My Flirt With Crosshatching

I mentioned before, that I was working on a project for Lua Nova, but as per usual  I never posted the results like I had planned. The thing is when it comes to drawing, I have this thing, where I really (really) dislike my work while I’m working on it and for a few months afterwards I feel the same. It usually helps to put it away for say six months. Then when I stumble upon it later, I might have changed my mind about it. I’m not sure if I just get fed up with looking at it while working on it, or if it’s because I’m painfully aware of all the mistakes and that’s all I can see until I look at it with “fresh eyes”.

Anyhow, here are my illustrations. My brief was to make four illustrations:

One showing a mother breastfeeding, one despicting a mother and a happy older baby playing, one drawing of a mother about to hit a child with a big red cross over it and one of a mother disciplining her child in a better manner.

To begin with the illustrations were meant to be black and white ink drawings, then later I was asked if it were ok to render them as it might stand out more on the posters. I ended up doing them in black ink and then rendering them in Photoshop using a new layer and choosing layer option multiply. This way you can use the brush tool to paint on the colours and still see the hand drawn lines. If you play with the opacity of the brush, you can acchieve a watercolour look as well. This way I could send both the black and white drawings and the rendered ones. 

The thing about black and white ink drawings, is that you only have two tones to work with and so you have to decide how to create shadows and depth. I chose to use crosshatching. It’s a very old technique and one which others master much better than me. Da Vinci is known for his elaborate drawings using cross hatching (Obviously the rest of us can only dream and aspire!). Look at the gradiation he acchieves in this drawing with crosshatching:

 (source Artpages 101)

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