Day 17 #100horsesbyroxanne

I repeated yesterday's exercise but instead used charcoal to create an expressive tonal drawing of a horse's head.

Charcoal is one of my favourite materials to use both alone and in mixed media paintings and drawings. It has a completely different texture to graphite and I adore the beautiful deep, matt blacks you can create with it. There are a few types of charcoal that come in a variety forms.

Willow charcoal usually comes in sticks which vary in thicknesses and is made by burning sticks from a willow tree. It's soft, light, brittle and easy to erase. Compressed charcoal on the other hand is much darker and can comes in sticks or in pencil form. It's made by combining charcoal powder with a binder of gum, wax or oil. It's much harder and blacker than willow charcoal which also means it's harder to erase.  

I often use a combination of both willow and compressed charcoal. I find that the willow is easier to smudge to create a 'ground' to work upon and the compressed whether in stick or pencil form is brilliant for detail and very dark areas. In today's piece I used a combo of willow charcoal and compressed charcoal pencil. Willow charcoal is fabulous for picking out highlights with an eraser and is quite forgiving if you make a mistake but compressed charcoal not so much. 

I really enjoyed creating this one and could feel my mojo starting to come back! 🤩


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