With the pencils approved, the next step is painting my little scale value studies (double-clicking on the image will increase its size).
Let go back several steps here first. Above is the very first thumbnail sketch I did for the Pleistocene mural. It was drawn in my sketchbook well before I began the pencil drawings I showed you in the past few Journal entries. You’ll notice that the proportions are different from the pencil drawings. The size of each mural was originally going to be 4′ x 8′. As I was beginning the pencil drawings, the size of each mural was changed to 3′ x 8′.
As you can see, crude as it is, I was already beginning to think about my value (dark and light) systems.
I looked at it in the mirror and decided I liked it better in reverse, so I flopped it:
Using this thumbnail and my approved pencil drawing (see previous Journal entry), I painted this value study:
I went through the same process for the mural depicting San Diego’s contemporary life. Here’s my thumbnail:
I wondered how it compared to its reverse image version.
If you compare these to the first pencil drawings I submitted to the zoo, you’ll see that I decided to use elements of both.
Again, using these crude thumbnails and my approved pencil drawing as a rough guide, I painted my value study:
The value studies are very important, as they establish and organize all of the design elements into groups. They simplify and do away with much of the chaos of the pencil drawings. Leaving out the color at this stage is good because color can be such a distraction. I have learned that if your values are working (and you stick to them), it doesn’t matter what colors get put down later; the picture will work.
I sent the zoo jpegs of these two value studies so that they could see the progress I was making.
Next: Color Studies