Second term has finished in the Crescent Art Centre with the teenager group. They have practiced a range of drawing principles including line, tone, value and proportion over 12 weeks.
We began by working on simple still life compositions including draped cloth. The group worked together to choose and position objects to form a balanced composition. They used small boxes to raise some objects to the desired position.
They had to focus on proportions first. Using charcoal and putty rubbers they then showed three clear tones; light, mid and dark. Compositions were challenging as students had to deal with solid and structured objects alongside soft folds of fabric.
Over the weeks, they were introduced to objects with shiny surfaces. The compositions used a mixture of textures and surfaces that challenged their skills.
Continuing on with our 'object with fabric' theme, we studied draped clothing on furniture. Some students 'zoomed in' on the composition, filling the page with strong and dynamic tones of light and dark. The mass of fabric looks great beside the thinner spindles of the wooden chair it is hanging on.
I asked the students to use two types of drawing in one study. A simple contour drawing for the chair and tonal drawing showing value for the coat. The contour drawing should have a variety of line thickness and weight to suggest lighter and darker areas.
The quality of line is more clear is the example below.
When using acrylic paint, I encourage the students to work with thin washes of paint instead of thick application. If the paint is applied in translucent layers, overlapped colours will work together rather than cover eachother up. This also works well when there is a subtle pattern on the fruit skin.
The pomegranate painting below shows a balance of thin and thick paint application. It works well as the thin washes were used to identify areas of light and dark. The thicker parts were added on after to suggest the textured pulp and seeds inside.
They also painted onto coloured sugar paper instead of white. I asked them to choose a colour of paper that was complementary to the object they will draw. In some paintings, the purple background radiates through the paint. The students learnt how having a background colour can heighten colours in the object painted.