Leaf of the Day: Coral Honeysuckle.. Last Rites

Well the plant survived quite well in the salad drawer of the fridge, the open flower held out until 10.am, then slowly detached itself from the base, slid down the stamens and flopped onto the table. The leaves curled more as the day went on and as it got hotter so the crayons got softer and stickier, the lines got thicker and my temper got shorter, but I did manage to get it all done. Here is it immortalised, glued onto the paper with coloured wax. I am just hoping it won’t now stick to the scanner and have to be scraped off with a palette knife.
It has been an interesting experiment. Any observed drawing has to be a good exercise whatever the outcome but I feel now that I might do a coloured pencil drawing more in my own style just for fun.
There are many very good coloured pencil artists and societies dedicated to the medium. My personal preference is for artists who explore the inherent quality of the “pencilness” of them, of line and shading combined. I like to be able to see the mark, the handwriting if you, like of an artist, which is where I might very well be at odds with the stringency of the botanical art course. The obliteration of the mark of the artist seems quite the thing to strive for at the moment in botanical work which I feel is a shame. It is something I will want to discuss with the tutors on the course.
I personally feel that to see the brush work or pencil work adds so much to the “life” of a painting or drawing, accuracy and detail need not suffer.
It also takes much more skill to develop a style in mark making and paint handling than to slavishly copy a photograph. Sadly, copying skills are so often admired and perceived as the height of artistic achievement by the public. I am always sorry when a beautiful pencil or charcoal drawing is left unnoticed in a gallery when, yet another, tedious, photoreal still life is oohed and ahhed over. I am also very fond of monochrome work, pen and ink was where I started. Like black and white photographs there is a focus on the beauty of line, tone and shape without the distraction of colour ..some black and white artists to follow in next posts I think.

Meanwhile here is a lovely coloured pencil artist, whose work is more after my own heart, Katherine Tyrrell. I should have found her blog sooner as she has some very good advice for Coloured pencil users. Do visit her super art blog with lots of information about coloured pencil and art of all sorts http://makingamark.blogspot.com/
I love the textured shading and the beautiful colours, see more of her prints etc here


Coral Honeysuckle

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