Saturday, February 9, 2013

Cleopatra: More Gestures and Rough Sketches

Gesture drawing of Cleopatra and Mark Antony
Here are some more of the gesture drawings that I did during the planning for the final illustration of Cleopatra. They vary between vertical and horizontal layouts. One of them includes a barge in the background.

Gesture drawings, in general, are very spontaneous creations. In my case, I often use a ball point pen for the gestures. These were probably done with my favorite, the Pilot Fine-Point Retractable pen. It allows a very fluid, softly nuanced line that's not really possible with a technical pen that uses permanent or india ink. That is a much blacker ink, and the pen produces a more even, less subtle line. For that reason, it's not always easy to capture the same expressions in the final illustrations. Personally, I really enjoy and appreciate these gesture drawings more than I do the final illustrations ~ especially in the case of these little sketches of Cleopatra. The accidental expression in the Cleopatra at the top of the page is ambiguous. It could be interpreted as one of boredom, petulance, strategy, or slight dread. Below are some more gesture drawings using a slightly different composition.

two gestures of Cleopatra
Two similar rough sketches of Cleopatra

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