Saturday, October 16, 2010

Finished a drawing, another in progress

"Grapevines on Rocks" is finished and on the wall for evaluation. So far I am very pleased with it. The past few weeks have been very dry and warm here in La Crosee and I have been doing outside work getting the yard and watergarden ready for winter. The waterlily leaves have been removed, the bridge that spans the narrow part of the watergarden has been primed and repainted, some of the water hyacinths have been removed. The vegetable garden has been mostly cleared out except for the cabbages that haven't grown much and the onions that I started from seed this spring, I separated and replanted. Next year they should yield bulbs.
My latest drawing is based on photographs I took in the marsh last month. The shadows cast by this lacy leaf on the bridge deck are very interesting. And somewhat complicated to do.
"Shadow Lace", 11.5" x 18", colored pencil on primed paper. In this drawing I brushed the blue shadows with odorless paint thinned and covered with more blue to get the shadows dark enough. On the leaf I scraped out the highlights, the primed surface made this easy to do.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Summer has ended! Fall drawings in progress, the La Crosse River Marsh in flood

"Wooded Road" the last of my summer pictures is now on the wall for evaluation. All that green and yellow! Now is time for subjects with much less green in them. My next drawing is based on a photo I took during one of our driving tours in the region. There was a small dam (I can't remember where) with rocks and grapevines down stream of it. I altered the photo to make it more purple and yellow and more constrasty. For a change I did this drawing on maroon Color Fix paper, (13" x 18"). The sanded surface eats colored pencils fast but the painterly, pastel-like appearance is worth it. After all I have lots of pencils just waiting to be made into pictures. The dark shadows I brushed into the grain to make them darker. I tried using colorless blender in the highlights but it doesn't seem to work well with this surface.

I haven't been bike riding in the marsh since the heavy rains earlier in September. Yesterday I took a short ride to the north end of the marsh trails and was met by road blocks to restrict access. A bicylist came off the trail and said it was water covered in the middle of the marsh and unpassable. So I just rode my bike to the bridge over the La Crosse River. I really didn't do much riding, I was taking lots of photographs. The flooded marsh was fascinating and beautiful! And there were no mosquitos! The few photos shown here are only a fraction of what I took that day. Of interest was the three canoeists coming downstream. The lower part of the La Crosse River is popular with boaters since they can start at a convenient location up river and end up near downtown in Riverside Park.