Sunday, December 5, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

King of Anvil Rock - Here is a completed drawing for one of my current projects. This drawing took longer than expected due to the details in the rocks. After scanning the drawing I figured out how to clean up the background using Photo Studio. I tried using Photoshop to do the work, but could not figure out how to do a background fill. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

King of Anvil Rock - This is the project I have been working on for a few weeks.  I have completed the shading on the tree trunk and added some additional shading to the leaves. There is a bit more to do in the upper right corner of the picture.  I also added a bit more rock, but I still have a long way to go to complete it.

I have not spent as much time as I would have liked on this piece since I have so many other projects I have started. I guess I have too many ideas to keep up with all of them.  Since this one is finally getting close to being finished, It is my hope to have it completed before the end of the month.  I need a couple of pieces to hang in a medical building during the month of December.  

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

Here is a scan of the tree I am currently working on.  When I work on my drawings I usually move around the page instead of working on any one section.  Working on any part too long will make the task seem a bit hopeless.  There are a lot of leaves and just as many tiny spaces between them.  

On this picture, I have drawn in all of the leaves and blackened in the tiny spaces between each of them.   Today I just finished putting all of the veins in the individual leaves and have started to do the final shading on some of the sections.  This can be a very tedious task which I enjoy very much.  I work mostly by feel when it comes to shading.  When I look at the picture I can see where the shading should go to give it more dimension or depth.  Typically when I start a picture I have no final product in mind, I just let it grow into whatever it will.

I am still not sure how this will look in the end.  The tree may stay as it is with the smooth bark or may become very textured.  All of that will be determined by the tree I guess.  Personally, I like the 'knot' knowing.  Bad tree joke.

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

As you can tell, I really love trees. Here are two which were drawn about a year apart.  They have a similar theme, tree on a rocky hillside, but are very different.  

The one above was the most recent and much more detail was put into the rocks than the one below.  As I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, when I first began drawing trees I typically did not put any leaves in front of the trunk.  This one has a few leaves in front of the trunk and has leaves scattered throughout the branches.  The branches remind me of a very intricate knot.  As I was working on it one person asked me if I knew anything about fractals.  Apparently they had taken a math class on the subject and the branches reminded them of what they had studied.  I am familiar with the subject, but have never studied it; however math is something I enjoy.

The tree above is also the first tree which has a very elaborate root system.  I wanted this drawing to have the feel of being able to see both above and below ground at the same time.  Personally, I like the way it turned out.

As I draw more and more trees, I like to make them more realistic, but with a touch of fantasy.  What is the point in doing art if you cannot have some fun with it? 

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

This is one of the earlier trees that I drew about a year ago. You can see that there is a definite difference in the style and the detail of this tree compared to my more recent work. During the beginning I did not put as much detail in the leaves and typically there were no leaves in front of the trunk. This was one of the first tree drawings to break away from being very symmetrical as can be seen below.

This is typical of the work I was doing about a year and a half ago. I was more focused on the trunk and seemed to always need to make the tree balanced and symmetrical. There are trees like this in nature, but these early drawings, to me, seemed to lack any real character. My more recent drawings have more randomness and chaos to them. I personally find this more appealing. 

This tree is one of my personal favorites and was one of the first to have roots which were split. All of these drawings were also created on 8.5" X 11" paper using ballpoint pen.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Study of Trees (Continued)

All of the trees I have drawn over the last couple of years have come from my imagination. This particular tree was inspired by one I saw in the distance near Marysville, California. I only got a quick glance at it as I was driving by, but it made quite an impression with it's uniqueness. This tree was also drawn on 8.5" X 11" paper with a ballpoint pen. I have tried other pens like sharpies or gel, but I cannot get the same effect as ballpoint. 

I like the commitment of ink, it forces me to do it right the first time or get real good at hiding my mistakes. I would like to think I mastered the first one, but I am fairly sure it is the second. Drawing with ink is a very slow process, but it is something I enjoy.  The shading takes a pretty light hand and it is necessary to go over the same spot many times to get the results I want. The more I work on my drawing skills the more detailed and elaborate my work seems to get. Most of my latest drawings have taken more than forty hours to complete. 

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Study of Trees

I work in a job that requires a great number of meetings. Not sure about you, but for me that requires a great deal of effort to stay awake or involved. So about a year and a half ago, I began to draw during meetings. At first it was some simple doodles, (they say people who doodle during meetings retain more information, so no one seemed to care) but over time they got a bit more intricate. I had been involved in art before, but had not really attempted anything of significance for about twenty years. My previous job and family duties kept me busy pretty much all of the time. Now with the new job, I have a lot more time to actually enjoy life and do some of the things I have been missing.

Since I have always had a fascination with nature, I took my renewed interest in art and I began to draw trees. My goal is to eventually capture the true essence of trees, whatever that means. This is one of the more recent drawings from my tree collection. This tree was drawn on 8.5" X 11" paper using ballpoint pen.