Monthly Archives: June 2012

North Yorkshire Open Studios 2012

Spent a very full couple of days this weekend visiting the studios of artists around North Yorkshire. Discovered some fantastic artists working in many different mediums. Below are my sketchbook notes from these visits.


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Assignment 1 – Tutor Feedback

From my tutor feedback from assignment 1, I have picked out the main issues I need to concentrate on as I proceed through the course:

I need to vary the weight and intensity of my lines.

Ellipses – remember that the nearer to your eye level, the shallower they will be. I didn’t pick up on this (and got it wrong) in most of my drawings.

Perspective – Need to make sure that the parallel lines going away from you on an object on a flat surface will converge at your eye level. I didn’t consciously take this into account in any of my drawings (and again got it wrong in many of them as they were mainly parallel).

Lettering on objects – need to describe the shapes (not the meaning) and they need to follow the shape of the object they are on (particularly relevant to my supermarket shop drawing).

Hatching – need to try to make the marks longer, more controlled and varying in weights, as I have used lots of short lines of the same intensity.

Do either a tonal drawing or an outline, but not both – particularly relevant to my still life of natural objects drawing where I had outlined all the objects in thick charcoal before adding the tone.

Contour shading – need to make sure I follow the form more accurately.

Edges – Need to be aware of the way I describe the edges of objects and what they are adjacent to and make more use of negative space.

There was also a comment on the colouring being out of control and uneven, but I was well aware of this weakness in the drawing – I had got to the stage that it had taken me 2-3 weeks to get to that point and I was also kicking myself for using cartridge paper rather than something thicker that wouldn’t have buckled, so I thought I just had to finish at some point and send it in! It is an area I am aware that I need to work on more, and I will experiment more in stage 2.

Learning log – need to include more material outside the course structure and get excited about it. I think I will improve this as I progress through the course, and when I hopefully have more time after the end of this year.

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Project – Exploring coloured media

Exercise – Exploring coloured media

Image of my sketchbook with experiments in coloured media.

Exploring coloured media

It is interesting to do some experimentation, but I think I work better when I have an idea in mind and then experiment to achieve the effect I want to get, so I am sure I will experiment more with these mediums as I go forwards.

Research Point

Barlow, Fancis (c.1626 – 1704)

Francis Barlow was an English painter, etcher and draughtsman, possibly apprenticed to William Sheppard before 1650. Given the theme on this section, I have selected some of his drawings of birds and animals to examine, which he frequently drew from life.

Partridges and snipe

Fish on a bank

Mares and foals


All four of these images show great observation skills in depicting the animals shape and form and they all look very lifelike (the horse with all legs extended in the background aside, as this was the “accepted” way which horses where thought to run at the time, before Eadweard Muybridge carried out his studies on animal locomotion in the 1870’s).

However, all of the images are very cluttered, either full of animals or birds, or in the case of the single fish, by the surrounding vegetation.



Oxford Art Online:

Bridgeman Education:

Glexis Novoa (1964-    )

Glexis Novoa was born in Cuba, moved to Mexico for a few years, before settling in Miami. He has worked in many forms of media but is known for his graphite site specific wall drawings. These drawings usually feature the built environment, with a mixture of the imagined and real, and often show a dystopian world, devoid of people.

2006 Bernice Steinbaum Gallery

2007 Freedom Tower

2008 David Castillo Gallery

2008 David Castillo Gallery – detail

2009 Henry Street Settlement

The images all show the precise attention to detail Glexis Novoa achieves in his drawings and his perspective skills are superb.


Vitamin D – New Perspectives in Drawing. Joanna Burton, Emma Dexter et al. Phaidon, 2005

Check and log

Which of the media you experimented with did you find the most expressive?

  • Chalk and pastels as they give bold marks, dip pen is also expressive as its smooth flow encourages expressive mark making.

Which medium do you think lends itself to very detailed work?

  • Dip pen and coloured pencils
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