Don’t see. Don’t speak. | a sketchbook painting

DON'T SEE. DON'T SPEAK. portrait with hand print
the finished painting

Here’s a piece that I initially intended to (1) sketch quickly in pencil in the Moleskine, and (2) finish -simply- with red watercolor and my new Micron™ pens– high contrast, no shading.

Instead, it turned into a rather detailed pencil rendering, finished with several layers/workings of watercolor, and only a few lines with a pen (ears, jawline, eyes).

I kinda love the velvety effect of the finished piece. It was really nice to get lost in drawing/painting for a few hours.

It transports me back to the viscera of the Exsanguinations, one and two. Those were completely imaginary, and without lighting reference. More of this exploration is in order.

Watercolor has proven superior to the casein for its transparency, red-wise. (White casein would be a nice highlight moment, though.)


pencil only phase, finished.
pencil only phase, after sprayed with fixative

After the initial pencil drawing was fleshed out, I sprayed a workable fixative over the soft pencil (woodless HB), and scanned it before painting in case of ruination.

after initial layer of watercolor (I downplayed the red in the eyes later)

I scanned it again after getting to where I thought may be finished, but then decided to deepen the blacks. I wasn’t happy with leaving them washed out, as in the above.

I used half pan watercolors. The blacks consisted of a mix of dark grey and black, so I didn’t need a lot of water in the early phases of layering in the dark. I’ve not really worked with watercolor in this way before. The workable fixative was great to retain the integrity of the pencil shading prior to painting.

Full disclosure: I removed the gutter seam in Photoshop in the final for aesthetic’s sake.


Earlier process pics (phone not scanner— sorry about the poor quality)

iPhone snap of pencil beginnings
further pencilling progress

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