At the centre of your being you have the answer, you know who you are and you know what you want ~ Lao Tzu

Friday, March 25

Friday Not-So-Fun: EDM challenge no. 15

Draw a tree or trees, leaves or branches

Well, my first attempt at what I now realize is a serious challenge... I thought humans were difficult - trees are not any easier!!
I soooo wanted to capture the essence of this magnolia. They are one of my favourite trees and I was so excited to see we have one in the garden (we moved into this house last August and I can only recognize a magnolia in its pre-leaf stage, as here).

[NOTE: the truncated branches are thanks to Nick's winter 'pruning', i.e. brutal hacking off limbs!! Thankyou, Pooja for noticing that :) ]
If the challenge of the tree wasn't enough, drawing outside is hard. Obviously, with my mobility issues, it was a challenge to get safely outside with my sketchbook and pencils, but once sat on a patio chair I was fine, and away I went... But then, by the time I'd finished the first light sketch, the sun had already moved! And trying to keep track of which line is tree and which is shadow... oh boy!

Still, as I said after my first attempt at drawing human figures, I need to keep trying and trusting I'll improve - eventually...

I'd really appreciate any feedback, especially re. the shadows on the tree itself and the fence. I can see it's not right, but can't verbalize how and where, can you??


Barbara B said...

I think you've got a convincing outline. I'd say the only thing lacking is a range of values from light to dark. Some very delicate shading at first, going gradually darker and darker as you build up to the deepest shadows would be one way to approach it. I'd have to give it a try with my non-dominant hand to see how it goes. As far as the changing light goes, that's a problem with plein air work. If you take a photo you can always finish inside when you have the time.

Peachtreeart said...

Commendable to see your edms! Afraid I'm usually not motivated or unsure I have something unique to contribute!

Sandra said...

You were brave to try a shadow. Big lesson-you'd better be fast!

Janene said...

I think you have done a good job at getting the structure of the tree and the shadow is well done. I agree with Barbara about the shading. I would say the trunk and branches need some shading so they look more 3D rather than flat. You started on the branch on the right, and that looks nicely rounded, now the other branches need shading too. Perhaps you could take a reference photo at the same time of day that you did the sketch to help you see where to shade.

raena said...

Oh yes, those shadows do move fast, don't they! One thing I do that might help you: Draw the outline of the tree first, along with any cross-contours. When you feel you are reasonably done, then attack the shadows. Doing the shadows as you go will most definitely result in shadows that are not consistently from the same angle. You are doing great though. Exceptional really, for using your non-dom hand.