|Silverpoint study of rhinoceros. Silverpoint on a ground of Natural Pigments Traditional Silverpoint Ground on Crescent museum board. The ground was applied with a sponge, and tinted slightly with yellow ochre pigment.|
I spent a lovely several days in New Hampshire, taking a workshop in metalpoint with Koo Schadler.
Koo is a wonderful teacher and struck the perfect balance between history, information on the technique, and time to draw. She covered a wide range of supports and grounds, as well as a variety of metals, including silver, gold, copper, etc.
For those of you unfamiliar with metalpoint, it was a technique used by artists, including Albrecht Dürer and Leonardo da Vinci, before there were pencils as we know them today. When a metal wire - often silver - is drawn over an abrasive surface, it leaves a residue. It resembles a light pencil drawing, however, it does not behave like pencil. When silver or another metal leaves a mark, it cannot be easily erased. Over time, silver will tarnish, taking on a brownish tone, and copper may take on a greenish tone.
Deeper values are achieved by layering strokes. I use a technique called hatching, which consists of small lines applied in many layers.
|Detail showing layered strokes.|
Natural Pigments Traditional Silverpoint Ground