Above: Parallel Pen sketch from a 19th century photo. I started as I typically do with the right eye (on my left as I look down) and when I started with the first stroke I knew the other eye would fall in the gutter. But at least I eeked out one full side wing of hair. (5.5 x 8 inch softbound Strathmore 500 Series Mixed Media journal.) Click on the image to view an enlargement.
I think I might have said everything I needed to say about this image in the caption. I wrote about working in this smaller-sized commercially bound journal on Wednesday.
OK, two more obvious things.
It's been very cold here in Minnesota the past few weeks. I haven't been able to get over to Como Zoo and sketch the animals. (With 20 below zero temps, and stiff winds, I think I might freeze just walking from my parked car to the entrance! And before you think I'm totally nuts for going to a zoo in the winter whatever the temperature, I'll just tell you that there are many indoor exhibit spaces that are actually quite warm.)
Instead of zoo trips, however, sketching from a collection of 19th century photos has been a way to distract my mind from the cold.
It always amazes me that without "modern" hairsprays the women can get their hair piled up so high and wide on their heads. It's a mystery to me.
The other thing I want to say about this sketch is that while there are bits about it that I'm not fond of (like the eye placement) I'm absolutely thrilled with the negative space, particularly that narrow bit on the recto page that wraps up and around the hair and promises the eye so much more, in that zone off the page where we can't see, but where our eye and brain in unison tell us reality exists. Reality.
Have fun cropping your sketches this weekend—play with negative space. Find models past and present with wonderful hair!