Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Day 23: August Hunt
August Hunt (2004) Pencils, ink and gouache on bristol board.
Final composition of this piece, most of the comments are the same for the structure. However, the colorwork presented its own problems and challenges.
I had to match the two different blues in the arc of sky, and the gilding of the figures had to be done after the underpainting, so I referenced the pencil composition and the original work (which I was intentionally imitating) at every brushstroke. I had some difficulty with the lake and the stream, and I'm still not completely pleased with them. The rest of the landscape was fairly straightforward to color, as I've done many landscapes in gouache and watercolor, some of which I even like.
While the horses may seem clumsy, when compared to the original manuscript illustration, they are stylistically identical, and seemed, in the original, to have been created from templates. A typical technique involved pouncing powdered pigment through a pinpricked template to create a stylistically standard underdrawing. This enabled the master to concentrate on the fine colorwork, and his apprentices to do the bulk of the layout work without constant supervision, and without affecting the continuity of the piece.
I did not use pouncing to transfer the pencils to the final board, I used pressure transfer and overdrawing of the penciled design, as I did not wish to destroy the pencilled sheet.
The horses were colored from photographs of real horses belonging to the owner of the piece and her closest friend. The dogs are drawn from life - one is a breed standard pug, and the other is a pug mix, with a long snout. The owner does, indeed, possess brilliant red har.