Paint with Charcoal

by Lisa Larrabee

Charcoal is both bold and forgiving.  You can blend and smudge charcoal or sharpen it to draw with precision.  Charcoal is a staple in most drawing classes, but did you know that you can also paint with it?

If you mix charcoal powder with water, you can paint using a process that is similar to watercolor.  The charcoal powder often pools and settles creating interesting patterns as it dries.  When the water evaporates, all that is left on the paper is the charcoal.  This charcoal can now be manipulated using traditional dry charcoal techniques.  You can blend, erase and add details using blending stumps, charcoal sticks and charcoal pencils.


Quick & Bold Graphite Studies

   by Lisa Larrabee

Graphite is a staple for any artist.  It can be used for a variety of purposes from doodles to stunning finished works of art.  It is stable, easy to transport and very forgiving.  It is also inexpensive and convenient. There's a good chance you are near a graphite pencil as you read this, so you can join in with the Art Challenge!  
Graphite can be used in a variety of ways.  For the purpose of creating quick studies, I will stick with a medium hardness HB pencil. You can also use a classic #2 yellow pencil with the pink eraser.  Nothing fancy is needed.