My drawing animations on Vimeo. ART a short film. Face One and Two more short films.

This my first experiment with my camera at a very quick animation drawing the word ART.

Two more very short animations, drawing a face and hair.


Drawing One, Part Two, Intimacy, Project 4, At Home, Exercise 2 Composition -an interior. Exercise 3 Material Differences. Reflection.

Exercise 2 -Composition- an interior.

I have drawn two A 3 size pictures in dark tonal values and left out details and textures.

The one below is a portrait composition and cropped. it shows the upstairs landing which has varying light quality that bounces around the doors and chairs.

Top landing in pastel tones

The next one is a view of the stairs looking down into the hall space in landscape composition. There, the light comes from the side rooms and the hall is mostly in shadow, as are the stairs. I drew this with pastel making tonal values by smudging the surface.

Looking downstairs in pastel tones

Four tonal sketches in ink and cropped to make the drawings interesting. Cropping gives the views a sense of drama and mystery. I love the tonal values I created with inky washes. I am deciding which view to draw for the next exercise.

Exercise 3- Material Differences

I decided to draw with 6 B pencil and graphite stick on white cartridge paper A 2 size. My view is looking down the stairs into the hall way. I chose this as I really wanted to express the light and dark areas that were bouncing around the floor and doors.

Looking down stairs drawn with pencil and graphite.


Firstly I really enjoyed both of these exercises and that’s because it was a change from drawing still life subjects. Secondly, I tried drawing with pastels in monotones which suited the dark and light areas of the hall way views, and I enjoy the way pastels blend and crumble onto the pastel paper surface, making it easy to move around to make soft marks.

Making lots of sketches and inky drawings helped to develop the drawing in Exercise 3 too. Trying different views, cropping and changing the composition plane made me think and look in a different way at the subject.  To develop my drawing, I still need to look at my mark making process, as I felt the wall on the right needed different marks, mine looks very organic and lively. I thought the shading on the floor worked well, and I used a soft rubber to lift out all the light areas. The perspective needs a bit of tightening up, but I think that will come with practise. The door into the toilet is a bit big, but the light is good.

It looks very much like my hall way, which is quite spacious. I thought I captured the light, which was one of my aims. I wanted to created a moody drawing with less detail but lots of shading with a different view point.




Drawing One, Part Two, Intimacy, Project 4, At Home, Artist Research, Unusual Domestic Interiors.

Rachel Whiteread CBE, born 1963. Winner of the Turner Prize 1993. Whiteread is a British sculptor, in which she makes casts of domestic items, such as hot water bottles, beds, light switches, tables and chairs, plus buildings and and entire rooms. Her most famous work is called ‘House’, 1993. It was a concrete cast of the interior of a Victorian house in East London. Unfortunately it caused a lot of controversy and was pulled down by the council. Luckily she was the first woman to win the Turner Prize.

Earlier this year I saw one of her works at Houghton Hall, Norfolk, a small concrete cast of a hut, called ‘Houghton Hut’, 2016.

Houghton_Hut 29/8/2018

Houghton Hut close up

(Photo by Ann Marie Varnam. Hougton Hall July 2018)

Houghton Hut close up

(Photo by Ann Marie Varnam. Hougton Hall July 2018)

Houghton Hut close up

(Photo by Ann Marie Varnam. Hougton Hall July 2018)

Houghton Hut close up

(Photo by Ann Marie Varnam. Hougton Hall July 2018)

It is very beautiful with it’s steely grey colours and many detailed textures, you can see where the door handles were, bolts, hinges, nail and screw marks too. It’s an amazing view of the interior on the outside, I think Whiteread tries to challenge the views perception of all her casts. And that worked for such a simple garden icon.

Henri Matisse, (born 1869 died 1954).  I am going to include Henri Matisse in my artist research, as he is one of my favourite artists. Matisse was a master print maker, painter and sculptor. He is famous for his colour, pattern, texture and he flattened forms which gave him a distinctive style. He painted decorative interior scenes, many with views through windows, still life set ups and figures. One of my favourite paintings is ‘Still life on a Blue Table’ 1947. I like this as Matisse has made an outrageous red room with a flattened out table and a window opened on to a decorative garden. The wall paper has been reduced to a simple zigzag pattern. Matisse has influenced design with his fluid and bold style, becoming a leader in modern art practice.

Still Life on a Blue table, Matisse 1947 29/8/2018.


Drawing One, Part Two, Intimacy, Project 4, At Home, Exercise 1, Quick sketches around the home.

Here is a selection of drawings from my sketch book of ‘around the home’. I really enjoyed this exercise as it’s made a change from focusing totally on still life subjects.

I was very lucky to inherit this old house, and I live with lots of clutter and furniture. It has lots of dark shadowy places downstairs, but is lighter upstairs. So it lends itself to be drawn and painted. Each of my sketches only took a few seconds to draw and my inky sketches only minutes to sketch out too. I didn’t want to draw the whole view of an area, so I decided to cut or crop some drawings, I think it made it look more interesting as a composition.

Living room in pencil
Living room in pencil
Doorways in pencil.
Hall views in pencil.
Hall doorways in pen.
Hall objects and doorway in pen.
Kitchen window and sink in pencil.
Hall door in pen.
Kitchen in pencil
Work shop in garden in pencil.
Kitchen fridge freezer in pencil.
Old conservatory in pencil.
Kitchen in pen.
Shed views in pencil.
Cabinet in pen.
Harold’s old chair in pen.

I also drew my favourite ‘around the house views’ in ink with a reed pen. I was given some Winsor & Newton inks as a present and so I wanted to experiment with them. The drawings are created on a beige all round mixed media paper, which I like because of it’s colour and smooth surface.

Harold’s old chair and kitchen view
Kitchen sink and kitchen view
Fridge and front door view
Garden workshop
Hall doorways

My favourites of all these sketches are Harold’s old chair, the workshop and the sheds. I also like the kitchen sink view too. I really enjoyed being outside to draw the sheds and garden, so I may study this in more detail. I can’t decide which ones are the strongest as I like them all, but I would favour the kitchen views with the garden ones as possibly my strongest ones. My favourite medium is black Sharpie pen as it flows quickly over the paper surface, and I love drawing with ink and a reed pen, as I can water it down to make a variety of tones. I felt the inks expressed the shadows and overall mood of the house.

I didn’t get around to drawing upstairs, which I will do next.

Drawings of upstairs

Light fittings, door knobs and the like drawn in ink and wash.

Ink drawings of upstairs rooms

Inky drawing looking down the stairs into the bottom hall way


Drawings from my sketch book of upstairs views, drawn with black felt pen. Many of my drawings are cropped to get an intimate view of a room.

Drawing One. Part 2 Intimacy. Rework of Exercise 3 Mixed Media Still Life, Shells.

This is another rework of Exercise 3, mixed media Still Life. This time I wanted to explore just the one shell and decided enlarge the drawing.


So I gathered up my materials, I chose to work on a square shaped cardboard support, I added pieces of scrap papers, newspaper and some tissue. I liked the spotty paper as it gave the background some texture. Using acrylic paints, inks, white pen, charcoal, graphite sticks and pencils. I drew out the shell shape so it filled the square shape.


I really enjoyed this exercise, as it involved tearing and cutting papers, making marks using inks and a Rigger brush for the lines. Working larger has it’s challenges, such as making marks bigger and effective enough so they look like the textures on the shell, but keeping it expressive too. Underneath the painting is a lot of scribbling and dripping of inks, which can be seen at the bottom of the picture.

I don’t think it’s a perfect painting, but in terms of a change in composition and size is good. It made me think about scale and volume too. Plus I left some of the spotty paper showing through the background, which I hope has added interest to the work.

As a result I painted two more smaller shells, this time on canvas.


The grounds were created the same way as my square shell painting. But I used newspaper to ‘outline’ the shells, a way to get their shape rather that drawing them in charcoal. I also painted mostly with acrylic paint, but to get the textures and lines on the shell surface, I scraped the paint with the end of a brush. So I was drawing the lines which are naturally on the shell.  I wanted to express light and dark too. So, for the first shell painting I chose purple and yellow, which are complementary colours, using purple allowed the shadows to be expressed in a softer way. The second shell painting was mostly black, so I kept the background quite light. The shell seems to resonate on the canvas. Again I ‘drew’ the textures lines with the end of a paint brush. For both pictures I kept the spotty paper showing through.

I have also added a mixed media painting of a Hag Stone. Using papers, acrylic paint and acrylic pens made on a small canvas.

Hag Stone from Cromer beach, mixed media on canvas.



Drawing One. Nonstop-50 Drawings in Four Hours Challenge from the book, ‘Experimental Drawing’ by Robert Kaupelis, Chapter Six, page 119.

Recommended reading for Drawing One course; ‘Experimental Drawing’ by Robert Kaupelis, 1980. Watson-Guptill, Publication/New York.

After reading this book ‘Experimental Drawing’ by Robert Kaupelis. I decided to try the exercise in chapter six, Probing a Single Form-Idea on page 119. Which is, Nonstop- 50 Drawings in Four Hours.

I did my challenge on 17th August 2018 between one and three thirty pm. I drew on white squared shaped paper with a variety of drawing tools, pens, pencil, graphite, watercolour pencils and watercolour paint.I drew my collection of sea shells.

My reason for trying this exercise was to really explore and probe the sea shell form, shapes and textures. Stretch myself to draw in a concentrated way, to loosen up, to explore lines and marks, and just because I like a challenge !!

Here are my results. First I drew in my square sketch book using my shell collection and drawing tools. Making many decisions as what to draw with had to be done quickly, fours hours seem a long time but it went quickly.

My first ten drawings were swiftly drawn and I sketched with a smooth flowing felt pen. Many of my drawings are created in an open line, with the idea of warming up and capturing the ‘gist’ or ‘feel’ of the shell shape. I supposed I used a blind contour drawing technique, where I just looked at the shell and not the paper. Hence I have gaps in the lines and as I progressed I started to look at the shell searching for detail and texture. I also changed the shell for different shapes.

1 to 10  drawings
The first set of ten drawings in felt pen.

The next ten shell studies were evolving into something different, as I started to add tone, texture and details. My need to paint in watercolour took over, the open line was no longer satisfactory, as I knew I wanted to make deeper dark areas to express the shape of the shell.  I also drew with a pen that made thinner lines.

11 to 20 drawings
The second set of drawings.

From numbers 21 to 30 my shell drawings became my friends, as I added more and more details. This time I drew with a fine pen, pencil, wax and paint and picked shells with more marks, lines and textures than before.

21 to 30 drawings
Next 21 to 30 drawings in pencil, pen and paint.


31 to 40 drawings were mainly painted in watercolour washes with wax to add highlights. I included pencil and watercolour pencils too. Now I was painting or scribbling in a background. drawing with a brush too and adding lots of details I saw on the shell surface, such as barnacles, broken spaces, shiny insides, colours such as pinks and blues. I enjoyed this the most because I could paint and combine drawing line, which I love.

31 to 40 drawings
31 to 40 shell drawings in ink, paint and pencil.

With my final ten drawings I took a different approach and drew using my left hand ( I am right handed). I started with a pencil, but changed to a black felt pen, as it moves freely over the paper  and felt easier in my hand. My shells took on a darker and heavier feel as I emphasised the lines and shaded in the background parts. Also they slant like they are sliding off the paper.

41 to 50 drawings
The last ten drawings in pencil and pen. Drawn with my left hand.


Well I really enjoyed all of this exercise. And that’s because I chose to draw my beautiful shell collection, plus I love to draw quickly and grabbing just the essence of the subject really thrills me. I know, I have drawn my shells before, but expressing their lines and marks is still exciting.

As for my drawing, I changed my medium to suit the shell in an intuitive way, which I often do in my drawing. I don’t think there is anything I would change, as this was a nonstop drawing challenge it made me think quickly and work within the time boundary.  Working in this way, I thought the shells may have become more abstract, but I seem to have kept them realistic but deployed in a loose style.

I now have fifty pieces of paper with lovely drawings, so I may display them in a square shaped book. Or get some reproduced for cards.

I took some close up photos of my drawings, so here’s a selection. They look like I have laid them out in a museum style box to be viewed. Perhaps that’s how I wanted to show them as objects and drawings with out thinking about it.


Drawing One, Still Life, Sunday Mini Challenge.

Today I took part in a Sunday Mini Challenge posted on the forum by another student. Which is featured in the  Weekender E- Bulletin under Hot Topic, dated 16th Aug 2018.

This is what I did.


In the light, that I have been drawing and studying Still life for the last few weeks, I thought a ‘play’ on the words Still Life was a great idea. So I drew the word STILL LIFE on a textured paper, rubbed it out, drew it again and again, till I got the above drawing. It took about half an hour to do.

I really liked the ghosting left by my previous drawing marks and the words are not still but moving towards the front. My daughter thought it looked liked a ‘still’ title for a film. I never thought of it like that.