By the time I got to this point, I was racking my brain for new ideas of what to draw. I find myself scrutinising fruit and vegetables at the supermarket, and randomly buying stuff! As kiwis were on offer, I tried them with last week’s coconut, arranging them in a two-tone wooden bowl but there wasn’t enough contrast in the colour and the texture. The tones were too similar and a bit blah. Finally I plumped for aubergines as I liked the deep colour and shininess of the skin. I then spent some time searching the house and rummaging through cupboards looking for an interesting dish, turns out my crockery is disappointingly dull! Eventually I discovered a  Moorish dish from Spain that was blue but I thought the tones might work well with the purpley-blue fruit.

Dutifully I sketched it, even though I have realised most of my preparation, and thus decision process, is done in my head! I always read the exercise the night before and spend a lot of time thinking. I know I am supposed to be drawing all options down in my sketchbooks but I think my brain works differently, I am trying though!

aubergines sketch

I wanted an interesting composition so I moved the dish around and decided to place it on a square background as I could see the geometric shapes and liked the combination of triangles and rectangles.

Although I have been trying to use different materials, I do enjoy working with charcoal so tried out a compressed charcoal set of grays that I like. If it didn’t work my back-up plan was going to be coloured or watercolour pencils.

I wanted to draw this from above which meant finding a lower surface level, in thie case a chair. Usually everything goes on the table, but this a different perspective, looking down onto the dish, and it meant I could move the chair closer to the window so the light was stronger. The whole chair was too big to get in, and the chair wasn’t particularly exciting, only in the way the forms cut across the viewer’s perspective, and the lines create different angles which was much more interesting. The perspective would be challenging but I didn’t worry too much, as I didn’t  think being super precise was that important.

The light was lovely on the aubergines, even though they are starting to shrivel a little, they were very reflective and mirrored some of the pattern from the plate. I found drawing the actual plate difficult, perhaps because the pattern was distracting, and I had to remember to add tone to give it solidity.

As I uploaded this onto the computer, I realised it didn’t look finished so I reworked into it.

Photo 04-04-2017, 11 30 05
aubergines on a patterned plate in compressed charcoal

The most successful part of this is the aubergines, they look shiny and smooth against the patterned dish. Clearly the perspective is a little off so I need to work on that (I think this coming up in a later chapter so won’t worry too much about that now.) I like the different directions of the marks, in contrast with others. The chair and dish don’t work so well but they do work as a contrast to the aubergines and the dish, the aubergines are clearly the main attraction here.


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