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I caught the bus into the city and the Fine Arts library at Auckland Uni.  Here I found books I could not get in the local community libraries.  Books even in French and German.  Some translated into English… I read and took notes ( from the English written ones), and went to  a lecture on Russian constructivism with my niece who is studying Art History.  So much fun.

Working from Daumiers illustrations

Working from Daumier's illustrations

It was brilliant to see Daumiers style from simple lines drawings that showed so much, to line and tone to this mad running line that characterised his final style.

I felt really at home with this man and his art style and I want to explore his paintings now.


My model Robert sat with a light to the right and I’m really trying to concentrate on where the darks and lights are…

Drawing Robert

Drawing people, drawing from experienced artists work.  Studying tone, planes and position of features…

Working from a black and white and colour plate art-work


Here she is… Mum knitting in my kitchen.


My focus was on at how to describe the figure using line and shape.  Also thinking about how to describe the movement/action of the knitting or reading.  I was pleased with the action that comes through in my first two black pen drawings. And I loved drawing the shoes.  The head and arm size was in question.

First line drawing, black pen

Second line drawing, black pen.

I know I need to consider getting the head, arms proportion..  Record the inherent gesture / action.  I will use all this as information to work on another drawing.

I found it helpful to read Edgar Whitney here,

‘Learn to “see”, and describe from in the most elementary possible terms.  There are only four basic volumes:cubes (length and breadth can be different actually a right-angled parallelopiped – but lets save time and call it a cube), cylinders, cones, and spheres.  Your head is a cube.  Your upper arm is a cylinder.  Your lower arms and legs are cones…  An automobile is two modified cubes.

Do not think line as you draw.  Think-feel-be conscious of-describe volume.  Learn to see all volumes in terms of their simplest geometric equivalents the four mentioned above.” (1).

I really enjoyed drawing this.  Maybe more so because I was drawing my son.  As I went on, I think I became more fluid, and natural.  The drawings go from right to left as I am a left-hander and didn’t want to smudge the action! There was a shared sympathy with my model’s muscle fatigue that speed me into checking the balance, the proportions and movement quickly.  I felt a good 3-D form was described by the use of soft and hard pure graphite sticks, some torchon and finger work.

The feel and best sense of the pose, I feel grew with each pose.  My favourite would be the 6th drawing, with his left hand lifted right up.  This I felt had the best sense of the model.  Though I like bits of all the others, except for the first one, with him crouching.

1) Edgar A. Whitney, Complete Guide to Watercolor Painting. (Mineola: Dover Publications, Inc, 2001), 129

Painting piers from Ted’s brush sketch

At drawing class, pen and ink and watercolour on smooth w/c paper

Decided I like art with a bit of humour.  Had fun working on these last week.

I found a quick brush sketch of Ted’s and decided I liked the humour and colours and I’d try painting it.  The Pier was done in watercolour class and taken home to finish.

The rag-dolls were leaning against the wall on a side table and I decided to give them a go.

What fun.  I think I really like gesture drawing.  It captures a dynamic movement or thought or action and de-clutters the rest of the figures shape, asking only for the central thought the figure is wanting to do.

I think I captured the poses and conveyed a sense of energy.

I will do some more poses in the weeks to come, identifying where the centre of gravity is and balance/weight by marking the central axis of the figure.

Looking at stance and energy while playing sport at my sons tennis lessons.

Gesture drawing with tennis.

Gesture drawing with tennis.

Today I am catching my blog up with my art.  Started a new topic in my OCA Drawing paper a few weeks ago.

It has taken a while for me to realise that the nice orderly fashion I went through Topic 1, ‘Mark Making’ may not work here.  I find I am more nervous drawing in my book I have set aside for assignment work.  Far freer on a loose sheet, as I tell myself it doesn’t matter.  This can be discarded!

Today I went through Topic 3 requirements and they are all to be on loose paper.  So!  I am shifting my process of how I collect my Topic 2 Assignment work together.  It may be some of it in my A3 Assignment book and some will be loose.  And for Topic 3; ‘Nature’, it will all be loose.  I better find my old black A2 folio case and empty it to start using for OCA…

I'm an artist, teacher, percussionist, and mother currently studying for an Honours BA in Creative Arts with OCA, UK.