Charcoal & Bichrome Wash Sketches Bristol 1992-4

At this time I drew weekly at a Monday evening life session in John Hayward’s studio at the Jamaica St Studios in Bristol. These were all quick, usually gestural, poses, longest at 10 minutes and shortest 3 minutes, using a single strong spotlight. The compressed charcoal sticks I had been using were too messy to be able to use in someone else’s studio, so I started drawing in square stick willow charcoal and then applying a two colour warm/cool wash to simply and quickly distinguish the figure from the ground, and the areas in the light from the areas in the shade. I usually carried only two or three tubes of watercolour paint and a white plate plus a can for water and three large one inch synthetic watercolour brushes to the session. The studio was crowded, and I used a flimsy aluminium sketching easel that had a shelf for my paints so I could not move about to find the best composition. I painted on cheap 22” wide roll paper usually cut to 30” or 42” long. Later, I used the same scheme to draw in my studio in Montpelier.