Clean New Slate

Thursday, 25th August 2005

art bag

This art bag (an organiser bag sold by the National Trust) has gone with me almost everywhere - travelling as far afield as Mallorca - in the last 15 months.

I've drawn it with my Rapidoliner, currently fitted with a 0.5 nibbed black refill. What I like most about this pen is the inkiness of the line, what I like least about it is its over-inkiness - particularly its celebrated habit of 'exploding' in the reduced pressure of an aircraft cabin.

On the plus side, unlike my Rotring Art Pen, when the Rapidoliner ink is dry it is waterproof, so I can be free with the watercolour wash.

sketchbook Fresh Cartridge

I like the smooth, 150 gsm, acid free, slightly creamy cartridge of the new Daler-Rowney sketchbook that I've drawn this in: this is the first time I've tried the paper for colour. It takes a while for the wash to dry, so I found myself wafting it with a piece of paper so that I could turn the page.

Habitat mugThis sketchbook has a stout book-style binding, which is a change from the chunky spiral bound Pink Pig sketchbooks which I've used a lot during the last year. It has a suitably rugged 'slate' design on the hard covers. As it's A6 (6 x 4 inches), it's perfect for popping in my art bag when I set off on a journey.

And I can do that again now that, at last, I have finished my garden book. The proof of the cover should arrive tomorrow.

Big Mugshot

mugI drew these under dim light, after dinner and a glass of wine, without reading glasses, so it was interesting to put my glasses on after I'd drawn them, to see just what the results were.

You should be seeing this drawing of the Falcon housewares cup that I use for my paint water (it's the lid of a small churn type of jug) at it's true size (right) of about 2 inches (5 cm) but I've enlarged it (left) to show you the texture of line and watercolour in it. Some of the subtly and the characteristic wobbliness of my line gets lost in the small version.

Working on scans for print for my book for the last few months makes me realise just how much is lost in the 75 dots per inch versions of my drawings as seen in this diary.

In print you'd be getting the drawing at it's true size, as on the right, but incorporating all the detail and texture as seen on the left. Next Page

Richard Bell,