Tenerife sketch (the one and only)


This is the only sketch I made in Tenerife, whilst having a coffee in the piazza of Garachico, a pretty little town that just survived a volcanic eruption in the 18th century. It’s not that Tenerife isn’t picturesque, it is in many ways, but we were out walking in high country most of the week and I just didn’t have the time or extra energy to sit down and draw.

Life class on Tuesday

We had a wonderful model again, a young woman we had a few weeks ago. She can keep a pose as if she were a statue yet can wander about as if she had just been to the gym during breaks. if I keep still for five minutes, I seize up like clothes-peg puppet.



Tuesday night life class

One long pose again, but this time I moved around to get two views. Other people are surprised by how fast I draw. I in turn am always surprised by how slow most others are. I would get bored. It  doesn’t take that long to cover a sheet of paper with marks, which is all that is really happening. The tricky bit is getting the right marks in the right place. Extra time doesn’t help.


This was the first. Outlined in light pencil and then gone over with charcoal, with a lot of rubbing and rubbing out. Just a little colour here and there. Generally I’m pleased but I am not that keen on smooth finishes, which rubbed charcoal tends to give.


The second sketch, from behind, was sketched in lightly with blue pencil Then I went over it with a Pentel brush pen. I have never used one before so I am not too displeased with the first go. A long way from Matisse or Rembrandt, but one can dream.

Getting ready for a holiday


We are going to go to Tenerife for a few days with the hopes of getting a bit of winter sun and warmth. I’ve never been to the Canaries before, so  looking forward to it. I’ve bought myself a new sketchbook to take. It is one of teh “Hand Book” sketchbooks, made in Kansas I think, and they really are amongst the best. I have a fetish for sketch books and have just about every type, Leather bound Indian ones with slightly dubious paper, leather Italian ones, which are not great for watercolour, Moleskin watercolour books, which are really pretty good, and thick Cornellisen ones, with top class thick watercolour paper, but they are really quite bulky to carry around. Not sure they make them any more. I have also tried A4 sized books, but again, they are too big to just always have with you. I’ve baptised this one with a sketch map of Tenerife to get me familiar with the island to some extent.

I usually use an enamelled metal watercolour box, but I found that they are rusitng a bit , and the rust is discolouring the paints. I have dug out this old plastic one from the bottom of a drawer and it is hard to fault. Very light and the spaces for the paints are slightly larger than in a metal tine, which means the paints don’t get mixed quite so easily. I will take this and a couple of water brushes and that should do me.