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Astrophotography and Sketching >> Sketching

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Fuzzyguy
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/21/11

Loc: Colorado/Kansas
Blending tool
      #5457975 - 10/06/12 01:47 PM

Hi all,

Several people have suggested that I start to sketch so I can improve my ability to see details at the scope. I'm not an artist nor have I had any formal art training other than elementary school art class 45 years ago! After reading some tutorials, I put together a small sketching kit with different hardness pencils, paper, an assortment of erasers, a flexible straight edge and a "smudge stick" or "blending" tool.

My question is, does the blending tool need to be "broken in"? If so, what is the best way to do it. Also, what do I need to do to maintain it?

I'm looking forward to start sketching at the scope as soon as the weather clears. Seems the "curse" is also brought on with new sketching equipment! I don't expect to make drawings of the quality I see on this forum any time soon, but if I can develop my seeing, all's good! Any other tips for a sketching newbie are also appreciated.

Thanks!!


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azure1961p
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/17/09

Loc: USA
Re: Blending tool new [Re: Fuzzyguy]
      #5458284 - 10/06/12 06:20 PM

Blending stumps benefit from light sanding to give a soft felt like texture to the paper. It blends smoother with less hard spot or edge issues.

A sandpaper around 80 To 100 grit is good.

Pete

Edited by azure1961p (10/06/12 06:21 PM)


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Fuzzyguy
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/21/11

Loc: Colorado/Kansas
Re: Blending tool new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5459814 - 10/07/12 08:24 PM

Thanks Pete! I'll give that a try. Do you usually do this every time, multiple times per sketch or just once? If it's an ongoing thing, I'll just put some sandpaper in the box with the rest of the stuff!

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azure1961p
Postmaster
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Reged: 01/17/09

Loc: USA
Re: Blending tool new [Re: Fuzzyguy]
      #5465673 - 10/11/12 04:55 PM

Hi Larry, sorry for the late reply...

Its like this...

Ill initially do some scuff sanding when its new just to give it a soft cottony-felt kinda of feel. This nap holds graphite or pastel chalks better as the fine fibers act a little like a dry paintbrush.

Now...

If Im changing colors Ill have an eraser [white staedtler] though preferably an electric eraser and i turn the tip on it letting the eraser remove as much as it can. Then I will scuff once again with sandpaper sometimes scultping a finer point. If Im not changing colors I wont bother. Once its broken in with sandpaper its generally good. For the finest details that might require a surgical point, I dont sand at all.

A piece of sandpaper, prefereably 60 grit can act as a nice eraser of the stump itself when the stump in question is quite large. The finer onces do better with 80 to 100 grit.

For general lighting of an entire area with no discernable erasing streaks consider skum-x - also known as drafting powder. Sprinkled over a drawing and moved around, these little bits of easer act to generally lighten an entire image - in drafting they act as a dry lubricant for which straight edges, triangles and templates can floart around without scuffing the drawing - oh the good old days.

Pete


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