As the title suggests, today has been a day of graphite pencils rather than paint and brushes. It has made a good change and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my few hours at the studio. Yesterday I started playing around with a few ideas for drawings about Ailsa Craig and spent my last hour in the studio scribbling in a sketch book. I quite liked one of the small drawings and today decided to try and do another version …..this time using a graphite pencil on board. It made for some very nice marks and after doing one I got into it and over the next few hours did another three small pieces in this manner. One of them based on the idea of looking across to the hills over on the Isle of Arran and the other two based on sketches I did up in Assynt a few years ago.
It is surprising what interesting marks can be made working onto wood as opposed to paper and in a similar way that the pastels I use pick up the surface of the paint, here the pencil picked up the small ridges in the primed surface. I was using a fairly soft graphite pencil most of the time – 6B, but for finer marks I worked with a 2B. Each of the drawings are quite small …just A5 size and I may include several of these in a local exhibition next month. The exhibition organiser asked especially for small pieces at the lower end of the price range. I’ll post full details about this in a few weeks time.
Of course, now I’ve done these small pieces I’m already wondering quite what a larger piece would look like done in the same way? As I already have several boards cut that are either 60 x 60 cm or 80 x 80 cm, I’ll probably try something at this size. However, I’m getting a vague thought that perhaps something considerably bigger might work really well …perhaps 90 cm wide by 160 cm high. Using the same scale of mark as the small pieces would be very time consuming on a large area but would be very interesting. If I do try something like this then I think I’ll have to buy myself a good audio book to listen too while I’m drawing.
When I was in Speyer two years ago I worked on a fairly abstract painting that was I think 80 x 140 cm and I scribbled very fine marks into the whole of the surface. This took me a couple of days of very slow work …and I was thankful there of having a good book to read while I worked. Oh well, I guess it’s just a case of watch this space ….I’ll hopefully have time to try something like this soon.
I’ve just heard from ‘the gallery on the corner’ in Edinburgh that they’ve just sold one of my 76 x 23 cm paintings. As they also sold one of my 30 x 30 cm pieces not long ago, I’ll have to get some replacements to them soon. I have work going to The Strathearn Gallery for their Christmas Exhibition as well as several pieces going to The Framework Gallery in Troon for their pre Christmas exhibition too. As I say, full details of both of these exhibitions soon ….the point is, that I’ll have to get a few new small acrylic and pastel pieces done ….it’s all go…..but very enjoyable!