I’ve been feeling the urge to draw something recently, to get back to basics, with a pen and paper. I’ve been churning out digital imagery to sell online …. http://www.istockphoto.com/search/portfolio/911920/?facets=%7B%2225%22%3A%226%22%7D#1ec98cad

but sometimes it’s hard to keep up the momentum, and declining sales and views has made me feel restless and needing to explore possible new avenues. I’ve a pile of lino printing tools and lino, and I have thought I’d like to try some printmaking, but in the search for quicker results I decided to get drawing, using a nice long landscape format Tate watercolour pad I was given at Christmas, and a set of varying weight Staedtler pens I decided to use my local park as inspiration. I walk my 2 dogs there twice a day and it has a great collection of trees, some many hundreds of years old, and as I draw a lot of trees to sell online it seemed an obvious place to start. I also like the formal layout of paths and flower beds, a bit map like but in 3D, so I quickly sketched an idea in my sketch book and then worked this up more in the long pad.ImageThe first sketch is here, and this is the finished version, drawn with little or no planning, just straight onto the paper with a pen and hope for the best.

ImageThis was based on the arboretum area (the grey on the corner of the picture is just the shadow of my arm), and I then moved on to a couple of others based around the same theme, the 2nd one starting to get away from the looseness of the first one, as usual getting caught up in too much detail.ImageImageI then decided to return to a theme of a dividing road, something I’d illustrated before and which sells reasonably well as a stock image, useful for showing ideas of direction and choice.ImageI felt this one was loosening up a bit stylistically too, I tried to get away from the tightness of the 2nd one. I’ve done a couple of individual trees too, and I’m planning a bigger one, worked out now but not started. I’ve done digitally coloured versions too, but I’ll come back to those in a future post. I’m hoping to do an art fair here in Ipswich next month, something I’ve had a bit of a break from, and I’m planning to do one or two more to take to that framed.

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It’s been such terrible weather this Spring in the UK there have been few days when going out with a camera was worthwhile but a couple of weeks ago we had a nice morning which coincided with my desire to get out of the house and do something other than drawing for a change, so I nipped down to Sizewell beach here in Suffolk and managed a few shots of the power station ( a favourite subject of mine) and some boat bits left by the fishermen, plus a bit of rusty texture on some machinery, not a bad result for a couple of hours out, all now in my istock portfolio…

http://www.istockphoto.com/search/portfolio/911920/?facets={%2225%22%3A%226%22}#600b398

That shadow under the boat is a bit annoying now I look at it again!

I’ve had this hanging around for a bit, so knuckled down today and got it finished. I have a desire to endlessly add bits, and in a way I feel it would be a lot better with perhaps a couple of cars ( maybe a 2CV or a Renault 4) and some people about but I’ve got an increasing freelance load. The  London Book Fair is in about 10 days so lots of little bits to do for publishing clients finishing off book fair presentations,

http://www.londonbookfair.co.uk/

plus a fairly complex illustration for our website designers, Silk Pearce

http://www.silkpearce.com/

so I want to clear my desk and concentrate on bringing home the bacon, so , finished or not, I have to upload this to my iStock portfolio and hope it gets accepted.

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