Patch and Foxgloves……

I have a new student who has just sent her first set of work in for the Pet Portraits Diploma course and i felt that the ‘about you’ piece that I ask students to create was so wonderful I wanted to showcase it here on the college news blog. I asked Sandra if she would be able to write something about it and she was thrilled. I hope you all like the artwork and are inspired to pick up your pencil!

This is how the picture started and how it was put together. I spent a few days pondering about what to draw and how to condense all the things I loved into one picture. I wrote a few lists and in the end picked three items. My garden (full of flowers), Bumble Bees (the reason I planted the flowers) and Patch my cat – after all I am doing a Pet Portrait course and I see him more than I see my husband.

I then spent the following Sunday afternoon chasing my cat and bumble bees around the garden with my camera. I had just planted some lovely foxgloves which I bought from a car boot sale and thought they would make a nice backdrop for my picture, also giving my bumble bees something to land on.

After printing out my photos in grey scale and to the size I wanted, I used a piece of tracing paper to map out my design. I always use tracing paper because it can take endless rubbings out and I can lay it over images to find the best possible composition. Once I was happy with my line drawing I photocopied it onto a piece of printer paper. With this image I worked out where all my darkest darks and my lightest lights were going and blocked them in roughly on my printout. This gave me the basic plan for my picture.

After that I transferred my image onto some cartridge paper (BIG MISTAKE should have used hot pressed watercolour paper). I went back to my reference photos and carefully drew in all the details using lots of different grades of graphite pencil. 20 Hours later there it was.

I enjoyed the whole process immensely and look forward to the next challenge…….COLOUR.

Paint brushes at the ready,
Sandra (Pet Portrait Diploma)

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