Sedona, Arizona 2017

7B5B9ABF-B879-4866-B68B-9E1200107966In early November of 2017 I took a trip to Sedona, Arizona.   It has been over 40 years since I’ve been there.  Needless to say it has changed a lot.  Could not recognize anything except the scenery.   I managed a very few sketches along the way.  We were on a Road Scholar trip which does not afford time to sketch.   I did take many photos along the way.  The first sketch is from Sedona and the derelict truck is from Holbrook, Az.  The  sketch above is Montezumas Castle, not far from Sedona.  Then we made a day trip to the Grand Canyon.  I wished I had a landscape sketchbook because this land lends itself quite well to that format for sketching.





From Marc Taro Holmes – Part 2

Direct-to-Ink Exercises: Part Two: Tone Shapes

APRIL 21, 2015

Carrying on from the previous post – here’s another pen and ink exercise aimed at freeing up your line.

Direct to Ink Exercise: Tone Shapes

  • Every scene can be thought of as three values: Light, Middle and Dark.
  • In this exercise, we will create the silhouette shapes you see, with masses of accumulated pen marks.
  • Think of it as simply scribbling in the dark shapes. working from left to right in a continuous ‘blob’.
  • This exercise will develop your ability to see the composition as a big shape.
  • You’ll find this skill invaluable as a painter. But even if you stay with drawing, you’ll benefit from a better sense of mass and volume.

15Apr02_ToneShpaes (1)

  • This time, do not outline. Instead, build values shapes from the inside out with passages of pen hatching.
  • Merge the shape of cast shadows into connected mid-tone shapes. High key passages can be left as negative space.
  • Foliage and trees, or dark rooftops can be seen as solid dark shapes.
  • Try to imply internal structure by varying your mark making.

15Apr02_ToneShpaes (2)

  • It’s ok to ‘color outside the lines’. Just approximate what you see – try to interpret reality into simple shapes.
  • Dark masses (windows, contact shadows) can be done with the brush pen.

15Apr02_ToneShpaes (3)

  • These tonal drawings should have more solidity and sense of three dimensions than the previous line drawings. Compare your linear sketches vs. your tonal ones at a distance. Stand back a few feet. See how the big tone shapes hold up?
  • This is why paintings work on the wall, and drawings work in a book. You read a drawing, you view a painting.

15Apr02_ToneShpaes (4)
15Apr02_ToneShpaes (5)
15Apr02_ToneShpaes (6)

  • When you’ve tried a few of these ‘shape only’ exercises – add back in the Single Line Drawing.
  • Use the line for detail, the tone shape for masses.

15Apr02_ToneShpaes (7)
15Apr02_ToneShpaes (8)
15Apr02_ToneShpaes (9)