While working on other projects and having a bit of a holiday in Bilbao ( very nice) I continue to cycle up through the fragment of ancient woodland that is Savages Spinney. Heavy leafy branches now arch over the path which is patterned with the slanting rays of sunshine and dappled shadows.
I hope to be working on some bigger prints next week and so yesterday I decided to do some more sketches from my favourite spot for some reference material to work from.
There is a particular tree on the path which often catches the light. This little sketch to record the basic shapes and the lights and darks.
My sketch by a fallen tree in my favourite spot.
Then more, to simplify things and look for shapes and ideas, making a rough record of what I am seeing now, in summer. It is so much busier and complicated, so different from the stark tree shapes of the winter I had sketched before in November.
This one above just line and a few details then the following sketches with more tone, to record the dappled light, the path, butterflies, branches knitted together with lichen, seed pods, spotted leaves, bees and leaf canopies, puddles and the water of the reservoir etc etc. I made written notes about sounds and wildlife as well as notes of shapes that I might add.
There is nothing like working on site. You can eliminate so much of the muddle and focus just on what you want.
A4 Sketchbook pages, pen and brush and inks.
The more abstract the sketches become the more possibilities present themselves and the more they represent to me the essence of what I see in the wood. I hope to get some small paintings done later this week to explore some of these in colour.
It will be very interesting to see how these carry forward into prints!