Nibbled Cone

Thursday, 9th February 2006

Queen's Drive Fisheries, Ossett

Café Revive, Meadowhall, Sheffield

I picked up the squirrel-nibbled pine cone on a track by the edge of a plantation at Ladybower Reservoir on Sunday.


Pencil line, ink wash

I've tried to take my tonal wash drawing a stage further by dispensing with the line drawing which I used as the starting point for the drawings of bricks and buildings in yesterday's diary.

  • I started drawing the cone with a sharp new 'F' pencil, the first time I've used this hard grade of pencil.

  • It was already dark outside and I trained a desklamp on the cone, to keep the lighting consistent as I added the washes.

  • Because the whole of the pine cone was darker than the brightly lit paper behind it, I started with a pale wash of grey over the entire subject and shadow. I later regretted this because I would have liked some white highlights on the cone. Perhaps next time I'll place my object on a grey background so that I can show the full range of tones in the object itself.

  • I added another 5 or 6 washes, all of the same pale grey mix of Chinese ink and water, trying to be patient and letting the drawing dry in between washes, otherwise the wash runs into what you've just painted.

  • I added a few areas of a darker grey wash for the shadows.

I look forward to trying some more tonal drawings. Next Page

Richard Bell,