Sunday 27 March 2016

Experimenting further with water soluble graphite sticks ( CAMLIN )

Since I am enjoying the newly discovered water soluble graphite medium, I decided to create a
few more landscapes with forests, mountains etc and in every small little study work, I tried out
something different. Some experiments work and some don't and I make it a point to jot down
my learning experience underneath in the little space so that when I am browsing through it in
future I will know about MY TRIALS and THINGS THAT I MUST AVOID DOING. It helps.

For instance, I overdid the layers in one of the study works in my regular sketch book, and was
not too happy with the results. So I mentioned "Overworked" alongside.

Working with graphite sticks has made me realise that the more simple I keep it, the better it looks and I need to STOP working on my art at a particular time. In the final layer, in some of the sketches
I have used a normal 6B graphite pencil to increase the value by creating darker strokes.

water soluble Camlin graphite stick 4B, sharpened at the tip.

The 4B Camlin graphite stick
which I have sharpened at the tip.

Experimenting with water soluble graphite sticks to create landscape study works, By Manju Panchal

Landscape study works created using
Camlin water soluble graphite sticks
on Cartridge sheets.

It is fun to work with water soluble graphite BUT I am definitely missing using a sharp pencil
like tip. Hence when I visit ART LOUNGE next week to do my art stationery shopping, I am 
definitely going to buy some good brand of water soluble graphite pencil. I have already 
mentioned about the art sale that is on presently at ART LOUNGE which is situated close to
Churchgate station.

Wednesday 23 March 2016

Using water soluble graphite sticks by Camlin ( 2B, 4B, 6B )

I mentioned in my last post about the water soluble graphite sticks from Camlin that I 
purchased recently from ART STATION. It has three broad diameter graphite sticks ie 2B, 
4B and 6B. The tip is pretty blunt and difficult to use for strokes, so I have sharpened the 4B 
stick for creating sharp strokes.

using water soluble graphite sticks by Camlin

For a better understanding of a new medium or art stationery, I safely go to creating small
study works in my sketching book which has cartridge sheets. I have written about this book
earlier too. It is available for Rs 65/- at ART STATION, is convenient to use and carry.

Small sketch book with cartridge sheets used for study works by Manju Panchal

Small travel sketch book
with cartridge sheets.

This is my third sketch book and I plan to buy many more. Using the water soluble graphite sticks
I created many different landscape sketches and I am posting four of them as below. Study
sketches ( 4"X 5") mean a lot to me as I get to understand the new medium, the techniques
that I can use. I get to experiment on small works so that when I plan to prepare a larger work 
I know for sure the strokes that will work. Also I get to develop my own style.

What I enjoyed about using the water soluble graphite sticks is that I get to involve myself in the
water colour painting technique as well as the tonal study work which happens brilliantly with
graphite on white paper. As a preliminary work before starting a bigger work, this will definitely
help. In other words I am getting addicted to this medium.

Small landscape study works created using water soluble graphite sticks by Camlin. By Manju Panchal

Small landscape study works created using
water soluble graphite sticks by Camlin.

Water soluble Graphite sticks can be used in the following ways, ( From my experience )
  • Create sketch and run a wet brush over it.
  • While the sketch is wet, create more strokes with dry tip of graphite stick. ( you get darker strokes )
  • The graphite tip can be made wet by dipping in water and it can be applied on dry paper.
  • Once the first layer is dry more sketching can be done to create different values and again a wet brush can be applied on it.
  • In the final layers, few strokes of dark graphite can be created and left as it is, which will give the landscape its texture at places where it is required ex trees, mountains and rocks etc.
Graphite soluble pencils are also sold by other brands like CRETACOLOUR, WINSOR and NEWTON , KOH_I_NOOR etc. I may want to purchase a set of pencils later but will do so
after reading a lot of reviews by other artists. As of now for the price that I got CAMLIN graphite sticks, I am pretty happy using it.

Sunday 20 March 2016

Exposed roots - A study work on Canson Mi Teintes paper

I came across this tree when I last visited Karnala Bird Sanctuary. It is a fairly simple 
composition and I have used a beige coloured Canson Mi Teintes paper this time for a 
change. The colour of the paper acts as the mid tone value. The brightest shade is achieved
by using the white pastel pencil and the darker shades are obtained by scribbling with 
Camlin and General soft charcoal pencil.

I have done little blending at places but mostly used the pencil strokes to achieve the bark
effect. I do these works very often and call them study works because everytime I do one of 
these I try out some different stroke or effect in an attempt to evolve my technique and to learn something further.

Charcoal and white pastel sketching of tree trunk on Canson paper, By Manju Panchal

Charcoal and pastel study work.
Size 5" X 7" 

In my last post I wrote about having purchased the water soluble graphite sticks by Camlin
I am posting an image of the same below ( Courtesy )

Camlin water soluble graphite sticks.

The pack has three graphite broad diameter sticks. I would have preferred something thinner as creating strokes can get difficult with these. So the next better option was to sharpen the tip of 
one of these. I have used it to create few thumbnail sketches which I will be posting soon.

When I see a new product such as this, I buy it off instantly because if it works good with
me and my kind of works then I know I can incorporate it along with some other medium later.
I think I can combine this with my normal graphite pencil to create small forest sketches. It is
a THOUGHT PROCESS which may eventually work out. Trying out new materials and techniques is a great way of challenging oneself and I truly enjoy doing these things.

Thanks for browsing.

Saturday 19 March 2016

Back to ART and BLOGGING after a long break.

It feels good to be back at art and blogging after a long break. I have been busy travelling and
attending to a lot more personal work.

After a break, I always restart with my artwork with charcoal medium. It is almost like 
getting into basics once again. The tonal value study, and use of just few tools makes it a lot 
easier too. I am doing a tree trunk with exposed roots on toned paper ( Trying out a new
colour this time instead of the regular grey ) which will complete by tomorrow.

In the meantime I am posting a soft pastel work which I completed last month but did not get 
time to post it. It is with reference to a beautiful photograph taken by my friend's niece at 
Florence falls, Melbourne. The photograph reminded me so much of Langkawi, which had 
similar rocks and atmosphere. 

Soft pastel painting of scene at Florence falls, Melbourne. By Manju Panchal

At Florence Falls, Melbourne
Soft pastel painting on Canson paper
Size 6" X 8"

Art Lounge, the art stationery shop at Churchgate is holding its annual sale from 17th of this
month and this will continue till may be the 16th of next month. I visit Art Lounge every year
for my Canson Mi Teintes paper which I use a lot for my soft pastel work. Unfortunately it is
not available at ART STATION which is a shop close to my place.

Like any other artist I have a big collection of art materials at my place be it brushes, pastels,
charcoals or papers. Despite this fact I would still visit the sale for the following

General soft charcoal pencil
General soft white pastel pencil
Canson Mi Teintes paper (  Grey and black shade )
Koh-I-Noor individual soft pastels ( Vandyke brown, few greens and blues )
Water soluble graphite ( I have recently started using this and it is lot of fun )
Canson water colour paper ( Want to try it out )
Canson c a grain paper ( I use this for my charcoal works )
General charcoal powder ( Have read good reviews about it so may buy it this time )

Certain things that I buy is a one time investment. For example the charcoal powder by General
comes in a big bottle so I may not have to buy it for a long long time. This year, Art Lounge is
also selling some premium quality water colour brushes like ESCODA, Winsor and Newton etc
so I may have a look around at them too.

Charcoal powder by General

The charcoal powder jar by