Whale Dream is something I’ve been wanting to visit for a while now. There ought to be a few drawings I can pull out of this general theme. This one is the first – 17″ x 23″ finished size.
Just for the heck of it, I’m putting a photo of the piece as it currently sits on the easel in my studio. The clamps that are holding the (well sanded) wood strips on either side of the plexiglass drawing board allow me to easily move my mahl stick to any orientation while I’m working. I like that innovation 🙂
Here is the first photo I took of the drawing all laid out. Getting a start on Whale Dance meant collecting reference photos. I was heading out of town for March Break, and figured I better actually put something onto paper before leaving.
There might not be much concrete accomplishment in this photo, but at least the drawing is stirring from it’s slumber before I left for the Mayan Riviera in Mexico (a lovely vacation was had in a nice all-inclusive).
I took some graphite powder to the drawing, because that flow that will be such an important part of the finished piece needs to be present throughout the process. I rubbed it in with old paint brushes, makeup remover pads & sponges, and Q-tips. Going back and forth on the graphite with assorted gum, kneaded and vinyl erasers helped it take shape.
This is where I started going back and forth a bit between drawing the main figures and working the graphite more to show where the complexities and depths will come in to play.
The figures of the Dreamer and the Whale are coming in to better focus in this photo. I am using a mechanical 2H pencil as well as a carefully maintained & regularly sharpened (by rubbing on a bit of sandpaper) 2B wooden pencil. The dolphins are in place now.
A day spent filling out the Whale shows how glacial progress can be. This will be one of those pieces that will reveal and come in to focus as my process advances. The major elements are in place. The hard part – the weaving together – is going to start now.
WhaleDream is finished. I’ve noticed that when a piece starts to look to me like a messy collection of scratches and smudges, it’s time to stick a fork in it.
I managed to pick up a matte and frame today from Victor Gallery down on Queen St. here in Toronto. I think the latest pair of drawings look good together over the mantle in their matching graphite grey frames.