Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Delving in to the Sosltice: sketches about the dark

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 During these short dark days every moment of sunlight is a miracle. The rising and setting of the sun become major events for me as they were for my distant ancestors across the seas of thousands of years.  Yet, despite the fascination with the precious little sunlight we get here in the northern hemisphere this time of year it is the ever encroaching darkness that really takes center stage in my mind and imagination.

Dark shades of blue, purple, black and brown dominate my sketches.  The light (always impossible to really capture) is symbolically portrayed through the hot fiery colors of the sunrise and sunset,  Inevitably metallic gold and glitter gel pens, as well a bronze, white and silver pens make their appearance in my sketchbooks at this time of year,
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Another thing I do this time of year is work more and more with  water soluble ink in my pens. When watercolors are added the ink flows and mixes into the colors deepening them and harmonizing them in a dark, inky sort of way. Knowing that my ink line will bleed and run if touched with water also makes me leave more bits of sparkling white paper as I endeavor to keep lines intact in certain parts of the sketch. These sprinkles of white add to the contrast in the sketch and make the dark seem even darker.
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A dusting of snow gave me an opportunity to leave a lot of white paper and very quickly create a bold, wintry scene on solstice day.

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By late in the day all the snow was gone and we were back to deep earthy colors made even more vibrant and rich because everything was wet from the recently melted snow.

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One more way to capture the season is to create an art journal page. not a sketch, but rather a mixed media piece of art that is contained on a page in my sketchbook.

So many wonderful ways to create and record what we see, and experience everyday. Each sketch is a small celebration of all the good things that surround me each and every day.

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