There is a wonderful place in upstate New York called Speculator. I wish I lived there just for the fact that I could say I was from SPEC-ULATOR!!!. There's not one WalMart or CVS within 50 miles! Peace and serenity. That is how I would describe it. I've lived along the I-95 corridor (between Boston and NYC) for the greater part of my life. Peace and serenity haven't been a regular part of my vocabulary.
My better half's family [JuliaLoveMiller] has a cabin in the woods up there. It is a nice getaway from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Thankfully they do have electricity and hot water, but that is about it. Entertainment comes in the form of quiet solitude, friends and family, or the great outdoors. One joy I get there is the satisfaction that my Boy Scout training was not a waste. It might be my inner pyromaniac at heart, but starting the nightly fire in the wood stove is INCREDIBLY satisfying.
I decided to do a sketch of the wood stove. It had a bit of rust that I hoped to capture with the red pencil undertone. Above is the original pencil drawing with a Venetian Red water-soluble pencil.
Below is what it looked like after I used a brush pen filled with water to mix with the dry pigment from the pencil. I left in a used paper towel that I put on the stove, thinking I would throw it on the fire later. Somehow that was really important to me. I REALLY looked forward to seeing the paper towel burn. Yeah... I've got a lot of pent up pyromaniac fantasies I need to let loose! Anyways, that paper towel was a huge pain in the ass to paint... I wanted a challenge but next time I will forgo my ego and compose things a little bit more wisely.
Next I added some value and color to the sketch with some watercolor paint. I painted around the lighter areas and left them the white of the paper for now.
Next, I added another wash of my bluish-purple color to the wood stove. The background I added yellow-orange wash everywhere else to solidify it and cover up the remaining white areas.
Here is a picture of the paper towel I was using to test the colors I mixed and to soak up excess paint from the brush before I applied it to the paper.
If I were to do it again, I would spend some more time on the drawing step, the rafters above ended up being quite a bit wonky by the time I finished the painting . I ended up trying to fix it afterwards, which almost never works as well as if it were perfect in the beginning! Painting is so much FUN and drawing is just WORK!
The final product. Not as impressive right next to the picture, but considering it is just a sketch, not too bad. I'm a work in progress, what can I say?
Landon R. Wilson
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