very strict art class


A2, white conte crayon on black paper

My last monochrome exercise in my weekly art class. Next week I get to use colour!

This done from a photograph with the added challenge of adjusting the light values of the original photo – rather like with the previous cow exercise – I’m learning to add something, to make the subject my own.

I’ve learnt a great deal in these strict art classes and if I look back at my first exercises eight months ago I can see how much confidence I’ve gained. Initially my marks were tentative, regular, they weren’t saying much.  I’m more free now (though still have some way to go!) and able to put more emotion in to those marks. Even within this one drawing I can see the difference between the tentative first marks and the ones made in the past 30 minutes of drawing.

Specifically I learnt:

  • don’t be tempted to assume that leaving areas black will give more atmosphere – when I added the gentlest of marks in to the black it created more interest – there IS something going on in that dense shadow.


  • don’t be tempted to do a perfect drawing before getting going with the tonal work – this is more about ‘sculpting’ an image out of the black – and that’s where the joy comes too. I was surprised at how much easier this was that I was expecting – and how little I used a rubber – I think just once to get rid of an early line of placement.




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