Day 31 #100horsesbyroxanne

I was going to start looking at the anatomy of the horse's body today and move the focus away from the head. However, I really wanted to experiment with some Indian ink so I followed the urge and went with it 😎

I began by laying down the foundational detail of the horse in fine liner pen. I find that pens are great to use if I'm wanting to loosen up my drawing because I cannot erase what I've done. It requires me to look more conscientiously at my subject and to apply a definite line to the paper, which in turn can help me achieve more accuracy. Working in pen can take some getting used to as the fear of making a mistake sets in but over time this fear dissipates with practice. 

The next stage of the drawing was to lay down a quick, loose, light wash in black Indian ink. Once dry I then went back in and started to pick out some of the details including the main light and dark areas. I find it best to establish these first before going into anymore detail. To achieve the brighter parts I did two things, I allowed the lightness of the Indian ink to shine through which gave a transparent effect and in other parts used white pastel to produce a solid, more three-dimensional look. The shaded areas were a combination of charcoal and graphite. 

I think today's drawing has been very much about learning when to stop. So often I'm hindered by detail which can sometimes strangle any form of expression I'm trying to achieve in a piece of work. And, most often than not the initial stage I was really happy with gets so overworked that it ends up being a real struggle to get it back to the stage I really loved. So, today I made the conscious decision to stop, take stock at what I'd done and decided to leave it as it was and I'm so bloomin' pleased I did! 😊 You can suggest so much with just a few simple lines, as I've done here with the horse's legs. Detail doesn't have to be everything. 

I've been inspired by realistic, figurative art since I was a child. I only have to look at the work of the Pre-Raphaelite artists of the nineteenth to remind myself of this passion. However, over the years my appreciation for other styles of art has inevitably broadened but the fact still remains that realism is very much at the forefront of what I do. My mission now is to find my own voice, a way of merging realism with my interest in the abstract. Having drawn and painted in such detail for so many years navigating this path is going to be hard work. It's going to take many hours of drawing and painting, creating work which I'm not happy with (and hopefully creating work I WILL be happy with) and making lots of mistakes but that's what being an artist is all about; the process, the failings, the successes, the showing up everyday. All of this is part and parcel of what it is to be an artist. It's not an easy ride and it's very hard work but it's being on this amazing rollercoaster journey that gets me out of bed each day. 🤩

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