Another spread from my Art House Co-op sketchbook, gouache and ink. This is my first tentative step back into gouache, first in the last twenty or so years. Not really much of a gouache piece, just a painted shape with inked line. But as I said, a tentative step.
I'm beginning to wonder whether I'll submit this sketchbook, may decide to keep it in my own collection. The way this Co-op thing works is you pay a fee to receive a sketchbook, simply a small plain Moleskin Cahier which has thin paper, not the best surface for ink. Then after you fill it up, you send it back in to be displayed at their Brooklyn library gallery.
I bolstered the thin paper with a coating of white gouache so that my brush pen ink wouldn't bleed through. This caused some wrinkling which affected the line quality in spots, interesting accidents, nervous broken lines. I also tried applying colored tissue with wheat starch glue, ala Eric Carle, but the paper was so thin that the wrinkling got a bit out of hand. So I mainly just stuck to simple gouache and ink throughout.
I reduced the palette in Photoshop (Image>Mode>Index Color) down to three colors—black, pink, and white—which transformed the lighter gray paper wrinkles into pink. So the pink line through the dog's mouth is actually the shadow created by the gutter of the sketchbook.
My intention was to draw a ferocious, snarling dog, but he turned out kind of happy, maybe influenced by the pink gouache.
So I've worked through my cycling angst and have moved on to a new friendlier illustration for the Local/Euro exhibit. Here is the process so far, still some things to resolve like the mustache, the background, and some additional line work here and there. But I'm hoping to begin printing this tomorrow. The idea for this one is a combining of the mustache with bicycle wheels. The rider has multiple mustaches, each twirled into a wheel. In the background, where the wheels are now, will be a pattern of bicycles.
The basis for this portrait is an 1895 photo of Paul R. Clauss, a famous rubgy footballer from Scotland, reference found here.
Below is the line drawing from the photo reference, with additional mustaches, eyebrows, and eyes.
Below is the photo-sketch, combining the reference photo with the thumbnail sketch.
Below is the rough thumbnail concept sketch.