularly attend and enjoy as a means to improving our drawing. These sessions have recently started running experimental workshops which give you an opportunity to try different techniques – I hope I will find other art mediums that appeal to me! I also like to make other craft projects such as papier-mâché, acrylic painting, wax sculpture* and jewellery* – beads and ribbon (* only just started!). Next weekend we are attending a oil painting session so we will be able to discuss how it went. I recently saw some fantastic images of silk painting which I would love to try, I will write about that in the near future when I have got the materials! Basically, you can see we have a lot of ideas and plans for future art projects! I hope that putting it out on the internet will maybe encourage others to try something new or just find our triumphs or failures entertaining!