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Watercolor speedpaint

Friday 7 August 2009
I bought this little sketchblock, that has a rather low weight but it suited for inks and water-based paints. Strangely, it works: the water doesn't pass through _ although the paper tends to go all wrinkled. I automatically found it convenient for speed painting.

I did that one between two mouthfuls of corn flakes. I have this big table that occupies nearly the entire room, that endures the function of drawing area, paper storage, dining table, computer desk, candle holder and much more ( not to mention its glorious past has multi-users office table, and as .. hmm no, let's shut that part).
090805 Home desk - Watercolor speedpaint
Well despite it was speed-painting I arrived very late at work. I like the painting. Was caught: a bottle of painting medium, a Delirium Tremens beer, sketchbooks, a candle, an Ikea cutlery bucket converted to a pencils pot, a small canvas for my dad with lineart longing for some paint for ten years, the awesome and inspiring 2008 Aubade photo calendar, my psychotic interpretation of the black baroque wallpaper, and that's it!


090808 Cafe - Watercolor speed paint
There is also this quick watercolor sketch, done on the terrace of
a bar in Arcachon, on the basin shore. Weather was dull and girlfriend pushed to hurry, so it ended up lightspeed watercolor ( ten minutes is cruel timing for the slow me) but I also like how the foam ended up looking tasty.

quelques dessins du Canada

Friday 24 July 2009
090628 Dessin rapide aéroport CDG

Ici c'est à l'aéroport, un croquis d'une salle d'attente en contre-bas. C'était étrange, il n'y avait absolument que des femmes sur ces bancs (je n'ai même pas eu le temps de les dessiner toutes)

090629 Dessin Elodie Blindfold

J'ai essayé de dessiner dans l'avion bien que l'on fut un peu trop serrés. Elodie s'était endormie, une modèle bien sage que voici, mais ce bandeau lui faisait vraiment une drôle de tête, toute allongée vers le haut. Mon dessin était assez ressemblant je me souviens; mais dans la vraie vie, ma cousine est beaucoup plus jolie que là!

090708 Forest trees in quebec
Trees. Lots of. We've been traveling north in a rental car, doing some camping, hiking, canoe and other sightseeing. The weather wasn't too nice to us, and we felt like we spent most time in logistics hence the lack of drawings. But we were lucky enough to meet with a bunch of wild animals and take a whole lot of pictures.

090710 Drawing People in montreal

Here are some people doodled. Even a doodle of a doodling man. Another kind of forest, the crowd when you sit down. Not some good sketches here, which outlines the fact that practicing should be a everyday habit.

Below is a little watercolor that I painted for my friends Pat & Anna. It represents a view from their balcony, from the house where they kindly hosted us in Montréal.
090712 Aquarelle pour Pat & Anna
I made it the day of their wedding, and sent the postcard the next day so that they receive it in their mailbox after we went back to France. This way, they would get both the surprise and the stamp with wedding date ( almost) and their home address as a souvenir.Postal art is always at risks, but it arrived perfectly safe!

Moleskine pages

Thursday 25 June 2009

Those are recent sketches from my Moleskine notebook, which is small enough to fit in a pocket, my little companion of eclectic doodles and those moments when you have to watch the time pass.

Drawing of Aunties' house in Astaffort, south west France

A house in Astaffort, small typical village in south west France, a place I much endear, holding memories of my most innocent childhood _ and my mother's and grandmother's as well. Smells of sun and wood and of deep countryside, the company of sheep and dogs, and the warm laughter of my aunties.

Drawing of St Emilion Cloitre Eglise Collegiale

In the cloister of Collégiale church, in St Emilion, where was held a talk by philosophers Barbara Cassin and Heinz Wismann in a sunny afternoon, as part of a festival of philosophy.

Insomniac drawing of a busy kitchen

Middle night insomnia, no place else but the busy kitchen not to wake up the lady, and in the traced lines, retrieve the peace needed for a proper sleep.

absolution in stone

Monday 25 May 2009
Martina Topley-Bird Sandpaper kisses


There's no actual point about drawing churches and cathedrals in terms of creativity. That was a big task and I deepened into it because all in all, it made much more sense than just sticking inside my head and observe the failure of my feelings and my behaviors.
Detailing the whole sight was basically intended as a humble gift to someone deserving much more but also a self-inflicted punishment in practice. Though I was happy of it eventually (except the large dark slate roof that ended up messy due to watercolor on bad paper) and feel ready for another intricate image of spiritual and severity symbolism whenever it is needed to bring that troubled man into line.
The drawing is a view of the gothic cathedral Notre-Dame de Rouen ( link ), seen from a fifth floor apartment, almost facing the south portal. The paper is like A2 format and it took about 12 hours of standing on a small balcony. Luckily, I had a very compassionate weather on my side. Clicking on the image pops up the full picture in original cropping.
Sorry for being both confused and mystic again. ;)

Dessin de la cathédrale de Rouen, encre et aquarelle

But i heard the flutter

Saturday 28 February 2009

Finally, after showing I was such a hopeless procrastinator, I managed to post the painting that I finished a few months ago. This is gloomy, you are warned ! You can go check: Pas d'Ange

As an apologies, and since you've been patients, or for equity of genders, or maybe because, if we please to close our eyes long enough, they could come if we want to, i offer you an angel.

An angel

Cyclopean friends

Saturday 3 January 2009

We spent our time lazying with Isa & Estelle in a beautiful winter day, involving picnic with oysters on the desert Bassin d'Arcachon, shooting silly photos under the sunset on the ocean's shore, finding a restaurant in the freezing cold evening after being stopped at the door of ten of crowded them, sketching guests on tables, then a last drink at La Comtesse, a well known bar with baroque decoration.
There I pictured the two girls in cyclopes, which is weird I must agree.
It was rather dark so I used only a black marker, I'm a bit uneasy with this technique that doesn't allow any correction, but is highly formative eventually.


090102 Drawing Estelle&Isa in cyclopes at La Comtesse

Below is a sand sketch of the girls playing frisbee. Indeed we are 5 year old ;)
090102 Sand Drawing Isa & Estelle playing Frisbee

Two drawings

Friday 26 December 2008

These are two small drawings that I made as gifts for my cousin and my sister.
The stress of last-minute missing gifts helped a lot there, since I managed to draw both in a row during the same afternoon before christmas. From scratch ( idea, sketches, drawing and framing ) it took me 3 hours for both. Wow, I had never been that fast!
With help from some blurry and noisy photographs I attempted to have the drawing actually look like them. My cousin is a singer, she likes old fashioned flower patterns and deep carmine colors. My sister is a dancer so I made her moving in a swirl.

There is watercolor, ultra thin Copic waterproof ink pencils ( black and sepia ), Some Tombow and Copic markers over watercolor paper ( first one ) and layout paper ( second). Both are 10x15 cm in size ( 4x6 '' )

081224 Two drawings for cousin and sister

Sketches from Paris

Saturday 11 October 2008

Last weekend I went to Paris, officially to visit my dear cousin, but also as a shy attempt to leave the company just for one full working day _ I hadn't done that in months _
The relative franticness of the journey still managed to leave me with several occasions to doodle.

The first one was done in the train, and made the trip pass faster. The shape of the, sort of, tablecloth, is supposed to make a pair of butterfly wings for the girl. The perspective is odd, and the image happens to look better upside down, but this is the orientation I drew it, and it has to remain this way to get the butterfly effect correct.


081003 Dessin fille dans une nappe qui lui fait des ailes de papillon

The drawing below is a view of my cousin's apartment. The viewpoint is from my standing position. I did a quick graphite sketch for the structural lines, shaded it with 4 shades of grey markers ( Copics ), then traced the outlines over with a black ballpoint pen. At that step I messed up with the direction of the floor's lines, and attempted to correct that but there's nothing much that could be done unfortunately.


081004 My cousin apartment gray markers sketch by Zancan

I took my _ way too small _ cousin's bike for a ride to explore the riverside a bit. It was a rather chilly end of the afternoon, and humid because of the recent rain, and windy, and the place where I sat was isolated and strange looking. Thus I hurried the drawing more than I wanted. Despite the wonky bridge I like how it turned out for some reason; it looks better than in real. This is a place in north Paris, after the tip of the Ile-saint-Denis.


081004 Riverside Landscape Sketch With Markers by Zancan

Below is a series of sketches I did in the train while going back to Bordeaux. In the beginning, I was stuck between the window and a rather antipathetic salesman reading space-invading sports newspapers _ not the kind of situation that triggers creativity_
It took a little while before the event of a young lady walking in the central alley caught my bored attention. I'll spare you the details of her description, but I can say it, she was very beautiful a lady. You could tell there was wind blowing in her blonde hair as she walked in slow motion, just like in shampoo ads. After passing by and passing again she decided to sit on the very seat in front of me in diagonal ( which was unfortunately sketch-proof). Then we got controlled and oh! From the controller's perspective she was kinda cheating, although she kept claiming it wasn't her fault. Well, without judging anyone, evil me used the occasion to draw something interesting at last, and the controller really looked like, and acted like Mr Bennett. You know, Claire's stepfather in Heroes. The lady seemed angry, and I truly pitied, such a beauty mustn't get used to men being rude at her very often. :P _eviiiil_ The unbending agent stood there long enough while writing his bill, to allow a rather faithful portrait.


081006 Graphic pencil sketch of a railway agent controlling a girl

Napping travelers have this advantage of standing still for long enough to get properly portrayed. Moreover I love the feeling that emanates from their sleep, a blend of beauty and innocence is simply adorable to capture.
The following sleeping girl was wearing a romantic black dress and had a labret piercing.


081006 Graphite Pencil drawing of a girl asleep in a train

There was this other girl gently asleep with her head leaning against the window, two or three seats away. I sketched her in a quite disinterested manner. But when the wagon got sparse after a stop at the last station, she happened to move on the seats on my left side, right across the alley. I thought I was becoming flagrant but still, she offered her sleepiness to my crayons' pleasure until our destination was reach. That moment was really cute.


081006 Pencil Sketch of a girl sleeping in a train

Window view

Friday 26 September 2008
080926 Aquarelle - Place de la Halle des chartrons
This is the view from my window on the west side of the apartment. It offers a nice view point over the Place de la Halle des Chartrons, a quiet square in Bordeaux that feels the lazy atmosphere of a southern french village in old summertime days.

I painted it using watercolors on a postcard-sized paper; put a stamp on the back and it makes a nice gift to send to someone dear. Although I'm not quite sure how much postal services can be trusted for that task.

Below is the view from my front door, when I get home late. The church Saint Louis des Chartrons has a relaxing, protective effect on me, when I walk along its porch or rest under its gaze.
080936 Eglise Saint Louis des Chartrons

Through summer with grayscale sketches

Monday 14 July 2008
Still sketches make the life look like a tranquil string of days.
It's not exactly the case, to say the truth. However, those drawn tidbits are the witness of moments when the pace slows down until it nearly stops, suspended to the sliding of a pencil's tip, or to the fragile silence of a posing model. I never cease to value the income of slowness.
The only moments when I manage to be doing nothing is when I'm drawing one of those sketches from life. And I could be doing nothing for hours if I was authorized so.

Technically speaking, I'm starting to feel more comfortable with markers. I appreciate the easy setup, that allow to start a sketch while standing in the tramway's crowd between two stations. However I'm still not sure of what felt-tip brand / paper type to use so I tend to try out many at random. Layout paper doesn't come in small convenient sketchbooks from what I've seen so far.

The pictures below show some of those drawings. You can click on thumbnails to get a popped up view.
various grayscale sketches by zancan
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7/8/2009 Watercolor speedpaint
26/8/2009 someone saw him paint