Bad Eble the third

Eble attempt #3 in this series, see attempts #1 and #2.

It’s a tired refrain among amateurs in all disciplines to say that their every effort sucks, so I won’t. But please know that I want to, especially about this one ;D

Like yesterdays Eble, I didn’t use any reference material today. I’m inclined to think that was a mistake as the results strike me as bearing no resemblance to their supposed inspiration. But I will say that venturing further over the precipice in this way was interesting, what was intended as one drawing became two because I couldn’t reconcile the two parts.

Unlike my previous two drawings I first drew these in pencil and then went over them in pen. Having the freedom to use an eraser with the pencil proved an unwelcome burden, I found it hard to commit to any line and this mild paralysis probably contributed to me splitting the drawing into two. In going over them I used STAEDTLER Pigment Liners, a 0.5 and a 0.8. I found them hard to use, too thick and too clumsy in my imprecise hand.

I discarded a third portion (unpictured) of the drawing on account of the stylistic drift that occurred during the production of the surviving two.

Looking at them now, isolated from the experience of the attempt, and from each other, I find that I like them a little more. The first, and the more Eble-like of the two, leans on triangles more than attempt #1 and #2, and something in it seems to create movement. I think the swoop looks too much like a sail or a fin though.

The second evokes a sort of modern Cathedral, but doesn’t inspire me at all.

I find they both look a little like cartoons though, not what I was going for. In fact, the whole experience has made me like yesterdays attempt better. Hopefully tomorrow I can create something tighter, better balanced, and truer to the form I am trying to mimic.

Keen to divert myself from the Eble project for a moment I turned my pencil to Cubism and made a crude attempt to copy a figure from Albert Gleizes’ Les Baigneuses, 1912. This I enjoyed more than the Eble effort above. Trying to copy a very colorful oil painting – even badly, with just a pencil – helped me to better appreciate the many mediums of art. I was using a 2H pencil which proved much too hard. Though I did persist I would have been better off switching to a softer graphite, shading was difficult and the hardness was unforgiving even for the outlines. I spent about ten minutes on the figure and left it at that.

My fairly feeble attempt at a totem of Cubism.
My fairly feeble attempt at a totem of Cubism.

Another barrier I discovered mid-attempt was realising that I had no understanding of the original painting. It’s only now that I realise the figure I was attempting to recreate was not at all in the position that I thought they were. Initially the figure appeared to me to be facing to front, standing, then part way through the drawing I fooled myself into seeing them standing but facing away and looking back over the shoulder, and now that I’m looking at it again some hours later I believe they are seated, as though on a chair or step, facing towards us, and that the plump orb in their middle, rather than being an arse as I imagined, is probably a thigh, ballooned by having their leg bent under them – in which case my drawing makes no sense at all!

Tomorrow I’ll probably think them to be doing a headstand with an apple on their ear. A reminder to look closely before hand.

Les Baigneuses (The Bathers) by Albert Gleizes in 1912
Les Baigneuses (The Bathers) by Albert Gleizes in 1912