Sunday, March 16, 2014

Collaboration, Part Two...Progression and Transformation in Alliterative Drawing

This shows a series of images of a drawing done in progressive stages with no Photoshop or other digital manipulation except for scanning at various stages of completion. It is, hopefully, a good example of drawing as transformative or progressive exploration through the use of a graphically alliterative vocabulary. Alliteration is used figuratively here as a metaphor for the repetition of consonant elements in a particular drawing. A more appropriate definition in this case might be 'symmetrical alliteration' through the use of the classically repetitive elements in the design of this particular project. This is a set of renderings that I did for LeVaughn Associates Architects ( for a townhouse on Chicago's North Side. As with all of Tim's work this is a particularly well composed building. The drawings are presented in descending order from final to initial stages of composition. 

This is the third of the four drawing stages. You really need to click on each image to get a sense of the quality of the line work and the tonal representation. The 8-1/2" x 11" drawings are done in ink on stretched yellow tracing paper and rendered with Prismacolor pencils ( and ChartPak AD markers (, primarily Cool Grey #2 and Warm Grey #4 on both sides of the tracing paper. The dark black sky is rendered on both sides with fine point "Sharpie" black markers. I've talked before about the need to render on both sides of yellow tracing paper, the primary reason being that it gives you the ability to combine media that otherwise cannot be applied on top of each other or to diffuse the impact of particularly bold, dark or messy markers. As far as ChartPak AD marker washes go, you should never use anything darker than a Cool Gray #3 or Warm Gray #4 in any circumstances, especially on tracing paper. Use lighter washes on both sides of the paper and then, only then, apply pencils washes over them. Applying marker washes over pencil washes is a recipe for disaster.   

This is the second stage of the drawing. The only appreciable difference between this stage and the third stage is that there is more contrast here between the sky and the window glass and more subtle shading in the grey tones. The nice thing about 'night' views like this one is that you can subtlety imply shadowing and changes in object plane through the use of dark sides / light sides by means of soft grey tones. Classical buildings such as this one really need the resonance of line work to fully define the principal elements of the design. For example, the detail in the cornice.

The final image shown below is the first stage image. It is purely the original drawing in ink on yellow tracing paper. This is the final base drawing that the fourth stage color will be applied to (see previous post) and does work well as a stand alone image if you're into that sort of thing. The line work drawing was done actually done twice. Why, do you ask? The first line drawing was the original base and was so saturated with pencil work that it would have been too 'muddy' to really render in color without destroying the crisp line work with a kneable eraser. So instead it became the base drawing for the second and third black and gray tone stages above and this 'clean' base drawing is now the original that I will now render in a softer, pastel driven palette. Once the original line drawing was done, re-tracing it to create the color ready base drawing only took a few hours.
Click on the original to get a better sense of the line work and how it actually works well, as I previously mentioned, as a stand alone drawing.

No comments:

Post a Comment