I’m determined to keep the momentum going after my short break earlier this week so this afternoon I put together this preliminary sketch of Flint, my Kelpie/Cattledog cross, ready for a watercolour painting.
The photo was taken a couple of weeks ago, the day we picked our grapes and he was sleeping on the top step outside the kitchen door – he loves to sleep in doorways so we can’t sneak away without waking him and this one is particularly good as it’s high up and catches the afternoon sun.
This sketch took quite a while and it still needs some adjusting… it’s odd how a simple line drawing can take longer than a fully shaded drawing, but I realised today that they’re actually harder in many ways. When I’m doing a shaded sketch I pick a place to start and then work away from it, filling in as I go. Things join up and fit together because the shading gives me lots of reference points. With a line drawing you’re only looking at the edges and judging the spaces between the landmarks needs a lot better judgement. Of course being very familiar with the subject doesn’t help, it’s much harder to be objective about the lines… my brain keeps ignoring the facts in front of my eyes and sticking to what it believes is correct. Maybe turning the painting and the photo upside down tomorrow will help, so I can detach myself from it more.