Pencil Sketch By Otto F. Langmann, Old Houses, Watts Street, New York City.
Pencil Study For A Mural Painting By Barry Faulkner.
This brings us to another method of combining pencil and color, one which is perhaps less commonly used but which offers at the same time opportunity for excellent results, especially in the making of quick sketches. In this method the object pictured is outlined in pencil in the usual way and washes of water color are added, much as would be done in making the regular sort of water-color sketch. When the general tones have been thus obtained, a pencil which will give a dull line is selected and used for adding accents and finishing touches: - usually this is black but sometimes one or more colored pencils prove more effective. These need not, of course, be proof against water as they are not employed until the surface is dry. The two delightful sketches of interiors by Mr. Otto R. Eggers, on pages 142 and 143. Chapter IX (Interiors And Furniture), Part II, were touched up with lithographic pencil after the washes were applied, thus illustrating the method just described. A similar method offers a means of improving such portions of water-color renderings as become muddy, losing their crispness and directness, for under such conditions a few touches or accents of colored pencil or crayon or pastel often do much towards overcoming the difficulties and securing the desired effect. There are, in fact, numerous ways of combining water color and colored pencils pleasingly, washes being sometimes applied over the pencil work, in contrast to the method just mentioned. Occasionally ink lines are added to these others, in fact very effective results can be obtained on tinted paper by sketching in the forms with brown ink, next adding a few washes of color, finally touching up the whole with crisp strokes of black or colored pencils.
Colored pencils alone produce pleasing results also, especially if used on tinted paper or board, and a very satisfactory combination is gray or buff board, brown ink, one or two colored pencils and a white pencil or Chinese white.
So numerous are the possibilities of thus employing several mediums in one sketch that we cannot hope to describe them all here, - in fact, words fail to convey an adequate impression of such subtleties of tone and color, so we must leave the student to perform his own experiments and arrive at his own results. Before closing, though, just another word regarding papers and some of the mediums best suited to special surfaces.
The kid-finish bristol board such as we have previously recommended for pencil work takes light tints nicely and does not warp badly if the entire surface of the sheet is first wet with water. If it should buckle out of shape in spite of this precaution it may be thoroughly dampened after the rendering is entirely completed, and put to press for a few hours between two drawing boards held together with weights. Thin drawing papers are best if mounted before the washes are applied. Then even if they do wrinkle somewhat as they are dampened, they will dry back into shape. Some grades of tracing paper are excellent for wash work if floated or stretched beforehand, or if used without stretching they permit of interesting results of another kind, for if quite thin, colored pencils may be effectively used on the back of the paper, just as is frequently done in preparing house plans, thus permitting the color to show through, or delicate tones of pastel may be rubbed on the front, accented with as many pencil lines as seem necessary. Another useful fact is that regardless of how white in appearance tracing paper may seem to be, Chinese white will always stand out against it distinctly, hence it is useful for highlights. One of the most effective kinds of quick sketches is made by first outlining the masses with brown ink on tracing paper, next pencilling the darker tones in black or such a color as conditions seem to demand, finally adding Chinese white on the lighter portions. Brown ink is recommended for such purposes rather than black as the lines seem less hard and mechanical and harmonize because of their color with the other mediums, and at the same time better represent the hues of such materials as brick, tile, timber work, etc., which are often of a color similar to that of the ink itself.
The illustrations accompanying this chapter show some of the combinations here described but it should be understood that in the processes of reproduction the effect of the originals is somewhat changed, this being especially true of the tints of the papers on which the drawings are made. The three sketches on Figure 49 were all done by the same method on a charcoal paper of a greenish gray hue. This paper was allowed to represent the middle values while the dark tones were made with a black pencil which was purchased as one of a set of colored pencils. The white was done for the most part with pencil, too, being added gradually as the work progressed, but as it proved difficult to keep the point sufficiently sharp for the finer detail some finishing touches of Chinese white were done with a brush, especially in the drawing of the church. The size of the original sheet is 9 3/4"x13 1/2" Figure 50, below, was drawn on a light gray mat board, being first laid out instrumentally from the plan at a scale of 3/16" to the foot, then rubbed down with an eraser and rendered with a black pencil giving a dull line. Two washes of water were next applied, brushed well into the pencilled portions each time, as the lines had a tendency to resist or shed the water. Then washes of ivory black were added to the roof, shutters, foliage, etc., and to the shadow tones, after which Chinese white was applied sparingly for the high lights. The white should always be the last thing used in such a case, as it is almost impossible to pass any washes over it without causing messy results. This whole sketch was very quickly done as it measures only 7 1/2"x10 1/2". The charming sketch by Mr. Otto F. Langmann on page 167. presenting a bit of old New York, was drawn in lithographic pencil on a thin, ivory-tinted Japanese paper of fibrous texture. The drawing by Barry Faulkner on page 168 is reproduced from one of his pencil studies for a series of mural paintings forming a continuous landscape around the dining room of the city residence of Mr. Richard Hlenry Dana, Jr.
The list below is given to show at a glance some of the uses of pencil and some of the most effective combinations of various mediums as used in conjunction with it, and though it is by no means complete it may suggest to the student some ideas for his own experiments.
1. Black pencils or crayons of various sorts on white papers.
2. Black pencils or crayons with washes of gray added.
3. Black pencils or crayons with washes of color added.
4. Black pencils or crayons on tinted papers.
5. Black pencils or crayons on tinted papers with highlights added.
6. Black pencils or crayons on tinted papers with washes of gray, with or without highlights.
7. Same as "6" but with washes of color.
8. Colored pencils or crayons on white or tinted paper.
9. Same as "<8" combined with wash or color.
10. Combinations of black, white and colored pencils or crayons on white or tinted paper.
11. Same as "10" with wash or color added.
12. Combinations of pencils with ink or with ink and wash or color on white or tinted paper.
Figure 50. A Sketch on Colored Paper, Done in Pencil and Wash, with Chinese White Sparingly Used.