Here's a better 'cylindrical shapes' sketch, as promised. I'm pretty happy with the composition. I think several of the elipses are slightly wonky, but most of them look correct to me. Perfecting my ability to draw them is an ongoing mission. The objects are correctly proportioned, they look grounded, and are in the correct places. So overall, I'd say this picture is a success.
Now on to the more recent, but less-successful endeavours... *sigh*
Observing Shadow and Light Formations on a Surface
As I worked on this exercise, I ended up with sketches strewn all over the page. I've taken the better ones and re-organised them somewhat on the computer to make this post more coherent.
To begin, I took a few simple objects- a plastic goblet, a small plastic cup and a cardboard tube- and placed them together onto a table. I was relying on natural light streaming in from the conservatory. I completely forgot that natural light has a nasty habit of changing when you're half-way through your sketch. Thus, these sketches are not my best. The shadows went from dark and clear to vague, and back again, every minute or so, which put me off.
I moved the objects on to a different table, hoping that the light would create more distinct shadows, but that really didn't work. I just ended up with different vague shadows.
Here are some more 'finished' sketches:
At this point I just gave up and figured I'd have to attempt this exercise again at some point with a better light source. Oh well.
Tonal StudiesToday's exercise was, if I'm honest, a complete disaster. The first part was to draw out some squares of cross-hatching with different materials and decide which to use for my tonal study.
On my first attempt, I started with dip pen and ink. The ink spilt over the paper. So I started again. The tip of my carbon pencil broke as I was finishing up my first square. I tried to sharpen it, but it broke again. Now my sharpener's not working either. My hand was shaking pretty badly as I worked, so a lot of the hatching lines are wobbly and I ended up making some squares darker than I intended- thus the second square on the top row, drawn with a liquid ink pen, doesn't follow the pattern of all the others. The charcoal also got smudged a bit before I fixed the drawing, so that part is a mess.
I'm not going to show the tonal study I attempted after this; the line sketch was bad enough, and then it just got worse when I tried to add in the shadows with hatching. It's incredibly frustrating, as I know I can do so much better, but it's just not working at all today. I'll just have to take a short break and try again until I produce something half-decent.