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Thursday, 15 January 2015

What were they thinking?

Getting into the heads of designers and illustrators using pen and ink

In my previous blog entry, I told you about the fun I had with Daler-Rowney Pitt pens for artists. The very next day saw me back in the studio, determined to put those pens through their paces. I was still very intrigued by the designers and fashion illustrators I had (re-)discovered the day before and decided to make an applied effort to get into their heads as far as the creative juices were concerned. My inspiration was drawn from this book:

I knew straight away that it would be the ideal marriage to introduce the Daler-Rowney FW Acrylic ink to the process. I could barely wait to get started. The whole drawing and most of the colouring in was done with Pitt Pens. The flesh parts and the background green were painted with the FW ink. I painted with two angle brushes.
(After a drawing by Lorenzo Mattotti)

I took the photos while the ink was still wet, which is not entirely fair to the paper. I used Canson 120 gsm paper, which recovered quite nicely once dry.

After experimenting with the FW ink and Pitt pen combination, I wondered if I could be satisfied with only the pens again. So I tried the purist approach. Let me assure you, those pens lack nothing. It was a marvellous experience.
(After a drawing by Roberto Cappucci)

I drew this picture using a charcoal pencil. I coloured great parts of it with Daler-Rowney Pitt pens wanting to see how the pens would respond to charcoal. I was pleasantly impressed until I checked the points of my pens which had become soiled by the charcoal, Though I managed to clean this up, I am not sure I would risk my pens like that again! I then added the red using Daler-Rowney FW acrylic ink and an angle brush.
(After a drawing by Michael Cooper)

I then came across this dashingly beautiful design by Ralph Laurent. I am not sure that the photo allows you to see the Pitt pen drawing. Nonetheless, I drew the sketch with Daler-Rowney Pitt pens. I then coloured the flesh parts of the drawing with the same pens. I painted the coat red using Daler-Rowney FW acrylic ink and an angle brush. Still it lacked something. I then remembered some markers I bought years ago. I think it was made by Pentel, but there are no markings on the pens for me to tell for sure. They came in a set of 5 colours (black, red, green, yellow and blue) and they have brush points, which is why I bought them. Not owning a black Pitt pen, I grabbed the black from this set to add to the picture. That did the trick!
(After a drawing by Duncan)

I drew this sketch with a combination of Daler-Rowney Pitt pens and for the grey I used a Staedtler fine-liner. I then coloured the drawing with Pitt pens, before adding the red and black with my unknown-name markers with the brush tips.
Right from the start, I was uncertain about adding the cello, but I decided that getting into the heads of these great fashion designers and artists meant going all the way.  I am still not sure that I like it. Perhaps it draws too much attention away from the figure?
(After a Karl Lagerfeld design, drawn by Joe Eula)

I had been drawing for the greater part of the day and it was getting late, before I remembered about the Paint Markers by Pentel. I had never used them, but I was determined to work with pen and ink and they fell into that category, so out they came. I drew the picture using Daler-Rowney Pitt pens. I then added the black, using the unknown marker with the brush point.  The colour was added with the Pentel Paint Markers. They worked like a dream and became an instant hit. I added the yellow last and was pleasantly surprised to see how vibrant it remained, even when applied over ‘stronger’ colours. The finishing touches were added with a grey Staedtler fine liner. This was mainly used to add a lighter shade for the black, e.g. in the belt area.
(After a drawing by Mattotti)

Nearing the end of a day spent drawing, I suddenly turned into a purist again. For this drawing, the only male figure all day, I used only the Daler-Rowney Pitt pens with Indian ink.
(After a Gianni Versace design and a drawing by Viramontes)

I am passionately hooked on Daler-Rowney FW acrylic ink and I was already packing everything away after a whole day of drawing, when I decided to do one more drawing, this time using only my favoured FW inks. I grabbed a nice big Hadida feather from the stash my nieces and nephews collected for me. I dipped the feather in black ink and drew a quick portrait, the only portrait for the day. I then used an array of colours that astonished me, since I did not really colour the picture, but left it largely white. Can you believe there are 3 blues, 3 reds, a black, gold and yellow in there? The brushes I used was a small flat, two angle brushes and a fan for the earrings.
(After a drawing by Viramontes)