Tuesday, 10 November 2009


Photo of the main set up of everything from feathers,
cones, berries, leaves, clocks, boxes of jewellery, pearls,
elephant and lady china and cyclamen pot.

This month's workshop was to bring the regulars out of their comfort zone, so I planned the use of not only the technical pens but dip pens in bottles of coloured inks. I set up a large mixed, jumble sale style collection of objects on top of a large box covered with interesting cloth.

Here are some of the views for members to select their main compositions
for the main afternoon piece of art work.

In the morning we practiced using different pen nibs and thickness technical pens. Firstly, dividing a watercolour page of hot press smooth paper into two, then sketching an object of choice with the different pens. One was to be coloured with inks using both brushes and pen nibs creating linear and other marks for texture to bring out specific areas of detail.

Here are some samples:

From their choices, it would seem my love of natural history has passed on to my members, as there were many china statues, broaches, boxes that were not chosen initially.
By the time we had finished a lunch break, I had set up the main centre piece for each member to move around the room and choose a viewpoint selecting around 3 objects for their individual composition. Then came the rub !!! I requested them to place each object onto their watercolour pad by use of coloured ink block areas with no prior drawing or penwork. This way, when pen was added I hoped the work would look more spontaeous and the colours bleeding outside the linear marks.

Here are some works in progress and as yet without a pen mark having been made and note the use of large brushes for the washes:

I did not realise how much the cyclamen pot rose above everything else dominating each piece of work from all angles .. but some chose to add elephants, some had clocks and unfortunately our young teenager's main piece was not photographed as she worked on the lady and round red/gold jewellery box.

Good day together and lots of comments of 'you are making us think'!! and 'how interesting to work so differently from the usual pencil sketch and watercolour layers'. That was the idea!!!


RHCarpenter said...

You are definitely pushing them and that's a good thing :)

Vicki Greene said...

Oh, how I would have liked to have been a part of this class. Your students did a great job with your terrific idea.

debwardart said...

Joan, you are certainly talented in so many areas. What a wonderful drawing exercise!

Margaret Ann said...

These are beautiful...I cringed at the words"dip pen" as I personally tend to be a bit careless...but that is how one learns... I must set aside time some day and push myself!!! :)