Following on from my initial attempts with these new Derwent graphic set this is a walk through of my process creating a sketch of this beautiful statue. I’d love to have been organised enough to make notes of what grade of graphite I used for each stage of this drawing. I’m not organised. Actually, that’s probably a good thing as I’m sure we all have different ways of working and I’m sure we all have a process of trial and error with each grade and how it can work best for us.
The first thing I did for this drawing was to sketch out a rough outline. I needed to make sure my scale and perspective looking upwards all worked right. The lightest grades (primarily H) worked best for the lightest of marks for this stage.
Working around grades HB, B and 2B I started to add the detail of the figure. With a strong light source coming in from the left the object was thrown into real contrast.
It took a few mistakes and redrawing certain areas to get the detail right. Learning to use the right pencil rather than increasing the pressure meant that I could easily erase and redraw as needed. When I was happy with the composition it was time to start working on the detail. The lack of light higher on the cathedral wall here meant that this was the area that would dictate the tones for the rest of the picture. So I decided I would simply start at the top and work my way down, pulling the statue into the drawing as I went.
The grades around 5, 6 and 7B all did their job on the darkest areas with the lower B’s all helping with the slightly lighter elements of the brickwork. Another additional benefit of having such a range of grades to work with and not having to gauge into the paper meant that using a putty eraser was so much easier to lift little areas of graphite.
Being able to alternate between the lightest and darkest grades of graphite as the statue started to build really helped with the process.
Such was my enjoyment of this process that this piece was finished in one sitting. See the finished version here. I’m sure I didn’t use every single pencil on offer this time but with such a choice I’m sure they’ll all play their part in future drawings. These pencils have made me fall in love with drawing all over again and I know that they’ll get plenty of use. I’m looking forward to not just producing more sketches but learning more about how each grade can be used.
I'm pleased with the outcomes so far and have been hugely inspired by the quality of work that other artists have achieved with this set. More details can be found on the Derwent blog here. http:// www.lovepencils.co.uk