Thursday, May 16, 2013


In my last post I talked about the BEA Auction of Original Art ( and the two pieces I donated to that event.  In this post I'll show you the steps I went through to create one of those donations, my Sendak piece.
 I started, as I always do, with a graphite pencil sketch.  I almost always make these sketches on a vellum tracing paper, Borden & Riley's "Sheer Trace".  I love the feel of the soft pencil against the slightly toothy surface of this paper.
The transparency of the vellum made it easy for me to use my light box for tracing the gist of the sketch onto the working surface.  For this piece my working surface was Lanaquarelle hot press watercolor paper.  
Here is the nearly-finished the ink line work, executed in crow-quill pen and waterproof black ink.  I haven't yet erased the pencil lines.  You can see that I did a little more pencil sketching before I began the ink work---I toyed with adding shrubbery behind the figures, but decided it would confuse the composition.  And if your eyes are sharp, you will find three "mistakes" in the ink work.
This is the final piece, colored with Winsor & Newton watercolor.  The "mistakes" are no longer apparent.  During school visit presentations, I love making a mistake in my demo drawing, and then showing students some of the tricks that can make the mistake disappear.  And if you couldn't find the mistakes in the piece above---well, that's what I tell students:  often we creators are the only ones who can see the "mistakes".

Be sure to check out the auction! There is some fantastic art up for auction.  And it's all to benefit a very worthwhile cause.


  1. I love seeing how this unfolded, Wendy!

    Please tell use what the "mistakes" are, I could not see any! unless one is the third sign post in the ink-line drawing. What else?

  2. I love seeing these steps, Wendy -- and I only could find 2 "mistakes" :)