Adventures with Ink
This beautiful and versatile medium lends itself to a range of techniques from the meticulous and slowly built up in line or washes to the spontaneous, intuitive and derived by chance. Traditional black shellac based ink will be used to explore many of these techniques from the deeply traditional to the risk-taking experimental; applied to a variety of imagery. In addition there will be demonstrations of various applications and plenty of practical tips.
Multiple small works and experimentation will be created exploring the medium and culminate with a larger major work. We will also be introducing white gouache and other materials with ink.
Please bring your own reference photos/images – I will also bring reference books and photocopies too.
Reference images should include a variety of things. A portrait of someone known or not known to you or famous or even from a reproduction of a painting from the history of art, landscape images, atmospheric/moody is good, textures and figurative this could be of models, sports people, photo journalism anything with people or a figure in it. Animals are also good and still life images can be good reference. Don’t worry too much about bringing all of these just a variety of reference images that interest you – if you don’t bring any I will have some you can choose from.
The major work might not be completed on the day but you will get far enough in mastering technique to continue beyond the workshop.
Ink: A bottle of black India, Indian or China ink. These are all a type of ink which is traditional shellac.
Brands: Sennelier (the best the most expensive) or Winsor and Newton (good quality) are perfect. However any ink that is shellac based is suitable and will be most likely called Indian, India or China. Some retailers interpret these names as where the ink was manufactured that is not correct.
There are lots of types ink and some major brands such as Art Spectrum and Matisse are acrylic binder based. Some inks are water soluble. Although this doesn’t mean they are poor quality they behave differently to shellac based inks. So for the techniques in this workshop are not as effective.
White body colour: 1 tube of white gouache.
Paper: 4 sheets of A3 and one 76 x 50cm of watercolour paper the best are Saunders Waterford and Arches.
However these are also the most expensive Saunders is slightly cheaper than Arches. There are other cheaper options for watercolour paper pads which will be suitable but not as good quite as the above mentioned.
Weight of paper: 300gsm
Texture: Hotpress, also known as smooth best for fine line and washes. Cold Press also known as medium good for washes and bleeding. Some of both is good, but if only getting one type Hotpress will be best choice. If you have bought all one texture but want to try the other I can swap with you as I’ll have both.
Note: paper can be bought from me on the day. A3 $4 a sheet and 75 x 50cm sheets $10 each.
Nibs: Three nibs will do that come to a sharp point.
Calligraphy or drawing nibs are fine with or without a reservoir. The reservoir is a bit of a personal preference thing so good to have both. Select a slightly different size for your nib so all your line thicknesses aren’t all the same but don’t be overly concerned you are mainly just wanting a nib that draws a fine line. You will also need a handle for the nib to fit into. The cheapest black ones are perfectly fine. Make sure the nibs you but fit your handle.
Brushes: Minimum of three brushes that come to a point of various size. For instance, 1, 3 and 6.
Does not have to be specifically those numbers but a variety. Pure sable brushes are the best however there are very good cheap synthetic alternatives in various brands but Roymac is good. It doesn’t matter as much with large brushes but with smaller brushes for detail make sure the point is achieved naturally not scissor snipped to a point.
A few sheets of cartridge paper or a visual diary and pencils/charcoal and an eraser.
For possible preliminary sketches
Absorbent towels and containers.
A good quality absorbent towel and some tissues with no embossing and 4 containers for water and one to store ink. Best is a plastic container with a screw on lid, moisturiser tub or preferably a tall and thin such as an Ostelin VD 30 tablets container.
Sticks, skewers, feathers, toothbrush, spray bottle, corrugated cardboard or anything interesting to apply ink.
Stephen will bring;
PVA glue, various coloured pastels, back up paper and nibs and brushes and some reference books. Paper will be available for purchase.
About the Tutor:
At our September general meeting last year, our guest artist, Stephen Hall demonstrated his ink drawing technique. It was fabulous and we are delighted that he has agreed to be our tutor at our KAS workshop.
Both a sculptor and drawer, Stephen has exhibited with Sculpture on the Sea, the Dobell drawing prize (before it was closed) and Kedumba. The Art gallery of NSW has some of his works in their collection.
“Since 2007 I have been “Proudly Independent” (ie not with a commercial gallery).
Stephen continues to draw prodigiously. He teaches 2 ½ days each week, and on those days he also manages 8 hours of drawing. On the other days, more! (working primarily with ink and a brush or pen, he regards himself as a drawer rather than a painter.)
At the meeting, Stephen demonstrated for us by continuing on a work he is preparing for an upcoming exhibition. The work displayed a group of horses galloping. He had drawn up the horses in fine pencil, and was now completing each horse in ink. The horses were free with bits of armour and saddles falling away.
Using a fine brush, Stephen dipped into the ink, and he also had a container of clean water and a rag to adjust tone with. He used to wait for each layer of ink to dry before doing another, but in the interests of time he has now mastered a technique, his version of “wet in wet” where he can apply differing tones without having to wait for the underneath layer to dry.
“I go to the dark side slowly.”
1. Ku-ring-gai Art Society Members only – log in, then book and pay online by credit card or Paypal
- The workshop fee is $65
2. Non Members only – book and pay online by credit card or Paypal
- The workshop fee is $90.
For any enquiries, feedback or suggestions for future tutors, click here to send Prue Finlay an email or call on 0412 983 034
- Location of all workshops: West Lindfield Community Hall, 40 Moore Avenue, West Lindfield.
- Set up is from 9 o’clock. Workshops start promptly at 9:30am and conclude at 3:30pm.
- COVID-19 Precautions:
- We will sanitise surfaces
- We will provide hand sanitiser,
- Feel free to bring and wear a mask.
- Each workshopper will have their own table to keep 1.5m apart
- Maximum of 11 attendees for workshop
- Demonstrations will be arranged so we are not gathering around in a group
- Please do not attend if you fee unwell, but let Prue know.
- Morning and afternoon tea are provided. Please bring your own mug for tea or coffee, lunch, or this can be bought at the local shops.
- Bookings are essential and workshop must be paid for at time of booking. Participants are booked in order of payment. Class sizes are restricted to a maximum of 11.
- There is no refund or credit for a cancellation. If you are unable to attend please check with Pruei if there is anyone on the waiting list, or arrange for a friend to attend on your behalf.
- Ku-ring-gai Art Society reserves the right to cancel any workshop if the minimum enrollment is not reached, or there are circumstances beyond their control. When such cases occur, a full refund will be made or a coupon will be issued to use for another workshop.
- If you prefer to work on an easel, please bring your own as we only provide tables and chairs.