Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A lot has happened since we finished our Major Charcoal Still-life!
Most recently, guest artist Gerri Marquardt helped us learn how to draw with light, using white charcoal on black paper, instead of drawing shadows with black on light. These are some of our White-on-Black drawings:

Gerri Marquardt is currently helping us draw with color pastels. We studied the color wheel, how primaries mix to make secondaries, and if we use a combination of all three primaries we can make browns or grays. We can use this mixing experience to help us use color for specific effect. We can create harmony or unity with analagous colors (colors next to each other on the color wheel), we can use complementary colors (colors opposite each other on the color wheel) to create contrast or emphasis. Mixing complementary colors creates neutral colors, like gray and brown. If a color in our drawing look too "flat" or cartoon-like, we can mix a little of it's complementary color into it to neutralize it.
This is an interesting way to create shadows. There are a couple of different theories on how to create shadow and form with color. For still-life, some artists use cool colors for shadows and warm colors for highlights, but if you're drawing with outdoor light, cool colors might come forward, and warm colors sit back. Whatever the case, when working on black paper, start with the darkest colors first, and build up to your lights. Be careful with pastels, though - they can "fill the tooth" of the paper if you put them on too heavy too fast!

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