blind contour drawing of Otis from Twin Peaks, season 3

finishing Love Machine Shorts #2 with 4th grade art materials

I’m starting over another problematic composition from Love Machine Shorts #2 for the third time. But on paper, because my tablet stopped working. Or the cable. Whatever … I can’t get the power to stay on. (Weirdly, something similar happened while I was drawing Shorts #1 a few months ago.)

It’s not in my budget to replace my tablet right now. So this time, I’m going to finish it old school. And since I gave all my paint (except white) and brushes to my sister, I’m down to paper of various types, white acrylic paint, Crayola markers, and colored pencils. So it’s really more like elementary school.

page from map book thinly coated in white paint, with scribbles made with colored pencils
colored pencils and brown marker wash over acrylic

A thin layer of thinned white acrylic paint on the paper blocks absorption and keeps the ink on the surface where you can rewet it and move it around. But not completely remove it, so I have to keep reminding myself to leave white areas.

The paint layer takes colored pencil lines well enough to use for scribbles. This is probably the first time I’ve ever tried to figure out analog ways of achieving things I can do in digital drawing. These last few drawings in the series will obviously look different.

But thanks to my high school algebra teacher, I know an equation to calculate the ratio of proportions. It’s a really simple one I’ve used countless times.

detail of robot drawing in marker on acrylic-coated paper
detail of colored pencil and marker sketch

In this case, I had the print size of the digital ones in inches, but needed to scale it down to 13″ so I could leave myself margins on either side of the paper I’m using. It’s from an oversized map book of Tidewater Virginia I have for some reason.

It’s big enough to give myself enough room to compose images, and small enough to tape to my drawing board.

I keep wanting to hit ctrl + s and ctrl + z, though. The fingers I use for keyboard shortcuts twitch when I make a mistake or a series of strokes I like. It’s good to work with unforgiving media sometimes. I can’t erase or use layers, so I have to slow down and pay more attention to where objects overlap.

This is pretty uncomfortable. I can feel the the tension in my shoulders when I touch a marker tip to the surface. I’ve gone soft and must now go back to school. I need to be retaught by stricter materials with working properties that my body has to learn over again.

To warm up, I’m making blind contour drawings of characters, objects, and places from Twin Peaks.

blind contour drawing of glass box from Twin Peaks, season 3
the glass box
blind contour drawing of the Great Northern Hotel in Twin Peaks
the Great Northern Hotel
blind contour drawing of security guard in Twin Peaks, season 3
security guard
blind contour of Dougie Jones from Twin Peaks, season 3
Dougie Jones
blind contour drawing of Lucy and Andy from Twin Peaks, season 3
Lucy and Andy
blind contour drawing of Otis from Twin Peaks, season 3

These are always fun to look at when they’re done. Should do them more often.

Also, I’m editing Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, and it’s kind of a bear. More on that later.

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