I’m glad to report that the new carpet has been laid and our house is slowly returning to normal – I today I can finally step back inside my studio!
After painting for the last few pieces, I wanted to get my hand back into drawing mode so I started this Rhodesian Ridgeback as a quick experiment see how graphite works on drafting film. Drafting film is my favourite support for colour pencil work, but I have never tried it for graphite until now (very few artists use it, although I have found one artist who has been using it as a support for thirty odd years).
Photographing it proved very difficult, but I have finally managed to get a semi-reasonable digital image of this one by scanning it, it is still a work in progress, so not yet completed. Film is a really nice surface to work on, and it is more like painting in graphite and charcoal than drawing that is both good and bad, good because it allows very soft transitions of tone, bad because it is easy to lift off and smudge.
I normally only use charcoal for getting my darkest darks in my graphite work, but I found myself leaning more and more towards the charcoal with this one, and whats more, really enjoying ‘painting’ with it using a variety of tools such as chamois, tissue, cotton buds (q-tips), a watercolour brush and a make-up sponge.
Probably the best thing about drafting film though, is the ability to put a different colour paper behind the drawing. I used a cream parchment paper, and although it dosn’t show properly in the scan (think marbled/mottled cream rather than solid), the effect it gives in real life is really interesting, and something I am looking forward to experimenting a bit more with.
The reference photo was one of my own, and the drawing is approximately A4 in size and when it is finished I will probably offer prints of it at RedBubble.
The first image shows the drawing with the cream backing:
The second image shows the drawing with a white background:
I’d love to know your opinion on my experiment, and if you use drafting film for graphite and charcoal work, or would like a charcoal pet portrait of your own Rhodesian Ridgeback, I’d love to chat;)