Museum Sketching With A Pencil

It’s a balmy 41F here this morning, with the promise of rain.  Mr. Weatherman is promising something called “sun” about mid-week so maybe, just maybe, I’ll get to sketch outdoors this week.  Hope so.

Since I am limited to indoor sketching, though, I thought I might use the time to do something I’m really not good at – use a pencil.  When I started sketching it just seemed natural to use my fountain pens so I skipped the traditional ‘use pencil first’ approach to drawing.  I think there were virtues to this approach as I had to concentrate on seeing relationships before I put anything on paper.  The drawback, I think, is that sketching with pens emphasizes contour more than masses.  It’s also rather silly, and sometimes embarrassing, for a sketcher not to know how to use a pencil.

So, when I went to the museum yesterday I was determined to use a graphite pointy device to make a drawing.   I decided to draw Athena, with her leather helmet pushed back on her head.  She’s a reminder that strong women were very much a part of the Greek religion.   The daughter of Zeus, Athena was the goddess of reason, intelligent activity, arts and literature.

I did this drawing on Stillman & Birn Alpha series paper.  While I love the paper for my pen and ink drawings, I have no idea whether it’s good or bad for pencil.  It seemed to work.  I used Staedtler pencils.  I always have fun drawing on location but admit that a pencil felt clumsy in my hand.  I think I learned a lot but I’m not sure what at this point (grin).


2 thoughts on “Museum Sketching With A Pencil

  1. Great museum sketches you’ve been doing! Hope the sun appears sometime soon!

    • Thanks, Tina. As you know, I’m more of a building sketcher than a people/face sketcher. This is a ‘make lemonade’ thing for me and I have to confess that I’m learning a lot while staring at carved stone, trying to put it on paper. I should get outside sometime this week.

      Cheers — Larry

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