Friday, 14 September 2012

Wakefield Diary Page in Progress

Detail from the finished page
After a lot of procrastination and thinking about it I finally get out side to start a little project that has been in the ether (the ether being 'my brain') for the last six months. The original idea was to venture out into the wonderland that is Wakefield and produce brilliant looking sketches in situ, I tried that a few times and felt totally underwhelmed by my efforts. Physically making large scale drawings in an urban environment was not something I felt comfortable with and so I went back to working in my sketchbook.

Sketchbook drawn outside taking in the atmosphere of the area, in this case, drizzle.

The offices of the Aire and Calder Navigation, near and part of a trading estate, are my first place of 'interest', this was an easy place to start off with and I found a secluded corner that I could work with my dip pen and ink without attracting too much attention. It's a fine line between attracting people who want a quick look and who are then happy to move on and attracting the people who want to talk to you for the afternoon through sheer loneliness and then to tell you that they know someone who is a proper artist, sheesh! I like the sketchbook pages but for me their value is in the doing, they don't necessarily make much sense if you were not there at their creation. So I have been treating them as field notes and using them in conjunction with photos for reference back at the house, where I can make 'proper' pages out of them. Drawing the pictures direct with dip pen & ink and watercolour is still my preferred drawing method, using Photoshop for what it was designed for, to tweak some of the colour values right at the very end.

I didn't realise at the time I was stood drawing under a giant sleeping lady

I have always like to tell stories and I found the single illustration approach that I had in mind at first, limited in the way I wanted to portray Wakefield. The project is also a way of getting me outside, I love doing the fantasy story drawing stuff that comes from my head and a writer's scipt but I feel it's time to get back to a bit of observational drawing. Now that the bad weather is coming, ahem!

Over the coming weeks I will be able to tell you a bit more about what this project is and what it will hopefully end with in November, but for now I want to let the creative cauldron simmer with the pressurised steam of me making something delicious.

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