DRAWING AUGUST: One sketch a day…#DrawingAugust

August 4, 2015

Illustrator Katie Kath Boyd is challenging everyone to participate in DRAWING AUGUST. Do a drawing everyday for the month of AUGUST.

So, I am game and willing to play. Daily drawing practice is remarkably useful! Like calisthenics for your mind! This is a TWITTER activity ( #DrawingAugust ) and since I do not TWEET but SQUAWK…my results will be posted here. Catch up with Katie’s work for the month here.

Most of my sketches will probably be from life, capturing whatever seems interesting at about 8:30 each evening.

Cherry tomato harvest. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Viarco watersoluble graphite

Cherry tomato harvest. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Viarco watersoluble graphite

Dome under construction. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Viarco watersoluble graphite.

Dome under construction. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Viarco watersoluble graphite.

PAINTING OTHERS TO FIND YOURSELF

July 16, 2015
CROPPED, full figure. MAN WITH AN OLIVE WALL. . copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Reproduce or PIN on PINTERST. Caran D'ACHE Neocolor 2 on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA PAPER.

CROPPED, full figure. MAN WITH AN OLIVE WALL. . copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST. Caran D’ACHE Neocolor 2 on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA PAPER.

Painting is self-discovery. Every good artist paints what he is.

JACKSON POLLOCK

I have been attending open session figure drawing classes this summer. It is the best meditation. Trying to truly see another person takes complete concentration, complete surrender on a certain level. Once the drawing process begins to take form, it is impossible to consciously THINK about anything else: one is fully invested in the present experience.

This sketch has been cropped for posting from a full figure pose.
I am using Caran D’Ache NEOCOLOR 2 watersoluble pastel crayons on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA multimedia paper. Strong fine lines are made with Conte pencil or DERWENT DRAWING pencil crayon. Zeta paper is able to withstand layers of wash and drawing without pills or abrasion.
Working over the course of about 2 hours, the slight adjustments of the model make me realize that nothing in life is still. Nothing. Charting movement, light, and singular moments of clear color become the activity. The wordy thinking-mind is silent. The eye is open. When the model takes a breath, so do I.
The end result is a surprise. The journey is everything.

STILL SNARKY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS…

July 4, 2015
Character sketch, AQUARIUS. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

Character sketch, AQUARIUS. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

The pleasure of the small drawing transformed by a weird caption.  Somehow this kind of work did not receive appreciation in high school during lecture. Though I did crack up one history teacher who had a righteous sense of humor.

These are quick conte sketches while watching AQUARIUS, a period drama. STYLISH. Great faces, hipster clothes and ridiculous hairdos. Even the boozer-losers look fabulous. All the junkies have the best jackets…( which was actually not true to my memory). Wish the writers would give Duchovny more zingers, though. Would also appreciate a little more GRACE SLICK in the soundtrack.

CHARACTER STUDY. Copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST.

Character sketch. Copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST.

The plot seems to find a template in Joan Didion’s THE WHITE ALBUM.

Character sketch. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST.

Character sketch. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST.

 

EVERYDAY ABSTRACTION

July 4, 2015
Cropped section, full figure study. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do not reproduce or Pin on Pinterest. Caran D'Ache Neocolor 2 on Canson Mi-Tientes paper.

Cropped section, full figure study. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do not reproduce or Pin on Pinterest. Caran D’Ache Neocolor 2 on Canson Mi-Tientes paper.

Painter after painter, since the beginning of the century, has tended toward abstraction. First, the Impressionists simplified the landscape in terms of color, and then the Fauves simplified it again by adding distortion, which, for some reason, is a characteristic of our century.
MARCEL DUCHAMP

5 minute warm-ups. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do  not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

5 minute warm-ups. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

Early morning sketches at the NORTH CAROLINA ACADEMY OF ART…

EMBRACING THE UNKNOWN through the known

July 2, 2015
Dad and Me. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERED. Do not reproduce, or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D' ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 crayons on CANSON MI- TIENTES paper.

Dad and Me. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce, or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D’ ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 crayons on CANSON MI- TIENTES paper.

There are things known
and there are things unknown,
and in between are the doors of perception.
ALDOUS HUXLEY
Presently engaged in a positive struggle with the medium.
This was a phrase a teacher wrote in my evaluation as an early art student.
Maddening and puzzling at the time,the comment confused me. Consulting a MAGIC EIGHT BALL would have been more useful. Or perhaps a basket of fortune cookies would have been more satisfying. At any rate, I probably responded with a snotty THANKS KRESKIN and moved on…continuing to positively struggle with the medium with no appreciation of what that actually meant.
Later years proved the brutal honesty of this assessment: experimentation IS a positive struggle with a medium. The only way we learn ANYTHING is through playful experimentation.
It is way too hot to sketch on location the past week, but I wanted to learn how to manipulate CARAN D’ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 PASTELS to get some specific effects. Selfies are a good way to manage a new medium. If results are heinous, adding a mustache and a gnome hat are viable options at the end of a session! Antlers are even better.
Pastel is like poetry: it is a short ride to SUPERBAD. Pastel needs to have a sense of immediacy,variation in mark-making, a measure of authenticity, and lack of artifice. One needs to know when to stop. Knowing when to stop is the hardest thing to learn and almost impossible to teach. We need to find the borderland between done and overdone on our own.
Refraining is the most potent meditation.

DRAWING MEMORY

June 24, 2015
THE LAST SWING. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTERST. Graphite.

THE LAST SWING. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce or PIN on PINTERST. Graphite.

I think it is all a matter of love: the more you love
a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.
VLADIMIR NABOKOV

SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER: NEOCOLOR CRAYONS

June 21, 2015
SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. DO NOT REPRODUCE or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D' ACHE NEOCOLOR WAX PASTELS  ON INGRES PAPER.

SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. DO NOT REPRODUCE or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D’ ACHE NEOCOLOR WAX PASTELS ON INGRES PAPER.

INSPIRATION… SHE NEVER VISITS THE LAZY
David Hockney

True dat.

Another round with  NEOCOLOR 1 and NEOCOLOR 2 wax pastels, applied dry to charcoal paper.

When in doubt do a selfie, it protects the innocent!

PAINTING WITH CRAYONS: Caran D’ Ache NEOCOLOR 2 + Stillman & Birn Zeta

June 19, 2015
BETTER PART OF SHADOW. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE or Pin on Pinterest.

BETTER PART OF SHADOW. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE or Pin on Pinterest.

Painting is an illusion, a piece of magic,
so what you see is not what you see.

PHILIP GUSTON
I really want to paint. In oil. In pastel.
But, it is sensible for me to avoid solvents and toxicity issues for health reasons and because there is not a dedicated ” work sink”. EXCUSES EXCUSES…CRY ME A RIVER….
So I have been muttering about exploring casein but slow to pull the pin on that grenade, when there are plenty of art supplies in studio. * {I still have a set of egg tempera in a drawer because at some point I realized I would have a better time dropping beans in a bottle with my nose rather than pick away stroke by stroke like a monk in the Middle Ages}.
Can I reinvent my process with existing materials, to get a painterly experience without fumes, pigment dust, or cruddy brushes? MAYBE. Let’s not give in to a failure of imagination before July.
The pastel yearning can be answered with Caran D’Ache NEOCOLOR 2 watersoluble wax pastels.
The painterly yearning can be addressed by starting with a toned ground which will allow me to manipulate surface paint into smudges and smears. I used Daniel Smith’s watercolor ground with a touch of M. Graham gouache for tint, based on a recommendation from my friend Janis ( a superior watercolorist and pigment poobah of the highest order ).
The need for a versatile surface can be answered by STILLMAN + BIRN’S ZETA mixed media paper.
Working alternately wet and dry with these crayons has opened up some new possibilities in life drawing sessions.  Just beginning to apply some ‘know- how’ to interpreting some other ideas to this method.
Just might be a painter’s summer yet!

INTERNATIONAL FAKE JOURNAL MONTH: WRAPPING IT ALL UP!

May 5, 2015
HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: behind the tree. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest : it will be a copyright violation! Do not reproduce.

HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: behind the tree. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest : it will be a copyright violation! Do not reproduce.

If you want a happy ending that depends , of course, on where you stop your story.
ORSON WELLES

The month of April is now over and my contribution to INTERNATIONAL FAKE JOURNAL MONTH is complete! You can travel through this image yourself HERE.

I spent this month wandering through Breugel’s Hunters in the Snow with some colored pencils and a bit of imagination. All the entries will not be posted online, but some have been chosen to make the journey obvious.

Hunters in the Snow can be viewed on Wikipedia commons, along with many other works of art. Using the zoom function, I noticed intimate details that were never apparent before. Inserting the character into each scene was amusing and made Breugel’s world a true mind-space. This month, I found a world within a world and some interesting facts through research.

HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: MAN DOWN! copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest: This will violate copyright! Do not reproduce.

HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: MAN DOWN! copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest: This will violate copyright! Do not reproduce.

THE LITTLE ICE AGE!
The winter of 1565 was particularly harsh. The LITTLE ICE AGE followed a period of global warming.

HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: along the path. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest. It will violate copyright. Do not reproduce.

HUNTERS IN THE SNOW: along the path. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do Not Pin on Pinterest. It will violate copyright. Do not reproduce.

THE GREAT SEIGE OF MALTA!
“Nothing is better known that the Siege of Malta.VOLTAIRE
Sorry Voltaire, but I am pretty sure this event was not covered in my high school history class. Human heads were used as cannonballs according to some sources. I would have remembered that little fact for sure. YIPES.

THE PENCIL MAKES A STAND!
Apparently 1565 marked the documentation of the pencil by CONRAD GESNER! How fitting, given the choice of pencil to sketch!

PLAGUE, ANYONE?
Breugel and Gesner both died of plague. In 1565, 25% of the population in Bergen died of this illness or cluster of illnesses. Breugel lived for 4 years after this painting was completed.

THE GOVERNOR OF THE NETHERLANDS WAS A WOMAN!
Margaret of Parma prohibited the import of cloth from London to Antwerp based on concerns that plague would be imported from England. GO MARGARET! Too bad she was a little late to the game, since mortality was high. My reading made it clear that the plague or plagues bouncing around Europe at the time are still not well understood by scientists. Some theories pose the possibility that an ebola-like illness may well have been the source of the BLACK DEATH. Apparently fleas may not have to take the whole rap!

Spending a month in this painting was a strange and compelling way to travel without luggage. The tiny booklet I chose was perfect for the amount of free time available. It was filled to completion with little sketches and notes by the end of the month. Gifting myself with new supplies was an added incentive to dig deep fast, experimenting with layered colors and simple combinations. International Fake Journal Month has proved to be a creative way to spend another April!

INTERNATIONAL FAKE JOURNAL MONTH with ROZ STENDAHL: walking with the hunters

April 12, 2015
HUNTERS7.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

HUNTERS7.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

The theme of this year’s challenge is CONSIDERED TRUTHS.

The invented character/author of the journal participated in the STARGATE PROJECT for the government as a remote viewer in the early 1990’s. In the late 60’s, the character may also have served as a casual source for remote viewing references in the novel GRAVITY’S RAINBOW.

HUNTERS8.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

HUNTERS8.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

The character’s skill in rendering was seen as an asset to the program. She could easily prepare convincing schematics and maps. It is supposed that the character generated evidence to document that remote viewing was indeed possible in the late 60’s, spurring or supporting funding for the STARGATE PROJECT. The STARGATE PROJECT was disbanded in the mid-1990’s supposedly due to a lack of actual or reliable data. Bone up your X-files to follow this train of thought!

HUNTERS9.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

HUNTERS9.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

At this time the character lives off the grid for security purposes. Travel to major museums is not possible, so she is trying to use images on the INTERNET to travel without luggage as a remote viewer.

The painting HUNTERS IN THE SNOW by BREUGHEL displays a completely invented landscape. This place never existed, and at no time could a person have stood in position to view this scene in a literal sense.

 HUNTERS10copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.


HUNTERS10copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

The author manages to insert herself into this space and begins to join in the activities of the town.

 HUNTERS11.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.


HUNTERS11.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

Sometimes the clothing is a little big.

		 HUNTERS12.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.She walks around the countryside freely, wearing a coral scarf to prevent getting lost in the painting.

 HUNTERS13.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.


HUNTERS13.copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce, or pin on PINTEREST: that is violating copyright.

You can see past IFJM experiments here and here.


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