Croc Revisited

Pencil drawing of a Croc shoe.
7.5” x 7.5”, drawn in a Moleskin Sketchpad with a Blackwing Pearl pencil.

I just love France Van Stone! Remember the Croc I posted on the 17th? I wasn’t very satisfied with it and wrote about why. Today she recommended I draw it five times on the same sheet of paper and allow only twenty minutes to do it. I drew it three times on the same sheet because I only had a square Moleskine Sketchpad available. Three was all I could fit. I timed each one at twenty-five minutes, twenty-one minutes and thirty-five minutes.

The first was in ballpoint and once again did not cut the mustard. The second was in pencil and a wee bit better. The third was also in pencil and was by far the best of the three. But I spent thirty-five minutes on it!

7.5” x 7.5”, drawn in a Moleskine Sketchpad with a ballpoint and pencil.

So I went for a quick ride on the bicycle to let my brain solve this for me. Upon returning, I decided to draw the thing again as fast as I could without specific concern for crosshatching per se . The result was about like #2 above. However, only fourteen minutes were spent. Hmmm…I said to myself, ”Stop futzing with crosshatching and just draw the dang thing you head case!”. The result was the drawing you see up top. Fast and loose with no overthinking about crosshatching. Crosshatching with ink is a new technique for me right now and admittedly I’ve yet to get the synapses to totally latch on to it in a speedy fashion with acceptable results. So I decided to just hit the nitrous switch on that Blackwing Pearl and burrrrn graphite the only way I knew how. I was smellin’ smoke by the time I completed it and you could boil coffee on my adrenal glands!

Granted, you may not be in agreement, but considering how little time it took, I think it looks proportionately better than all the others, is more expressive and way less tight. I’m gonna call it a breakthrough and give the inspirational credit to France for putting the bug in my mind to draw it five times in one session. The exercise flipped a switch inside my crusty ol’ brain that is exciting! I can see where approaching every sketch with a focus on speedy shape capture and rapid shading at the same time is ultimately going to lay down those electrical, synaptic pathways in such a way that twenty minute sketches are easily attainable.

Many thanks to France Van Stone!🙂 Now you know why I just love her!