I know I've gotten into the habit of mostly posting drawing on this blog, but I keep myself busy with other hobbies as well. At the moment, a lot of my time is split between drawing and taking photographs. I'm currently having a love affair with film.
I've posted some photos from my Holga here before (I also have a Diana +, but for the time being my husband has appropriated that one). Now I've acquired a new toy - recently, on a whim, I was checking out Craigslist for cameras and ran across an ad for Minolta SRT-101. This is a great, basic manual focus camera from the late '60s.
The person was selling it for a song, which made me wonder if there was something wrong with it. But Morgan and I talked it over and decided to go ahead and check it out. It turns out, the camera had belonged to the guy's dad and he just thought it was time to get rid of it. Everything was in working order as far as he knew. And he threw in several rolls of film, including a couple of black and white. I cleaned the lens and filter, read a copy of the manual online to figure out what everything was, and popped a roll of film into it.
I had a minor problem where the mirror wasn't returning after taking a photo. Looked up online what to do about it, and ordered a new set of foam pads for everything in the camera. Put on a brave face, opened it up, and started removing the old ones and replacing them with the new ones. I am not usually terribly mechanically inclined, but I figured I'd rather do it myself than make Morgan nervous about trying to do it! As it turns out, it didn't fix the problem. I have one more thing I can do myself, which is opening up the bottom and oiling a little gear in there. If that doesn't work, I'll have to live with it until I can afford to take it in to a shop.
I'm really enjoying the process of taking photos and not being sure what you got until you get the film developed. I know I started off taking pictures this way, but it seems so far in the distant past that I'd completely forgotten what it's like. I have a feeling I'm going to have a lot of fun with this camera.
Last Sunday, we found ourselves in a coffee shop yet again. This time it was to wait for a friend of my daughter's that she was meeting. The place was a combination coffee shop/used bookstore, which I thought was pretty cool. While we were waiting, I sketched a woman working at one of the other tables. She was so intent on whatever she was doing that I don't think she even noticed I was drawing her.
Drawn with a Pitt brush pen.
First of all, I want to thank everyone who left lovely comments on my last post, with the watercolor painting. Your remarks are very encouraging, and I'm sure I will be trying my hand at watercolor again in the future.
It's been hectic around here with the kids visiting for a week, and I've gotten a little behind in posting. I just realized that I'd never posted my drawing for this month's Virtual Paintout here. You've probably already seen it if you follow that community, or if you're friends with me on Google+, but I want to put it up here too for completeness' sake.
This month's location was the island of Jersey, about which I knew pretty much nothing. This made it interesting to virtually wander the roads and take in the bucolic landscapes. I nearly ended up choosing a scene featuring the wide open fields and trees, but in the end my attention was grabbed by a narrow road with houses lining it.
It was a bit more challenging to draw than I'd considered. The many shades of brown and gray and the texture of the stones complicated things. Overall, though, I'm quite pleased with it. Drawn with my trusty Prismacolors.
I have some watercolors, and some watercolor paper, but I never, ever actually do watercolors. I figured it would be a challenge, all right, so I shrugged and got out the equipment.
It's true, I'm no watercolorist.
It was sort of fun, although about halfway through I contemplated calling it a failed experiment and never speaking of it again. I forced myself to soldier on, though, and in the end it's ... finished, at least. I might actually try my hand at the watercolors again here and there because much like the gesture drawings, I think it's good for me to stretch my boundaries.
I did these pages a while back, but never got around to posting them. The outlines are drawn with a Pitt pen and then they're colored with Prismacolor pencils.
|From Book Art|
I think they'd look great as a framed series. Maybe one day I'll get around to actually framing them, or maybe I'll draw another set. These were just sort of doodle-y, so maybe I'd want to do something a little more refined. Or maybe not - I'm just not sure. One thing I'm sure of, though, is that I'm not done with this idea yet. Luckily, book blocks are in constant supply right now since I've been making journals.
Not really, but sometimes it feels like it. Lately, we've been suffering through a weather pattern that includes violent thunderstorms every afternoon and evening, sometimes stretching far into the night. So there haven't been many opportunities to get out and draw. Enough complaining, though - we're supposedly going to get a break from the rain and temperatures up to 100 degrees in the next couple of days.
The last time it wasn't raining, Morgan and I went out to a cafe and soaked up some sun.
Generally, I like this, but I wish my uncertainty about how to tackle the overlapping chairs didn't show so much in my lines. I may go back and add some color later.
I didn't get any work done on my Virtual Paintout drawing today, but I'm planning/hoping to finish it tomorrow.
Sometimes, I think I don't have anything for the blog, and then I remember that I have a lot of work scanned that I've never blogged. If I could get the discipline to blog 5 days a week, I'm pretty sure I have the material to sustain it for quite a while.
Anyhow, today I was doing my gesture drawing exercises (10 days in a row now) and suddenly I felt like I had an epiphany. The drawing got easier as I was doing it, and looking back on them, I can see definite improvement. I think that suddenly I just sort of got past my brain's tendency to concentrate on the outlines and let my hands actually just flow along the forms. Here are a few from today's session.
I had to take photos (on yet another thunderstormy day) because the new drawing pad I have is too big for the scanner. What do you think - better? The bodybuilders are my favorite because I never have to worry about accentuating the muscles too much - they're all muscle! Also, for a while I felt like I was going backward - getting less of the drawing finished in 60 seconds instead of more. But today I went forward again. They don't have feet (and sometimes not hands), but there for a while it seemed like they were often legless too.