8.5" x 11.5", coloured pencil on Saunders Waterford HP 140 lb
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
I'm beginning to notice something interesting about my drawing. I'm enjoying the backgrounds more and more, particularly if they have one of my 'colour field' effects - basically layers and layers of different colours producing an optical effect using an open hatching technique. Scans do not reproduce the effect terribly well though - on the other hand, they might and it could just be my scanning technique!
With this particular drawing, I knew I wanted a very dark background because to get form into the peony I needed to be able to use colour and I needed to keep the contrast heightened. So I decided to try using Zest-It solvent to melt the coloured pencil in the background so that it covered the paper. Basically this just meant that I could get a good lush dark faster. A lot of coloured pencil artists who have very rich darks in their work prefer to use solvent to avoid acquiring a repetitive strain injury to the hand using the pencils.
You can find more details about Zest-It below - artists mainly use it with oils as a replacement for turps but it's also very useful in colour pencil work.
- Zest-It - environmentally friendly, non-flammable, non-toxic, biodegradable solvent
- Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew