Monday, March 19, 2012

the art of subtraction


In many of my classes I teach the importance of understanding and using lines in sketching. From bold lines to thin lines, crosshatching to stippling to repetition- using a variety of lines will bring a sketch (or even a doodle) to life! A great way to practice and challenge yourself to work on lines is by using the concept of subtraction. This means that instead of adding pigment to a surface, you are pulling it away. There are all kinds of ways to do this but one of my favorites is using scratchboard. It is affordable, easy to use and a wonderful way to exercise your brain when working on your drawing skills!


All you need to scratchboard and a scratching knife- I purchased mine HERE

And then you scratch,


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and scratch some more!




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Donna Wynn (Yogiknitgirl) said...

Your work is always an inspiration to me! I love all the things you take the time to share with us. Thank you for that, I learn so much. I have never used scratchboard, you made it look so easy. Hope your week is filled with love and light and all good creative things!

mette laumann said...

oohhh i love your stile ;)

Sketch of Senses said...

The feathers are awesome!

Anna said...

very pretty. I just purchased some different colored inks to try drawing with white brown and green inks. I hadnt thought of using scratchboard. That would change things up for this ADD type of artist. The feathers are my favorite.

Unknown said...

love to watch you draw... when i scratch it just relieves an itch! now I learned something new...

Ashlie Ortega said...

This is beautiful. You've inspired me to try this!!!

Thank you,

The Melting Pot said...

Wauw, that's so pretty. I used to make these in elementary school but of course far less beautiful than yours!

Unknown said...

I love your work! Especially the feathers... I need to do this so I'll have something to hang on my empty walls!

becky said...

Love it. I used to teach this technique in junior high. They would make their own boards using thick crayola base painted over with black paint or maybe black crayola...can't quite remember...but great technique.

Cindy Lietz, Polymer Clay Tutor said...

Gorgeous! My daughter Willow is working on a large scratch art project in her Grade 10 art class that is very detailed. It is taking her forever, since it is the kind of thing that is not forgiving of mistakes. I love your free form sketching style that you used on these pieces. Very artistic!

jane said...

I've never heard of scratchboard, although I think I remember doing something similar to what Becky mentioned back in school.

I'll have to look around and see if I can pick some up & try this :)

Lesley Edmonds said...

These are beautiful - oh to draw like that!!! Practice - practice - practice!!!
Thank you for sharing your tips Alisa.

Nat said...

Alisa, what a beautiful place you have here on the web. I am so inspired- I feel artistic just visiting your blog. And this is definitely on my to-do list- so beautiful!

Nat said...

I just tried your link for where you purchased your scratchboard and it didn't work- would love to see where you get yours! Thanks!


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