Sunday, November 22, 2020

Subtlety of Modulation


Sometimes people who have been following this series ask (or imply through their comments) how I have managed to sketch the same subject for 251 consecutive days without getting bored. My answer is that my hand ceased to be the subject long ago. My hand is nothing but a study of form, which I find endlessly challenging. While sumi ink and brush pens enable me to explore values and form in a different, and enjoyable, way, dry pencil is the only medium I’ve used that offers a subtlety of modulation that fascinates me. I’m sure skilled painters know how to do this with a wet medium, but I need something dry. With pencil, I can fully explore the light dropping off suddenly to meet the shadow, and the shadow beginning to turn toward the light on the other side.


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