Ink, Pastel and Water

use firm strokes of the pen
to draw the outline
I was taught by the wise
that feints and multiple strokes
are for the uncommitted and the unsure
so if you mean to draw
draw as if you mean it

it’s important to get the initial draft right
but there is room for limited extra lines
if they add texture or structure
even if they are to be painted out
or subdued by colour into insignificance
at some later stage

the sketch must be capable of standing
quite alone and without colour
complete in it’s own right so that
when you enter the studio to catch
the very first glimpse you should sense
the options being presented

pastel lends the softness of powder
like virgin snow it has depth without resistance
and a capacity for suggestion
with which the hand may judge the pressure
or the sensitivity that is required
through the pressure and direction
exercised by fingertips

wash the work with waving strokes
of water from a fine brush that will
set in final place the colours but beware
this step may bring you undone
the shades you chose may alter under water
and your vision may be gone
wash on however until the finish
and let us see the outcome that emerges
from the application of your craft

don’t forget to sign your name and mark
so none forget that you
were the creator

© Frank Prem, 2000


6 thoughts on “Ink, Pastel and Water

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