Friday, April 15, 2011

Playing with Value

In today's Drawing Practice exercise we are going to see how we can get a range of values (light to dark) in a few different materials. Leave color out of it for now, and just see if you can create very light areas, very dark ones, and a range in between.

For now we are just experimenting with different materials; next week (yes, I know I said I would do six Drawing Practice posts, but I'm doing one more) we will use these values to make drawings.

Choose a drawing implement, such as pencil, and start scribbling. Make as many kinds of marks as you can by varying the speed, the pressure, and so forth. Then try to create a range of values from dark to light.

In this one I used pencil, cross-hatching to varying degrees creates the value range.

Same thing in black fine tip felt pen. Here I tried to create different qualities of value by making some areas with more or less straight lines intersecting, and others with loopy scribbles.

I found the black crayon (crayola) the least interesting of my materials. I was surprised, though, that I could actually get a very dark black.

In this final one I used charcoal as well as white pastel. I used a kneaded eraser to smudge and make lines through the charcoal areas. Charcoal and pastel are so dusty, I really don't enjoy working with them. But they do offer such cool possibilities.

Hope you enjoy playing with values this week. We'll see what we can do with them next week. Thanks for visiting!


  1. This was fun! Thanks for sharing and teaching. Didn't have the charcoal,but did do the other three. Can't wait for next week!

  2. I'll catch up soon with your posts (been a bit hectic) - and I've just ordered your new book. Can't wait, but will have to. It will be a summer treat. Ann from UK.


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