I've taken the plunge and plunged straight out of my comfort zone.
Decided to draw our eldest daughter with our youngest cat.
Decided to go for it and use an unfamiliar paper, unfamiliar graphite clutch pencil, an unfamiliar subject and push that boundary a wee bit further away.
After hours of committed work, I am happy to see that I have reached another mile stone in my work. Never before had I been able to draw a loved one without tearing up the drawing before completion!
(Below you can read up on the whole process)
Added the finger, darked the blacks, worked on the skin and tweaked her and there. Another 4 hours work and I decided to call this piece done.
Ready for the next portrait.
I will admit that this one was maybe a wee bit easier than if my little girl had had her eyes open and her nose showing.Will step up to that with the next one.
Started framing my daughter's head with hair and have drawn in the ear as well as emphasizing her jaw line. An outline for the stray strands of hair in her neck has been left. 30 hours into the portrait and it was only after completion of this phase that I sat back and had a good look only to see the fingers where wrong! Talk about seeing without seeing!
This is really when the going got rough! The connection between the kitten and my daughter's face is crucial. It had to look real, the shading and the feel had to be bang on... adding graphite and blending where really on the menu at this point.
I felt I just wasn't getting it. It wasn't until much later on that I realised that the problem was not at the "connection" like I thought but the hand and the kittens face. The hand has one finger missing and the kitten no depth
Here the fur and the initial work on the hand has been done. They have started to give a feel to the piece. I was quite happy with them and decided to start on the kittens face. His eye was drawn first and then the fur. His whiskers where penciled in so as not to be forgotten. We are about 15 hours into the drawing.
The outline is defined and worked out, complications (which in this case could be found throughout the drawing) pinpointed, a plan devised.
Being right handed, I've started on the left and worked towards the right in order to not smudge my work.
The paper is an ultra smooth one known as Mellotex, it is brilliant for getting fine detail but allows for no sloppy work or mistakes in the pencil strokes. It also needs a lot of work to bring up the dark shades.
I've used mainly a 2B graphite with an under layer of 6B for the cats fur.