The background is sorted

No matter what media I’ve been working in I’ve been pondering the background of the images because they’ve never felt quite finished. Not doing something visually appealing with the background feels like the artistic equivalent of going out with only one shoe on.

I’ve continued with my marker pen and pastel experiment over the last few months and have finally cracked the missing background ingredient which turns out to be coloured pencil.

This bowl of noodles is the image that I worked it out on.

Mixed media bowl of noodle soup - marker, pastel and coloured pencil.
Mixed media bowl of noodle soup – marker, pastel and coloured pencil.

The final result isn’t that great if I look at the details. The bowl of soup is too full – good luck trying to carry that to the table 🙂 Some of the noodles appear to go through the carrots which is a mistake. I’m not too worried about these issues as my main focus was experimenting with the mixed media and also the paper itself. This image was done on letraset marker pad. It doesn’t work very well with the coloured pencil which doesn’t sit or blend very well on the coated surface.

I also realised that the Derwent watercolour pencils I was using leave a surface that repels the pastel pencil. In later drawings I’ve switched to the Faber Castell polychromos pencils which mix with the pastel better but not perfectly.

Ignoring the niggling details I’m actually happy with the overall effect of the image and I finally feel like the background is properly a part of the whole effect.


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