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  #21  
Old 14-09-2010, 09:52 PM
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I use my bike gloves - no fingers so I can hold the pencil.

I draw black on white paper. Scan it. Then invert it to get the white on black image.

I find the pencil will smudge ok with just your dry finger. Draw less than you want as the smudge will be bigger.
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  #22  
Old 14-09-2010, 09:57 PM
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I use my bike gloves - no fingers so I can hold the pencil.

I draw black on white paper. Scan it. Then invert it to get the white on black image.

I find the pencil will smudge ok with just your dry finger. Draw less than you want as the smudge will be bigger.
Yep I smudge with my finger aswell, although this tends to smear the graphite beyond my intended area.. However, an eraser is handy for removing unwanted smudges without interfering with the quality of the sketch.
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  #23  
Old 15-09-2010, 08:51 AM
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Following a suggestion on this forum, I have found smudge sticks to be very useful for smudging graphite on white. I find they give good control over the smudging compared to using my finger.
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  #24  
Old 15-09-2010, 04:42 PM
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When i sketch i sketch on white paper using a 2b pencil and then invert it on the computer to make it seem realistic.

I use a template and depending on the object i will use different pressures of the pencil.For nebulous objects i use a smudge stick,i'll recomend one of these, there great.

Probably one of the biggest problems with sketching for me has been lighting and wouldn't mind having one of those book lights Alex mentioned.

Thanks for putting up this thread Alex there have been many replies and many sketches which i love to see.

regards Orestis
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  #25  
Old 15-09-2010, 11:06 PM
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Following a suggestion on this forum, I have found smudge sticks to be very useful for smudging graphite on white. I find they give good control over the smudging compared to using my finger.
Is smudge stick the technical term for these? And where do you get them?
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  #26  
Old 16-09-2010, 09:35 AM
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A smudge stick is like a pencil made of compressed paper, sharpened to a point. They cost me a few shillings at an art supply shop.
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  #27  
Old 16-09-2010, 02:15 PM
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Cotton bud & shavings - cheaper, . Works with graphite & white pencil. Not as fancy or romantic, but it works.
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  #28  
Old 17-09-2010, 08:35 PM
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Hi welcome there Boozehound
How about you submit a sketch for the Sept. Obs challenge? I haven't been able to yet as the weather hasn't been good (will be my first attempt).
I too, wonder how those complicated globs are sketched (must take ages?!)
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  #29  
Old 18-09-2010, 04:20 PM
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M8 & M57 sketch "repros"

Well, having been inspired by Alex's wonderful sketches on black paper, Ive invested in white pastels and black sheets to resketch my graphite on white sketches. Don't think I've quite got the lighting yet to photograph/scan the sketches and the edges on the dark lanes of M8 look too sharp. But it's a start. Any feedback/tips welcomed.
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Click for full-size image (M57 10-9-10.jpg)
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  #30  
Old 18-09-2010, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
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Well, having been inspired by Alex's wonderful sketches on black paper, Ive invested in white pastels and black sheets to resketch my graphite on white sketches. Don't think I've quite got the lighting yet to photograph/scan the sketches and the edges on the dark lanes of M8 look too sharp. But it's a start. Any feedback/tips welcomed.
Well I don't know that I can offer any tips. But it looks like you have made a great start.

To get some additional inspiration there is also a sketch of the day site. http://www.asod.info/

Last edited by michaellxv; 18-09-2010 at 08:53 PM.
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  #31  
Old 19-09-2010, 11:37 PM
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Patrick that really is a great start.

Regarding M-8. Well whenever I have a chance to have a go at this one, I know your attempt would definitely beat mine, so even though I'm learning to sketch myself I'll offer views on yours. I agree, the edges look too sharp and there is too much light play. From what I remember (thru my scope), the light was more concentrated around the star cluster. I like your dark lanes and the shape of the neb, and also the use of different coloured shadings.

Regarding M-57. Too much light on the ring, so I would darken it, and the hole from what I remember is much smaller (?). I love the way you do the stars. Again, your sketch will no doubt outdo my first attempt at this one too.
It's easier for me to comment (I know) than having to actually do one of these sketches. So don't take my opinion on it solely. Others are more qualified. But I have learnt something critiquing your work - I get to learn how to do it because I am examining it so much, so your helping me!

Well done, keep them coming. I'm enjoying these sketches.
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  #32  
Old 21-09-2010, 06:16 PM
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Following a suggestion on this forum, I have found smudge sticks to be very useful for smudging graphite on white. I find they give good control over the smudging compared to using my finger.
I've also heard of mouldable erasers, apparently they're sort of like a 'putty' and can be manipulated into any shape. Such a thing could work wonders for working in fine detail.
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  #33  
Old 22-09-2010, 11:52 AM
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I've also heard of mouldable erasers, apparently they're sort of like a 'putty' and can be manipulated into any shape. Such a thing could work wonders for working in fine detail.
Just got one of these - looking forward to trying it out.

Micheal and Suzy, thanks for the feedback, much appreciated.
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  #34  
Old 22-09-2010, 12:34 PM
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Don't think I've quite got the lighting yet to photograph/scan the sketches and the edges on the dark lanes of M8 look too sharp.

Hi Paddy,

One thing that helps me is squinting at the image I'm reproducing on black paper. It helps me gauge the intensity of the 'ruddings' or soft details. If you squint at your picture of M8, you will see how the dark lanes become even more pronounced, and M57 is so much like "through the scope" like.

What this technique does is help you in determining how much to work the white pencil. Starting really soft and then intensifying the white is easier than trying to remove the white, which sometimes can't be done.

I squint all the time with my black repro's.

It is all a thing about practice and trying and using paper and trial and error. No right or wrong.

Reason why I don't smudge, even though it can give a more life-like appearance, is my own drawing background, where my teachers said "if you need to rely on smudging, you are not controlling the pencil- it's controlling you". Now this has become a cross I bare!!

I feel like a recovering alcoholic "go on, just one little rub, it's not cheating"
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  #35  
Old 22-09-2010, 03:51 PM
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Hi Paddy,

One thing that helps me is squinting at the image I'm reproducing on black paper. It helps me gauge the intensity of the 'ruddings' or soft details. If you squint at your picture of M8, you will see how the dark lanes become even more pronounced, and M57 is so much like "through the scope" like.

What this technique does is help you in determining how much to work the white pencil. Starting really soft and then intensifying the white is easier than trying to remove the white, which sometimes can't be done.

I squint all the time with my black repro's.

It is all a thing about practice and trying and using paper and trial and error. No right or wrong.

Reason why I don't smudge, even though it can give a more life-like appearance, is my own drawing background, where my teachers said "if you need to rely on smudging, you are not controlling the pencil- it's controlling you". Now this has become a cross I bare!!

I feel like a recovering alcoholic "go on, just one little rub, it's not cheating"
Very interesting indeed. With squinting, are you softening the focus or reducing the light? Your advice about starting really soft is very helpful also.
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  #36  
Old 22-09-2010, 05:19 PM
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Regarding M-57. Too much light on the ring, so I would darken it
Hi Patrick,
I have just realised that your scope is a 16" and obviously things are brighter. Is M-57 then as bright as your sketch? If so, permission to roll up the tv guide and flick it on my head .
I hope I wasn't sounding harsh with your sketches Patrick. I think I may have been, in trying to be constructive (not that i really know what I'm talking about yet )

What is the protocol on submitting sketches? In the astro section they are open for critique. Is that to happen here, or do we post without requiring the feedback. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings (as I thought I may have with Patrick's).
If it helps any, when I put my M-57 sketch up- I will leave it wide open for 100% cross examination - honest! I'll take it
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  #37  
Old 22-09-2010, 06:15 PM
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Hi Patrick,
I have just realised that your scope is a 16" and obviously things are brighter. Is M-57 then as bright as your sketch? If so, permission to roll up the tv guide and flick it on my head .
I hope I wasn't sounding harsh with your sketches Patrick. I think I may have been, in trying to be constructive (not that i really know what I'm talking about yet )

What is the protocol on submitting sketches? In the astro section they are open for critique. Is that to happen here, or do we post without requiring the feedback. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings (as I thought I may have with Patrick's).
If it helps any, when I put my M-57 sketch up- I will leave it wide open for 100% cross examination - honest! I'll take it
Hi Suzy,

Yes, M57 through my scope looks pretty much like my sketch. It is a very impressive item for a big scope and quite like a monochrome version of astro photographs. I took no offence as I figured that you wouldn't have seen it like this through a telescope. I found your thoughts on M 8 interesting and want to have another look to see if it fits. I did find it hard with the pastel to get the brightness in exactly the right spot. I recall noticing in the scope that the brightest part was in the middle of the top wedge nebulosity in the sketch and I felt I did this better in the original graphite sketch, but your comment makes me want to look more deeply. Which to me is what sketching is about and what I value in feedback and why I ask for it. So I was not offended and I appreciate that you took the time to really look and put some comments down. They've helped me learn and look again. So from my point of view, this is exactly what I want in the forum. Please not even gentle self hitting with tv guide, but I look forward to your sketches. And more sketches and comments from others as well.
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  #38  
Old 28-09-2010, 09:59 PM
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It's been raining buckets or been overly cloudy for the last 3 weeks and I haven't been able to attempt my sketch yet. I think most of us have been affected by bad weather of late haven't we. Can we make this challenge a September/October challenge?

Molly (M54) told me she is going to do a sketch as well, so there is at least two more to come.

Shelley, are you going to join us in a sketch?

For those interested in further sketching tips or adding some tips, Michael has posted a separate thread in the observations category, entitled, "sketching tips".
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  #39  
Old 28-09-2010, 11:01 PM
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I think I've got a few September sketches in my archive of pgc hunter gold. I'll chuck on a few tomorrow night.
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  #40  
Old 29-09-2010, 12:30 AM
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With squinting, are you softening the focus or reducing the light?

Both. It is a tool to assit with contrast control. Even though we are working on black paper, the stuff still has its sheen, and the ambiant light we are working with creates glare. Squinting helps tone down these, gives us another point of view, & as a control method.

Clouds and circumstance have been foiling my attempts to get under the stars. Hopefully, this weekend...

I've started compyling a list of targets for the October Challenge. I hope when it's up that it doesn't stop folks still contributing to this outstanding month's Challenge. I'm stunned at its 'success'.

Orestis submitted a sketch in another thread of his obs. with binoculars. I'm carefully selecting one or two targets tailor made for binos! There are a few objects out there where a scope is just overkill, and just won't do. So, if you only have binos, keep your eyes open for next month's Challenge.

Pgc hunter, I look forward to your archived sketches.
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