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Hair Sheep in Graphite & Colored Pencil


The story behind the sketch:

The painting-out season is nearing an end, so I was looking through photos from the various locations where my artist’s group has met this year. I found a really good photo that my friend Karin had taken at one of the farms, the subject’s being what is known as a Hair Sheep, according to the owner. Basically, this is a “self-shaving sheep”.

my experience in doing this sketch:

Well, it was a bit of a struggle! The wool and skin were the same color, so it was hard to visually separate the the two. I ended up making the wool darker than it really was to remedy this.

The second problem came from working on cream-colored paper; it’s okay for some subjects, but it does make it harder to get a strong contrast between lights and darks. To get the sunny look I was after, I needed intense darks, & no matter what grade of graphite pencil I used I just couldn’t get them. I finally resorted to using a black Prismacolor pencil,—– & called the drawing “done”.

The technical stuff:

3-B pencil was used to sketch-in the rough outlines, with just about every grade of pencil between & including 9B , with the addition of a black Prismacolor pencil. ( For those of you unfamiliar with Prismacolors, they are wax-based pencils that are relatively soft, and very nice to work with, the colors being more intense than the colored pencils you probably used as a kid.)

NOTE: All images and text in this post are Copyright K. A. Renninger 2011. I am more than happy to have you share them through your own blog, and hope you will do so—but you must give me credit. Anyone who uses them to make money will be prosecuted.