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don lee
11-13-2004, 02:10 PM
MY IMAGE(S):
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Critiques/upload_spool/11-13-2004/50588_RIVERMARKET.JPG


GENERAL INFORMATION:
Title: Enigma
Year Created: 2004
Medium: Charcoal
Surface: Paper
Dimension: 10X22
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

MY COMMENTS:
Charcoal and white conte.

WIP. I was drawn to this lovely young lady's unreadable expression as she sat in the shadows of an awning. I did the initial sketch of her face very quickly, then later re-drew that on this larger surface in an attempt to recapture the moment when she glanced to her left, with the light and shadow spilling across her face.

I worked without her knowledge, so very quickly. I don't know if that is ethical (probably not), but what an expression.

So, I've worked to make some sort of composition out of it, but I don't know.

MY QUESTIONS FOR THE GROUP:
Leave it alone? Try to finish it?

This is one of my "frustrating" stages in a piece, so I would welcome any and all input on this.

Gilberte
11-13-2004, 04:54 PM
Just thinking ...
Just wondering ...

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Nov-2004/9813-50588_RIVERMARKET.jpg

but anywhere you want to go will be interesting. :wink2:

Crisis
11-13-2004, 06:00 PM
I would leave it as it is. Crop some of the bottom, but leave a fair amount of blank space. I adds to the uncertainess.

Great title by the way. It leaves the viewer wondering.

Mikey
11-13-2004, 06:31 PM
Don, a very interesting girl. The face has it, and for me anything else musn't detract from that. So I'd want minimal.

Mikey

angela
11-13-2004, 06:34 PM
Her face is perfect!!! I think you should crop off part of the bottom, and leave the unfinished details in her shirt. I love the sketchy look with the finished parts. It fits with the title of the peace and the unreadable expression on her face.

angela
11-13-2004, 06:35 PM
uhhh, i spelled peace wrong.make that piece.

sugar tree gal
11-13-2004, 07:13 PM
I agree with Mikey , the face is what it's about.. :clap: Janice

don lee
11-13-2004, 08:11 PM
Just thinking ...
Just wondering ...

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Nov-2004/9813-50588_RIVERMARKET.jpg

but anywhere you want to go will be interesting. :wink2:

Hello Gilberte,

I was considering that.

Here's the original context, and why I was trying to include that vast expanse of space below;

When I first saw her, she was sitting at a table, partially shadowed by an awning. Her face was startling not only for her beauty, but how she seemed so isolated somehow, almost lost in those shadows above the glaring sunlit tables filled with glasses. I know I'm expressing this poorly, but for some reason, she seemed so vulnerable in those shadows, above that light. That's why I was trying to put her back there. When she turned her head, it was almost like catching the fleeting sight of a doe in the forest, I actually hadn't really seen her before that.

Much appreciate the interest and input.

Don

Darn! Forgot to use the "Quote" button as reference. Sorry.

Well, now I'm spinning in confusion. It seems I did. Again, sorry.

don lee
11-13-2004, 08:20 PM
uhhh, i spelled peace wrong.make that piece.

Angela,

I can understand the substitution. I think Peace is on a lot of minds these days.

Appreciate your comments. She did possess a most bewitching expression. If you would like, I could post the original sketch that this work was based on. Somehow (as usually happens), it comes closer to the truth than this re-draw.

Don

bocote
11-13-2004, 11:01 PM
artistic wondermint. the quick and voyeur type work is interesting. more so. Would like to see it finished just a bit more I think. negative space on right comes to mind and perhaps a little indication of lower part of what is going on.

have fun

MvdLinden
11-14-2004, 01:21 AM
excellence in drafting.

I'd leave it. Not crop it...the empty space hold the enigma as much as her face.

Truly nice work.

jerryW
11-14-2004, 12:37 PM
the uncropped is like a big soft "M" shape of light pushing up into dark
the crop is like a forceful "F" shape of dark establishing itself.
In this I think the soft M works well.
the cropping eliminates areas where the work is less finished, but overall the composition can use the light below.

don lee
11-15-2004, 07:13 AM
artistic wondermint. the quick and voyeur type work is interesting. more so. Would like to see it finished just a bit more I think. negative space on right comes to mind and perhaps a little indication of lower part of what is going on.

have fun

It is voyeuristic, isn't it? Precisely the word I was casting about for. Being a people watcher in general and an admirer of the grace of all women in particular, I accept the assessment as being quite accurate.

Perhaps this is what drew my eye to her in the first place...I must admit that I indulge in fanciful creations of motive and content when I watch people; was she upset? Apprehensive over some personal drama? Her expression could not be read--it was simply beautiful-- an elegant mystery.

If I can FIGURE OUT how to post image follow-ups to previous threads without barging into the system like a darted bull, I will share the progressive steps I have played with to bring this sketch to a conclusion. Our very patient moderator has tried to explain it to me, and I have read the instructions until my eyes have swapped sockets, but I must admit that if I succeed it will be by luck alone.

Did I mention I work with computers for a living?

Appreciate your interest and comments.

Don

katelynalain
11-15-2004, 02:37 PM
this is beautiful so far! i'm looking forward to seeing where you bring the rest of this composition. i wont make suggestions because i think you know best how you want to recreate the scene..but the face is perfect as is! you have skill.

don lee
11-15-2004, 06:50 PM
this is beautiful so far! i'm looking forward to seeing where you bring the rest of this composition. i wont make suggestions because i think you know best how you want to recreate the scene..but the face is perfect as is! you have skill.

Good afternoon Katelyn.

Well, here it is. I recreated the original impression from memory, feeling that models would only clutter the fading mental image I was working from.

The only thing perhaps more expressive than eyes, or a sensual mouth, are for me-- hands. I love to draw them, and selected a slightly recurved line for her right hand, hopefully defining a graceful path to the foreground.

This may cross the line into overworked, as far as my original idea. It comes fairly close, but for me misses the mark somewhat in achieving what I had hoped. But that's what trying is all about, isn't it? Perhaps next time.

Good to meet you. Hope you enjoy.

Don

Also, The temerature of the charcoal in the glass is too way too cool. at least on the monitor. Doesn't look that way here though.

Gilberte
11-16-2004, 03:40 AM
Great ! The glass in the foreground adds a lot relating to the composition.
Congrats !

don lee
11-16-2004, 03:48 PM
Don, a very interesting girl. The face has it, and for me anything else musn't detract from that. So I'd want minimal.

MikeyMikey,

Sorry. I guess I carried it a bit further that "minimal!"

Have to agree with you though, in looking at the piece as it is now, and the scans of the first one, I kind of miss her.

However, this does come a little closer to what I had orginally seen. I pulled that out from the recesses of my mind to carry it out to this.

I've attached the piece as it looks now (it's good old 'No. 6', and jotted the compositional line of eye movement I hoped it would evoke. I think it does more or less.

Well, I've got to get out of here for awhile and go look at the newly flaming Arkansas foliage. The sedation from this morning has worn off, and I've just got to get out there.

Don

Mikey
11-16-2004, 03:53 PM
Don, the black ssside of the table bugs me. You could try losing it a bit with shadow, although I don't know. What's behind her hand bugs me as well. Could it be softened, out of focus, that might be great.

Mikey

don lee
11-16-2004, 06:29 PM
Don, the black ssside of the table bugs me. You could try losing it a bit with shadow, although I don't know. What's behind her hand bugs me as well. Could it be softened, out of focus, that might be great.

Mikey

Mikey,

Do you mean the black edge of the table? For one heart stopping moment, I thought the muted detail of her legs had been lost in the upload and that whole wad of tone down there was black!

I think you're probably right. The edge is a bit harsh and dividing. I'll modify that and get back to you. I'll try to make the napkin holder a little less intrusive as well, and see what that does.

Thanks for the suggestions!

Don

Mikey
11-16-2004, 06:48 PM
Mikey,

Do you mean the black edge of the table? For one heart stopping moment, I thought the muted detail of her legs had been lost in the upload and that whole wad of tone down there was black!

I think you're probably right. The edge is a bit harsh and dividing. I'll modify that and get back to you. I'll try to make the napkin holder a little less intrusive as well, and see what that does.

Thanks for the suggestions!

Don

That's what I meant Don. Either lighten it (the edge), or darken what's underneath the table. You will know either way will change the picture, so it's your choice.

Mikey

Tamana
11-16-2004, 07:56 PM
She's thinking about a "him".

I personally think it crossed the line - the other was perfect -- reminded me of Linda Hamilton's photo when she was sitting in the jeep in that movie "The Terminator". The look is so distantly from within her it's beyond.

You don't see many who can capture that as this...

Matt Sammekull
11-16-2004, 08:16 PM
Hi.

Don, - I really like this. I just came across this thread and read it from the beginning, thus watching your progress.

To me, the foreground and it's glass do nothing for the image as a whole. Ask yourself; does it need to be there in order for you to make your point?

It really is a great drawing, - charcoal at top level.

I personally hope you do nothing more to this...

My choice would be to crop like this:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Nov-2004/15549-mythought.jpg

All the best,

//matteus

don lee
11-16-2004, 09:53 PM
She's thinking about a "him".

I personally think it crossed the line - the other was perfect -- reminded me of Linda Hamilton's photo when she was sitting in the jeep in that movie "The Terminator". The look is so distantly from within her it's beyond.

You don't see many who can capture that as this...

Oops! Which "other" are you referring to Tamana, the first one?

As I indicated to Mikey, I kinda tend to agree. But she's gone forever now.

I really am proud you enjoyed it, (even if the orginal enjoyed only a fleeting existence. Perhaps that is appropriate to the expression).

Maybe everyone but Mikey should look away when I post the updates. (It ain't his fault). But to tell the truth, his suggestions did wonders.

I think it was a "him". If I recall, a rather handsome gentleman showed up not long after I did the initial sketchbook version of her (I am grateful for his timing, he might not have reacted well to my sketching his lady). Her expression changed--it lit up.

Thanks,

Don

don lee
11-16-2004, 10:04 PM
Hi.

Don, - I really like this. I just came across this thread and read it from the beginning, thus watching your progress.

To me, the foreground and it's glass do nothing for the image as a whole. Ask yourself; does it need to be there in order for you to make your point?

It really is a great drawing, - charcoal at top level.

I personally hope you do nothing more to this...

My choice would be to crop like this:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Nov-2004/15549-mythought.jpg

All the best,

//matteus

Matt,

You could very well have preserved her, except of course for some of the extra detail in the lower portions of the crop you chose. I do not think it's a bad idea at all. A boxknife can do wonders, along with my wife's matting.

Thanks,

Don

On second thought, I think not. It is what it is now, and I do like the line that draws the eye to the bottom. Try as I might, I cannot get my eye to wander off it, and then after making the trip I have laid out for them,they go back to peruse the details, exactly what should happen.

So, I guess she gets to keep her fanny.

takeshi iwasawa
11-17-2004, 04:24 AM
Hi Don, I really love the very first drawing without all the details in foreground. I don't think its un-ethical for artist to sketch a person without their knowledge or approval. Thanks for the inspiration! Watching this made me wanna go out and do some sketch. :clap: :clap:

don lee
11-17-2004, 09:16 AM
Hi Don, I really love the very first drawing without all the details in foreground. I don't think its un-ethical for artist to sketch a person without their knowledge or approval. Thanks for the inspiration! Watching this made me wanna go out and do some sketch. :clap: :clap:

Now that is like being awarded a medal, Takeshi! The ultimate highest praise you could have bestowed; to want to go do some sketching because of seeing this. Please do, and share the results (and don't forget to credit me with inspiring your masterpieces :p :wink2: !

Seriously, I am looking forward to seeing them.

Don

don lee
11-17-2004, 07:05 PM
That's what I meant Don. Either lighten it (the edge), or darken what's underneath the table. You will know either way will change the picture, so it's your choice.

Mikey

Well Mikey,

Here is number 7. A ghost of the napkin holder remains, but you can only do so much lifting and covering with a kneaded easer and white pastel! The table edge has lost it's divisive intrusion, and I also darkened her skirt as it progressed down toward the knees. Works much better, to me it makes the newly enhanced but still subdued hint of calf--how shall I put this--provocative.

I rather like it a great deal. The line is much more elegant.

Thanks.

Don

Mikey
11-17-2004, 07:11 PM
Don, this is much better, I think. I'm now looking at her face and all the rest is just there to give the scene some substance.

Mikey

don lee
11-17-2004, 07:59 PM
Don, this is much better, I think. I'm now looking at her face and all the rest is just there to give the scene some substance.

Mikey

Mikey, I must say that I deeply appreciate all of ya'lls help (I am a Southerner!) . It is amazing how insight grows when one uses more than just one's own sometimes meager supply.

I have a terrible confession to make. The sketch that this work is based on was not done at the River Market in Little Rock, but a few years ago in the sidewalk dining area of the Legacy Hotel in Little Rock.

Sarah set me straight. I was covering the Whitewater trials of the Arkansas defendants here at the Federal Courtroom for FOX (I KNOW, I KNOW!!!) as their courtroom sketch artist, and we used to sit over at the Legacy while waiting on court to begin. I was killing time when the aforementioned events did in fact transpire, but not on the River Market. I had that sketch confused with one I did indeed do of a young lady at the River Market earlier this year (do you see a pattern here? Sarah sure has.).

I've got to label my sketches better!

The day in question was May 28, 1996.

Nevertheless, that is the extent of my malfeasance. That and the fact that on the last day of the trial, when our ex-governor (Jim Guy Tucker) and his two henchmen were all set hear the verdict, Jeraldo Rivera took a seat directly in front of me in the Press Section, and after looking at the sketch I was working on, said to me "You know, you don't look like an artist!" My reply was a very cold stare. I should have said what immediately popped into my head, "Yeah, and you look like a nice guy, but there you go!"

We're not exchanging Christmas cards.

Don

earthbot1
11-17-2004, 08:33 PM
Good thread to follow, it looks great in all stages. Wonderful drawings/subject

don lee
11-17-2004, 09:06 PM
Good thread to follow, it looks great in all stages. Wonderful drawings/subject

Appreciate your thoughts and interests, but it's about to get more interesting.


What an epiphany!!! I just realized that I have transposed not only the time, but the feeling I had about the incident(s)!

The girl in the sketch I did at the River Market this year did indeed have that wistful, ethereal something about her expression that just drove me nuts. She was lovely.

This young lady was, if I'm not mistaken (and I've certainly proved I can be, right?) was a CBS reporter! She was quite lovely, but I think I can read her expression now--"Why in h**l am I stuck down here in Hickville USA covering this?"

Maybe I was sketching her out of the same sense of ennui!

Thanks, and I guess I'll close this one out.

Don

don lee
11-20-2004, 09:33 AM
Appreciate your thoughts and interests, but it's about to get more interesting.


What an epiphany!!! I just realized that I have transposed not only the time, but the feeling I had about the incident(s)!

The girl in the sketch I did at the River Market this year did indeed have that wistful, ethereal something about her expression that just drove me nuts. She was lovely.

This young lady was, if I'm not mistaken (and I've certainly proved I can be, right?) was a CBS reporter! She was quite lovely, but I think I can read her expression now--"Why in h**l am I stuck down here in Hickville USA covering this?"

Maybe I was sketching her out of the same sense of ennui!

Thanks, and I guess I'll close this one out.

Don

I found it! The original face that launched literally tens of responses!

This is the Rivermarket sketch I had done earlier this year and the work I thought I was basing the recent charcoal on. The young lady here is a little more wistful, I think, a little more pensive. Hard to read either expression.

Well, that does it!

Don

Mikey
11-20-2004, 05:33 PM
Delightful

Mikey