Project 2 – Exercise 3 – Experiment with Mixed Media

This time I did take lots of photographs before I started drawing.   See sketchbook for photo.  Also I became particularly interested in what the background should be and was thinking about patterned fabric.   Bought a number of 50s & 60s fabrics on Ebay to use.   Find these very evocative and the objects I chose also seem to depict different decades in my life.

Project 2 exercise3 finding still life final

Having originally placed these by a window I felt that there was too much going on and ended up back on the table viewed from above.

Project 2 Exercise 3 Mixed Media 1

Worked with markers, chalk on a pastel paper.   The design of the fabric is fighting with the objects.   I have allowed myself to loosely depict the fabric by concentrating on the pattern effect. Not really successful .   Feel however the movement of the girls dancing by not working in too detailed a fashion.

Project 2 - exercise 3 mixed media 2

Pink pastel paper with a white watercolour wash.  Used oil pastels, ball point pen and markers. This is another drawing where it would work much better in a square format.  I like the texture of the oil pastels but as yet are finding them hard to work with. Maybe it is the size of the work making detail difficult to define.   But the ball point pen unexpectedly adds something particularly for the African head and the dog.

Project 2 - Exercise 3 - mixed media 3

Oil pastels on black paper. Could work but head not well drawn.   On reflection the composition of jut the 3 objects is good – I like the tightness.Background too scribbly and distracting.

Project 2 Exercise 3 - mixed media 4

White paper pre-drawn with water soluble crayons and then water added and left to dry overnight. Had moved the composition around and guess what makes a square!  Overworked in more wax crayon, chalks, drawing pen, and tipp-ex.

What I like:

  • The density
  • The variety of mark making
  • The opacity of the African head and dog

What I don’t think works:

  • The composition
  • Sylvester
  • Everything is floating
  • Background material

Project 2 - Exercise 3 - mixed media 5

Tried again for being more defined?

Paper worked in coloured inks and left to dry over night. Worked with oil pastels, drawing ink, pencil.

Felt a bit more in control of the oil pastels and like their density. The background is still unresolved and the objects are still floating.   Is this a good or bad thing?   The relative size of the objects is not correct but resolves some of the issues caused by the dominance of Sylvester’s black and white.


Making choices in relation to materials to use is hard and deciding on what order to work on in the drawing is confusing.   Some of the drawings would have worked better if I had thought through the different stages, may be make a list of the stages I need to work through.   I am still tending to “go at” drawings in a spontaneous manner and am learning that I need to slow down the thinking.

Am caught between how realistic, perfect drawing I need to achieve versus keeping the drawing lively, interesting and felt.

This is a good link to the next monochrome exercise…..