Day 50: Colored pencil mug on a toned gesso background

Yesterday it occurred to me that it might be cool to put down a tinted gesso background in my sketchbook to use my colored pencils on for this week’s mug studies. I wanted to see how working with my white Polychromos would go on gesso.

It turns out it’s kind of like drawing on sandpaper — the tips of my pencils got ground way down for this sketch! And it brought up one of my weird fears: using things up and worrying that they’re being “wasted”. I dislike waste in general, but this fear is so silly because I buy these supplies so I can use them. Plus, when I use something up I get to buy more! As a kid I had a scented eraser collection that I refused to use because if I actually erased things with them they wouldn’t be perfect little shapes anymore. Huh, maybe that’s the underlying issue…perfectionism.

The colored pencil smudges off the acrylic gesso pretty easily, so I left the opposing page blank so it wouldn’t become a total mess. I used my greyscale value card to estimate what the toned background would be value-wise and it looked like about 50% grey, so I used that as my benchmark and left the mid value alone and did the highlights and shadows around it.

Daily Art 09-20-17 mug study in black and white colored pencil on toned gesso background in Canson XL Mix Media sketchbook

I struggled with the upper right corner of the mug, where the lip curves around. That area has been really challenging for me on these studies.

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