Washing color inks

I’ve been wanting to use color inks on location, but still haven’t found a practical way to take my inks around. I would love to have separate pen brushes, but apparently the ink would clog the brushes.

This was actually a color test done with Higgins inks with a Cotman brush; then the random blots remembered me of a plaza in Old San Juan and from memory sketched over the washes with a dip pen with black ink. It’s not close to the real thing, but it was a fun exercise. I need to somehow get those colors to the field.


Charcoal it is

This past Saturday my wife and I decided to do some sketching with charcoal. We stacked a few apples by a glass vase with daisies on our dining table. I can count with my fingers the times I had done compressed charcoal before, but nonetheless this was a fun and interesting exercise.


Some sketches from last week

Here are a couple sketches I did last week in Old San Juan. The first one was done with pencil and watercolor, the second was done with a Sharpie, water soluble graphite and watercolors. Both were done on a cheap, 8.5 x 11 Mead Academie sketchbook.




Today I went sketching to the GalerĂ­a Nacional in Old San Juan, where my friends Vladimir Garcia and Doel Fresse have set up a very interesting and attractive exposition called “Revuelo”; they covered the building’s courtyard with 450 pink kites, beautifully contrasting with the bright blue sky and the colonial architecture.

I went larger than usual, using a 10″x 15″ watercolor pad. I used a magenta waterproof drawing ink for the kites and did the rest with watercolors, washing freely over the ink. I also did a few experiments with other media, such as markers and pastel pencil; maybe later I’ll post them.

Before heading home, I purchased a souvenir pink kite to remember the event. Apparently I’m the first person that buys it. I must say that sales are not the strength of the employees there… It’s none of their business to tell visitors they think the kites are expensive. Its not that I didn’t know how much they were, as Vlad had sent me a message earlier this week. Imagine a waiter saying he thinks a dish is too expensive…

Anyways, here is my Revuelo:

Sketching @Pier 4, Old San Juan

I had wanted to sketch a ship for a while now, and today finally got the chance. This was done with a double ended Sharpie and watercolors with a waterbrush.