In today's post, I wanted to share this empress and landscape drawing I did in my sketchbook. The paper is 50 lb. I used HB charcoal pencils, white charcoal, tortillons, and brushes for blending. The reference for this work can be found on the art station I recently bought several reference packs and wanted to do some drawing from them.
I imagine a scene where a fight had taken place and the warrior had stood strong over her foe. Posing for victory. The robe, sword, and skull were all a part of the reference everything
else came from imagination and changed over time.
I decided to stay with the nudity for this piece. I used vine charcoal to capture the pose. Its
a lot easier to manipulate because there's are no binders or hardeners to help it stik to the page. Try to remember the key landmarks of the figure. like the ribcage, torso, pelvis, or head. Once I got the figure down I came in with an HB charcoal pencil to make these lines permanit. I then went a little crazy with the foreground adding rooks where I wanted.
I then got myself a 2" brush and blended it out. with a needed erase I began pulling out the highlights then working on the blackest blacks. Now I begin to put the whites in mixing it with the black. this may cause it to look muddy but later ill work more blacks back in which should clean it up.
I want to talk about the little ponds I put in at the last second. There are 2 things to point out the rim of the water that meets the rock and the dark values under the rim that tell us how deep the water is. Before that, I brought a small tortillon in and worked on the rocks then I got a nice round brush to soften it. I just want the rocks to be faint pulse it strengthens the illusion that there underwater.
I then brought HB charcoal pencil in to create some deep dark tones. these will be blended out later. I think it would be a could idea to talk about the composition. I really want to focus on how our eyes are directed to the darkest areas at this point. when I started rendering rocks I wasn't thinking of this. I want to direct the viewer up the figure and to the face.
so I came in with a needed eraser and lightened up a lot of the rocks and contrast that did not lead to that goal. The last thing ill talk about is the background. I wanted it to be clear that a battle had taken place so I brought some dust clouds in. at this point fixative had been thrown in on the page to sort of freeze what was there. I then got a fan brush and charcoal dust and spread the charcoal dust all over the page. This will daken what's there so be careful. Then ill pull out those highlights then re-soften and repeat until I get to a point I like.
vine charcoal - easily lifts from the so it's a lot easier to manipulate and change
HB charcoal pencils - Provides texture mostly in the foreground
white charcoal - for smoothness and highlights. It can also be mixed with black to create darker tones.
tortillons - Tortillons are a way to blend and apply charcoal to the page while keeping control over the charcoal.
brushes - Brushes can soften and lighten a tone. You can apply charcoal to the page but there's a loss of control. They're perfect for the background.
Sanding block and a razor blade - Used to sharpen pencils