Jul 10, 2007

Shadows


While drawing in Bologna I learned something new. Italy is all about shadows. No other place I've encountered has ever been quite like this. First, the streets are so narrow that only a small car can pass through. Every building has tons of green shutters hanging beside every window. They are always in various stages of open and close. There are ledges everywhere too. When I would sit to draw at say eleven o'clock in the morning, by eleven fifteen what I was drawing had already changed dramatically. At first this really threw me for a loop but I realized I could turn it to my advantage. I usually crosshatch my shadows on buildings and objects. It is a lot of work but I do it because the end result is so impressive. I found I couldn't do this in Bologna because the sun wouldn't cooperate. So I began to do something new. I would take an hour and draw a building and color it in but I would leave out the shadows. I would return to the exact spot the next day at a time that I had seen the shadows looking best. Then I would take ten minutes and fill in the shadows only. I love the end result and learned a new trick. I don't have to crosshatch into oblivion in order to make my sketches look top notch.
Another blog in Italy is showing my work. Check it out here.

13 comments:

brian nelson said...

I really love this one! It really captures some of the memories that I have of Italy! Awesome!

spacedlaw said...

I don't do much street drawings anymore but I recognize the shadow thing that you describe from when I go out with my camera. It's like the sun here is on speed or something similar. That picture needs to be taken there and then or not.

Tommy Kane said...

Italy is as good as it gets for drawing on the street.

MIguel Herranz said...

I know what you mean, and in this case Bologna is perfect because there are not top famous places or monuments (of which you have a previous idea an some expectations) but just the beauty of the city itself.
Take a look at
http://www.flickr.com/photos/mherranz/sets/72157600840396510/
there are some photos froma a walk on the center of Bologna taken some days ago with a similar approach.

Tommy Kane said...

Man if anyone wants to know what Bologna is like go to Miguel's flickr site. Great photos.

Linda said...

Tommy Kane! Man of the world! Drawing on the streets of Italy! How cool is that?

;-)

Claudia said...

A wonderful drawing!! It captures the spirit of Bologna perfectly well. (I have been there various times; at least, I'm not living too far away;-))

Tommy Kane said...

There will be many more drawings of Bologna to come. I've made so many new friends in Italy. What a great place.

a r n e l said...

Thanks, Tom, for your kind words on my graphics blog. Would you consider a link swap?
I've been to your blog a few times the last couple of days (I found it through Russell Stutler's Sketch Forum) and I love your style. That's why your in my blogroll...

Tommy Kane said...

I give you a link swap arnel. Just leave me your website address. I'm having trouble getting back to it.

a r n e l said...

That's easy, Tom. Just click my name (in blue) and it takes you to my blog http://everypicture.blogspot.com
And thanks for the swap.

In case you mind need it: my email...
everypicture@advalvas.be

a r n e l said...

"mind" should read "might" ...

Stephanieswbn said...

Italy is as good as it gets for drawing on the street.