Thank you, John, Joan, Debby, Rainy, for your generous comments. I'm flattered.
This one is based on Gustave Courbet's self portrait but I changed his looks to some non-descript fisherman.
I have had a terrrible time using white on black paper recently and today, I am going to prove to myself it's easier to tone the paper dark by myself.
Of all my sketchbooks, I chose Stillman Epsilon 7x9 inch 100 lbs smooth surface because I know it will erase effortlessly from my colored pencils experience. Any rougher, it will leave a lot of pigment residue.
I could easily used pan pastel to color the surface but I am too lazy to take it out, get the sponge and apply one stroke to three dabs of pigment. How many sponge strokes do I need to cover a 7x9 inch paper? Too much!!
And I'm too cheap to use soft pastels. Hard pastels will leave markings.
So I used my Cretacolor Chunky Charcoal which has been calling me for a week already.
First layer - Olive Green - smudge it with old paper towel
Second layer - Charcoal - smudge some more
One minute exercise at most.
Then with Tough Stuff pen eraser and Factis Artist rubber eraser (Jerry's)which I like more and more and rely on it for complete erasures on colored pencil work, I started lifting. I then realized I need a darker color for details.
Lyra Polycolor pencil didn't have a darker green, Caran-D'Ache's olive green is not dark enough and raw umber was close but I didn't want the brown tone. There was a good Green Gray in Derwent Graphitint but it's too shiny and wouldn't stay on powder. So I found a French Gray 70B from Derwent pastel pencils and it's perfect. This one is going on the wall. It's the first time I did a subtractive piece so successfully.
The more I practice on subtractive pieces, the closer I am to picking up scratchboard art which is totally foreign to me.