Making Marks

As with the pencil, before you start to work with it in earnest you should become familiar with the medium and what potential it has. Charcoal is a very natural medium and therefore it does not lend itself to very tight diagrammatic work - it is too messy for that. It fundamentally lends itself to a more fine art and expressive notion of drawing. So it is a more open and expansive type of material to use.

The type of charcoal marks that are made in this section tend to imply texture and surface and therefore can be used in drawings that have a textural quality to them. From 1 to 9 there are a few examples of mark making. These are just a few ideas to encourage you to experiment with the medium. What I advise is that you make as many potential marks as you can, so that you build up a glossary of mark making that can effectively be used in the future when and where appropriate.

1/ Lay a piece of charcoal about 1" to 2" long flat on the surface of the paper. Then twist it creating a circle. Repeat this process in a pattern and you create a texture.

2/ Lay the same piece of charcoal flat on the paper then move it across the paper in a wave like fashion. Repeat this motion slightly over lapping the first row and you can create a knitted type texture.

3/ Do the same as number two but in a more geometric manner.

4/ Take the same piece of charcoal and drag it to create a dash like mark. Repeat this at regular intervals. If you are drawing a building with many windows this is a very useful solution to that visual problem.

5/ Do the same as four but angle the mark. This textured mark could be used for the implied surface of a woven basket, or the surface of a parquet floor.

6/ Take the charcoal end. Using it on its side make a small arc by pulling the charcoal in that direction. Repeat the process as a reflection of the first arc, and then make a row of these marks. This tends to give the impression of a woven texture usually seen on basketry.

7/ A similar process as number 6 but one makes an angled mark this gives the impression of a rope.

8/ Pulling the charcoal across the surface in an horizontal direction creates very tight lines giving the impression of wood grain.

9/ Similarly drawing parallel wavy lines can produce a different type of wood grain.

Charcoal Drawing Techniquess Planometric
Pencil Drawing Beginners Guide

Pencil Drawing Beginners Guide

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