174. Those Intricate Lines

Drawing tone using a crumbly medium like graphite or charcoal, or a viscous medium like paint is one thing. Trying to render believable tone using lines is something else altogether.


Take a look at the build up of tone on this one for instance. It's a victorian wood etching. (Click to see how the lines actually achieve it.)


If you study the picture you will see that:

1. The drapery has directional lines to lead the eye over the flow of the garment.

2. Shadows have hatching to allow for dense shadow. Observe the far right of the umbrella and you will see how cleverly the artist uses directional lines again to indicate the curvature.

3. How the horizontal broken lines create ominous masses in the background sky.

4. How the paper white creates that flash of lightning, lighting up the ball on the wall above, and the edges og the umbrella.

5. Don't miss that poor, wet, miserable dog. Picked out of the background with it's own contour.

So many little techniques come together to create a wonderfully engaging piece.


(And the special treat in these drawings for those who participated in the Whiter than white assignment. Now you know why the white highlights in the drawing look brighter than the paper white, even though it's the same thing! Awesome isn't it?)


So there's the theme for today folks.To carefully study these victorian master artists and learn from the renderings. When you're ready, go ahead and render a beauty of a line drawing. Astonish us all.


Here a few more by the same artist, Adelaide Claxton.



OWF23.jpgAnd some others I found on the net...














Quite dense and different in style, but still a beaut...




And plenty more here...





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  • Thank you very much, Prabha

    I like to draw all kind of things that call my attention about this world.

    I think I'm a lucky man for counting with those guides of the yellow rectangle... :)

  • Thanks Prabha!
  • Thanks, Prabha and Asma.
  • This is Copy of Edward Gorey's work,with little changes

    Boy with Maa,10x8'',indian ink,2011.tif.jpg

    • That does look like Gorey's work! Very well done.
    • Thanks George for the encouragement!
    • Lovely. This would fit so beautifully in a child's story book. Very nice.
    • Thanks Asma!
    • especially I like the two figures
    • Thanks Manu! Some times You are the inspiration!
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