The scene was a a stunning view of a backlit forest just below a lookout point and was so complex with all the trees, rising hillside and lighting that it was overwhelming. Although I knew my emotional reaction to the scene, I did not know what pictorial elements caused my reaction. I made a few quick thumbnail sketches but did not get a sense of direction from them. I finally decided to take my time, relax, get into a nonjudgmental frame of mind and just draw what I saw. The resulting sketch is the one you see above on this post.
When I finished, I left this sketch on the easel, stood back several feet and and became judgmental. I asked and answered questions such as, “What do I like about the actual scene? Does my sketch capture what I like? Are there parts of the sketch that I like or dislike? Does the sketch have depth, distance, rhythms? How can I rearrange the sketch to better capture what I like?” I made a few more thumbnail sketches and then began on the second sketch, the one I posted yesterday. The thinking work of sketching is hard but it makes a big difference in the quality of the finished sketch.
This is a pen and watercolor sketch on white 9 X 12 watercolor paper.