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Monday, August 30, 2010

How to Make Quick Watercolour Sketch PART4

Face expression is my most favorite area. Let's explore a model's personality and identity.
Step 1. Close look
at a face before drawing.

("Hi, My Love" A4)Define what interests you most. No idea? No worries! First impression is a good inspiration that often hits a bull's eye.

("Itchy Nose" A4)
Step 2. Sense and respect other people's emotions.
Respect privacy.
If necessary,
explain about sketching and get permission first.
Step 3.
Get on work.
Choose ONE or TWO from these techniques. Line? Value? Colour? What else?
With a chosen tool, pin down your first impression or interest on paper.

The work left gave me a hint to catch a face with a loose style.

Technical suggestions are...

Regarding drawing,
Define which part of a face shows emotions and tells who s/he is most. Eyes? Mouth? Cheeks? What else? Focus on the marked area.

Unique observation is wonderful. Exaggeration is welcome.

Wipe off stereotyped images such as smiling must have such curved lips.
Observe a face with fresh eyes full of wonder and awe. I'm still finding so many new things day by day.

2) Make Use of "Settings."
In a face, many other things tell who we are.
Examples. The woman's cosmetics & a compact mirror. The girl's pierces & a mischief headphone. They tell stories. (A4, done in train cart)

Regarding watercolor,

1) Don't look at a tree, but a forest.
Squint eyes. Find the highlight, the darkest, a middle tone and reflection. Capture a face in a big way, not detail.

2) Colour & Value are Close Friends.

A colour implies a value in a painting. Define which colour comes forward or goes back or stays still in your colour setting. Pull out each color's interesting character and make your own pallet.

The goal is to express your findings and please yourself, not please others.
Keep your first impression whole through the process.

Step 4. Celebrate your work.
Have fun with your model, friends family
and with even onlookers. My most privilege is that people love my work.

Unlike a traditional portrait, a quickie needs only a short spare time. Easy for practice.
Very simple mathematics. "20 minutes one quickie per day makes 365 practices per year," that improves us. One watercolor or at least one drawing everyday, is my workload and I love it.

BUT please never push yourself too much. If "my setting" 1 try/day is too much, find an enjoyable amount. The point is,
don't give up. Continuance is power/strength is true. Just keep up.
Work on your style and enjoy it.

(Part of Portrait. A2)Friends, thank you for sharing time. Next Monday, "body language" will be a topic.
If you would like to know more about how to sketch people, feel free to leave comments and I'll organize a post.
Yeah! I'll go for sketching! Lalala~~! Happy painting!


Monday, August 23, 2010

How to Make Quick Watercolour Sketch PART3

Hi, Friends, a loose style looks care-free. But, in fact, it requires calculated spontaneity.
The calculated spontaneity, I mean, is a good balance between unexpected outcomes(eg.wet-in-wet, brush stroke) and planned results(eg. color unity, value). It gives a picture a "rhythm" -- movement marked by the regulated succession of "strong and weak" elements, or of "opposite or different" conditions." In short, "contrast."

"Value" and "color" are handy tools to make a contrast.
this experiment, compare a traditional style (left) with a loose style (right). *size A4In the loose one, "light" and "colors" are the main concerns. A rest of other information is omitted. Simplified value = Less medium value area, is the key.

Opposite or opposite-like colors make a strong contrast. They work for darks to emphasize values.
For example, red plays up dark with blue in the hair. There, I "intentionally" made a big happy accident, wet-in-wet. Lucky!Further, in the loose style, color use is much brighter than the traditional work. Yellowish green for a blouse boosts up a contrast to the light purple hair, added with only one big stroke. Another happy accident! But keep an eye on color unity of a whole picture, while making a contrast.
As we see above, in quickies, playful colours and reinforced values make vivid contrasts set by an artist. Bouncy and less brush strokes make happy accidents. Plus, only important parts remain and unnecessary information is gone. Viewers enjoy a comfortable rhythm in a fresh and lively picture.

If color use is very challenging, please try lots of "black and white." (commissioned work pencil, A2). B&W practice certainly shows how to simplify a subject and a choice of color.

So, for a loose style, cook a subject with an intensified contrast in unique colors that characterize your work yummy! Then, forget a rest of other factors.

Simple is best.
Calculated spontaneity stays between instinct and techniques. That's a quickie.

Please remember, aiming too high never achieves anything. Get lost? Go back to B&W.

And DON'T forget celebrating your achievement!
Here's Teri's wonderful blog, "The Twenty Minutes Challenge." I really love the blog's spirit. Go and upload your precious work and let us share your joy.

Lastly, I dedicate this say for YOU, all readers and myself,

Yesterday's dream is Today's truth and Tomorrow's reality.

just do it! You'll find a way. Feel free to leave comments. Qs are Welcome. I hope my contradicted writing makes sense to you.

Next week, I'll chat over "face expression," as Irina mentioned. Thank you for great interest and wonderful friendship.
Happy everyday painting!!


Monday, August 16, 2010

How to Make Quick Watercolour Sketch PART2

Thank you for a great interest and support. This week, I'll have a chat over a process of watercolor quickies, Sadami style.

Watercolor Quickies = Witty Short Speeches.
Strictly selected
visual information is vital. The lesser, the better. Be brave to cut off irrelevant factors. Just tell others something that moves you with a few words that precisely describe excitements.
We love punchy phrases, but not a dull long thesis.
Got it?

1) Start with high light or darkest area?

Up to you. I often start with medium value and leave hightlight blank. Sometimes, I start with the darkest value before a model is gone!

2) Enhanced Value Make Strong Contrast

Simplified value produces an eye catchy contrast.
Example, 2 value setting : highlight & dark.
Example, 3 values: highlight, medium & dark.Darks decide a subject's mood for viewers.

Very interesting trick is you can use any color as long as value is correct.
(*I saw an old singer very emotionally singing a sad song on a stage and made this qickie.)
Value does all the work, color gets all the credits.

3) Many Colors or a Few?
By mixing, colors can make an unlimited pallet. The point
is how to control colors. I prefer a limited pallet.

I'm not fussy about detailed colors set by industry. As long as bright yellow, orange, red, blue,
raw sienna are on a pallet... plenty for me. Plus, sienna or burnt sienna, green ... are enough for me. That's all. I hardly mix three colors.
4) Harmony or Playful Riot of Colors?

Find "who you are" and explore it.
Similar or one color use makes harmony.
But be brave to try opposite colors. Enjoy riots of colors and have fun in experiments. In a same picture, the balance between harmony and riot is the key for success.

5) Follow Instinct & Heart. Enjoy Happy Accident.

Results of quickies follow you = Chasing up is impossible. If I intentionally aim at a good work, it will not happen. My art works are happy, happy accidents.When you hold a brush, do not think. Remember you have no time, only a few minutes for quickies! Go back to a little child once again.

6) Celebrate Achievements!!
Love yourself properly & Move on!

...I put credit on children less than 6 yrs old's comments. They are DEAD honest and NO mercy of checking work. Gulp!?!

I hope you enjoyed the content of this week. If you can pick up something useful, I'm very, very happy.

Next Monday, I'll more focus on a "loose style" achieved by
"calculated spontaneity."
Even though, I make good work accidentally, some techniques are used intentionally.

Look forward to next! Friends, Happy everyday painting!!


Monday, August 9, 2010

How to Make Quick Watercolour Sketch PART1

Thank you for many positive comments on my quickies. So, this week, I'll whisper you about my tips.
(Uni lecturer at a seminar, A4. )
Before our chat, who is this young man? I'll tell you later.
A young man met Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, whom he revered, and whose advice he never forgot;
"Draw lines, young man, and still more lines, both from life and from memory, and you will become a good artist."

Here, Sadami's Tips for Quickies of Moving People, Basic Drawing Skills.

1) Catch pattern of movement.

so hard to draw people moving around. Why?

Often we repeat movements. Take examples of sports, walk, run, dance etc that have a pattern of movement. So, have a close look of moving people. Pick up a most favorite moment = most impressive movement = make a drama.
2) Rely on your eyes.
I've hardly used photos for references. (*I might be wrong,) in my view, there's always a gap between a real movement and a photo. Or, I should say, our eyes often feel more comfortable with a moment captured by human eyes, rather than mechanically meticulous movements caught by a camera. Crutches will never be our real own legs, even though photo use is helpful after learning croquies.

3) Trust in your eyes and be brave.

Often people tell me no idea how to draw or stick figure only. But we, all, know and can do tell which drawing is correct or not. It means all of us have good eyes and the potential to master drawings! No erasure. Simplified, few, but confident lines are preferable. So, a stick figure is wonderful. All what it needs is muscles!(=Knowing anatomy is useful.)

4) It's never right until it's right.
If I do not feel comfortable with a drawing, something is against the eyes' sending information.
Keep patience and try it again and again until you feel happy with a could take...years(I did!). Many masters made same or similar drawings tens of thousands times. Trained eyes tell hands to follow visual information. Trained hands respond well.

But have fun and never be tough on yourself.
Please love your work. Celebrate small achievements. Step by step, one goes far.

Now, the answer.
The young man in the quotation was Edgar Degas. His work on ballet is well known, which beautifully catches movements and moments.

We say, "He who listens most speaks best."
I say, "She who watches most draws best."

This is an old cliche, but true : everyone begins with copying someone else. And find her own methods and original style.

And one more, a very important thing.
We do not need to make a masterpiece every time. Let's make messes "all the time." Yeah~~~!

Next Monday, I will tell you more about my way, how to do watercolor and process.
Friends, happy painting!! Thanks for your interest and support.


Monday, August 2, 2010

Quick Sketching is Mission Possible & Thrilling Hunt

Hi, Friends,
"To be a good watercolourist takes lifelong... thirty minutes." Good point!Quick watercolor is just like a thrilling hunt. It must be done in a few minutes before a model is gone. No spare time to think. Great excitement and joy.

I do watercolor at anywhere, even in a busy train cart, putting a water cup between the legs. This gentleman and I had a chat just before his getting off(A4).

Moving people is my most favorite! The quicker, the better outcome will be.
Indeed, quick work often captures a model's features more than time consumed work.

Often people ask me how I've learned it. I'm self-taught.
My approach has no magic. I've kept drawing everyday as many as possible since a childhood.

My approach...

1) Sketch people in black & white on A4 copy papers.
No regret using millions of papers!

(This "fossilized" work, pencil, A2.)

2) Study human anatomy & enjoy life drawings.

Set a time frame such as 3minutes, 5 minutes, 10 etc.

This old work was done in 3 minutes, A2, conte. (*The model was moving!)

3) Try color pencils.
Color pencils gave me the sense of colors and I moved onto watercolor.

4) Play with watercolor!
Love and Watercolor
Find favorite papers (*my favorite: Arches smooth, 300gsm) and enjoy happy accidents = explore techniques. But I value my style. The point is to be what I am, not anyone else.

This is my old work. You'll find my current style is getting more loose and quicker.

I'm still learning lots.

Great old masters' quickies/croquie have given me good hints how to draw such as Lautrec, Rembrandt, Egon Shiele and others. I always check any artist's croquie.

I'm very fortunate that
I could meet good artist friends. They show me very different approaches and encourage me like mentors.

As well as mentors, I'd deeply appreciate Friends, YOUR backup, YOUR visits and YOUR cheers for me.
Thank YOU, beyond language!!

I'm sure a watercolor quickie is the
mission possible.Happy painting, Friends!