I normally don’t post works in progress. What if I mess it up before I’m done? But I’m posting this for a few reasons. I want to be accountable for finishing this piece—whatever the result. Plus, I’m just excited to share it!
This project has an interesting story (to me, anyway). It did not start out as a mixed media piece. But at some point, for no particular reason I can think of, I decided to throw brush pen ON TOP of my already-layered colored pencil.
My first thought was that I had ruined the piece; it looked funny and flat and the brush pen marks were visible. But then I realized that, in fact, I had made it better. I had given it more boldness and personality. I had turned it into something entirely different. And that affected how I approached the rest of the piece.
I approached it with an open mind, and the desire to let go and have fun. I also realized that I could layer and blend the colored pencils and the brush pen to achieve the realism and dimension that I strive for in my work.
It all started here:
Now, I NEVER try to draw groups of people. That was part of the challenge of this piece—I wanted to draw something hard. I was happy with how the initial part of the sketch came out:
I took a colored pencil picture with only one layer in one shade laid down, planning to capture the layering process:
Then, along came the brush pen. BAM, vividness and personality! I love how intense the colors became:
I continued using a combination of colored pencil and brush pen, and started to tackle those little people head-on. I decided to leave them more as suggestions than full-on realistic portraits, and I think that works fine in this case. I’m also really happy with the depth I achieved on the awnings and umbrellas:
I love the how the suggested cobblestones turned out here and, so far, I’m thrilled with how this piece is going. Tune in next week (hopefully) to see the completed piece!
Work in Progress, Brush pen and colored pencil on Mixed Media paper, 2019 (11×14)