Exercise 4 Shadows and reflected light

For this composition, use two objects with reflective surfaces, such as a stainless steel coffee pot and ceramic sugar bowl. The different reflective surfaces will provide an interesting interplay of light and shadow.

Use charcoal, a putty rubber and decide on the size of the composition. Use A1 or A2 paper with a tooth so that you can do bold strokes using the side of your charcoal or conté stick.

Try to fill the paper with your objects. Show the reflected light and shade of one object falling on another and leave as little background space (‘negative’ space) as you can. Look carefully at the shapes, shadows and light before you start drawing. You might find the annotated example below helpful.

Draw the basic pattern of shadow first with sweeps of charcoal and/or hatching marks and spots. The white paper will represent your lightest tonal value, so start with the mid tones and then build to the darkest tonal value, as in previous exercises. Observe the reflected pattern of light and shade and work it into the surface of the object. Lift out the smallest lightest tones with the point of a putty rubber, and use the sharpest edge of the charcoal or conté stick to add the smaller finer marks.

IMG_0209 This is charcoal on A2 cartridge paper of a metal coffee pot and a metal wine cooler.  I think I got 80% of the reflections and shades right.  Still missing the fine details.  Though I am happy with the overall gradual tone shift.  Perhaps I need paper with more tooth.


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