Friday, May 29, 2009

Process pictures

More process images!

I am trying to simultaneously experiment and build a new body of work with my charcoal portraits.  This is the most recent and I have to say my easy favourite.  He's gotten straight onto my website and I also entered him into Blanket Magazine's Portrait challenge.  (They are amazing go take a look) I heard of the challenge before making him and I wanted to do more charcoal works so I decided to do some double duty.  Hopefully he'll get accepted.  

He is also working for me in my attempt in gaining a student grant, and will probably be pushed into the Mosman or the Waverly Art Prize in the near-distant future. 

A very busy picture.   

Quite a few people ask me: how do you get it to look like water is dripping down it?
Answer: I drip water on it.

I hope that didn't spoil the image for anyone, some people like to not know how something is made, ruins the magic.

I feel the same about most technological and scientific events, inventions or general know-how.  If you ask me how the internet works I can safely tell you: by magic.  And that is all I have to know.  Frankly I feel like knowing too much background info sometimes kills of the mystique of life.  Apart from quantum physics, evolution and the big bang. That shit is awesome.

But I love knowing how people make images, hence the process pictures.  And I get all miffed when artists try to hide how they made something so someone can't copy them.  I swear I just want to know how they make it!  I'm not going to copy! (maybe a little bit...stingy artists...)  

But Folks get ready to try this at home,
if you draw on canvas you can use the special charcoal eraser,
but you can also you water!  
I use water and a sponge.
If I need to clean up a lot of charcoal I use a scouring sponge.

That's just cleaning up though, 
you can also use water as a mark making device.
Throwing water, swirling it around, etc.
The water picks up the charcoal, 
and dry pigment + water = "paint"
so there are marks of the water's path, kind of like weak gritty ink. 
I've used water in some my other charcoal drawings,
so try take a look and spot them.

hope that was useful to some of you, 
or will encourage someone to be more adventurous with their charcoal or drawing.

jess b

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