Tuesday, 13 March 2012


Inspired but cautious of the idea of a drawing a day project that Sian Martin introduced on the Distant Stitch website I kept my head down and deemed that it was 'a step too far for me' and drew a line in the sand of what I was capable of doing! Well time has moved on. Gradually realised that the ability to sketch was going to be increasingly important if I was to progress in translating design ideas.  
So here goes; as they say a journey starts with the first step, here are my lines.
Day one wasn't intimidating, enjoyed the tea and page dyeing.
Day two down to the business of selecting some items to sketch. Always keen on lichen this was a piece that was on my lawn and liked its drape. The piece of fence post had been on my windowsill for some time.  The shape appealed, as a possible model for a vase, and the lichen seemed a great contrast but also companion to the other 'model'.  Photo shows up my lack of showing this relationship but enjoyed the task

Day three and during my daily garden walk found this old nest sitting at the top of the garden.  Remembering  Sian had made a sketch on her blog of a nest I thought, give it a go.  Quickly realised that getting across the feeling of the drawing was more complicated than drawing lines.  Maybe a little more time considering what implement to draw with...
Day four - It seemed timely after finding the nest to consider an egg but had I taken on board any of my earlier thoughts? Just sat down and started and got absorbed in too much detail.  A problem also appeared in the fact I couldn't dissolve the lines to soften them! Had used a brown fine pen but in the small print it was waterproof!Then I found a black pen that dissolved too much and resolved to cover this with pastels-the shadows took over and bleed through the sheets of paper.

Day five and encouraged to chose a subject that was relevant, the sap rising in our birch tree served as inspiration!  Mike, a keen home brewer of wines and beers, had started the tapping.  I had always loved birch trees and decided to include in the sketch book, a copy of the wine label I make to ensure Mike's wine look worthy of respect, pieces of the peeling bark, including a piece I have pressed to bondaweb and a cutting of when and how to tap trees.  The bleed through from the egg sketch also inspired colouring.  First attempt looks as though I had been drinking 'neat' sap. I am happier with second sketch where I have used birch bark rub, soft pencil and oil pastels to get across the translucence.