A friend of my wife went on vacation and her cat (a persian cat) was our guest for a week. I took the opportunity to study various markings (expressive, abstract, ambiguous, simplified) with the cat ‘Carla’ as my model. I consider this as a visual way of idea capture.
Sketches 1 – 12:
annotated in my paper learning log
What marks are more successful?
- Looking at movement, gestures, pose, expression:
– indicative, scribbling, directional marks, edge control (hard, soft), ambiguous marks
- Looking at simplicity:
– Indicative marks, light washes for volume, a few directional marks
- Looking at edge control:
– Thicker marks for undercut, disappearing forms
– Blurred marks to merge with surrounding space (uncertainty)
– Sharp edges for certainty
- Looking at ambiguity:
– washes, gouache overlay, various markings for form and negative space
- Looking at use of ink:
– Besides for atmosphere creation (background), sparely use for light washes to create volume, for bold markings to strengthen visual depth.
– New for me to use ink for building up form (ex. sketch 12) as with charcoal. It is less forgiving, non erasable, so I need to be certain or slower and smaller in my strokes.
- Looking at composition:
– more appealing with parts are leading towards the viewer, over the edge of the frame (ex. sketch 7) or it is a representation of a balanced circle (ex. sketch 11)
Next time and for further research:
– Elaborate the tested markings with other subjects and at larger scale.
– Pushing further for the most relevant marks (simplification) and ambiguous marks (gesture, movement, pose, expression).
– Experiment further with translucent drawing techniques, tissue overlay etc.
– Experiment with edges (of paper, frame etc)
Overall a quite exciting approach in just a A5 sketchbook on mark making (building on what I learned during this course)