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2.2 Finishing Off the Gradient Scale

In this lesson we will continue with our gradation scale boxes and fill in the last few numbers.

2.2 Finishing Off the Gradient Scale

Now we're onto box number seven. So this one is going to be even darker than number six obviously. And we're just going to keep dotting it in until we've matched the value of the color solid box above it. At this point, your dots will probably be touching one another. It might look quite chaotic. But the human eye, when you step away from it, it actually turns it into a solid, smooth valley. If you've been dabbing evenly across. So don't worry about how it looks close up. Most people will never get that close to it. And you can fill your boxes however you like. I generally tend to go left to right. And as you can see here I'm kind of working my way up and down some rows. Sometimes I go diagonally, sometimes top to bottom, bottom to top It doesn't really matter. It's whatever is comfortable for you. I know some people like to make shapes as they go along. I'm just going back over one last broad time to try and cover. Any white spots that are too big and then also to push the value so that it is darker than the last one. All right. So there's number seven. Now we're onto box number eight, and this is where you finally get to use that trick that I was telling you about earlier. So the first thing that we're gonna do is fill in this box solidly. With the same value of dots that we had in number seven. This is gonna be our base layer. Then we're gonna add another layer on top of this to make it darker, but we aren't gonna put a layer of dots. Instead we're gonna do a layer of squiggly lines. So first thing that we're gonna do, we're just working our way left to right, laying down that base layer of value seven dots. Now that we have the layer of value seven dots, we're gonna go and add the second layer on top of it. And it's going to be just those free form squiggles that I was telling you about. So the reason this trick works is you leave behind a series of white dots on the paper. And it's these dots that tell the viewer that the black is made up of a series of dots. And not a series of lines. So, if you're a purist you can skip this step and just keep making it all with dots. But if you'd like to speed things a little bit, like I do. Then using a series of squiggly lines and just moving around to make sure you don't get too dark in one spot. Is a great way to save time and give your hand a little bit of a break. I'm just going around getting rid of some of the extra white spots that are showing off a bit too much of the line work. And then we're done with box number 8. Alright, in our last box here, box number 9. So we're going to start going in and we're going to repeat exactly what we did in eight. Except that we're going to add more squiggles when we get to that point. So again you're just gonna lay out an even layer of dots equal to about a six or seven. And that just gives us a base on which to play with the squiggle lines. And make sure that things appear to the eye to be quite evenly spaced out and dotted. Now if you want to be a purist about it, you can just keep dotting until you get to almost pure black. It does take quite a bit of time, but you can do it. Otherwise this trick works really quite well. So we'll just keep dotting. Over half way here. By now you've probably developed a little bit of a rhythm and have figured out what pace and spacing you like best with your pen. It's always a good idea to, if your pen like mine is at a slight angle, to keep rotating it slightly in your hand as you go. Just as you do with normal pencils when you write. And that way you make sure that you don't blunt out the tip on one side. So now we can go in and just make one of those free form squiggles. And this time we're gonna add another layer on top to make it near that black that we need. So there's no right or wrong here, just keep squiggling away. In the end, nobody will be able to tell what the lines actually looked like, because it will just appear to be a series of very dark, very dense dots. So, if you prefer angular or circular lines, that's fine. So I'm adding another layer here. What we want at the end is to just have a few very small white areas. This will help to trick the eye. If you fill it in completely, nobody will believe that you actually did it with dots. [LAUGH] So you wanna leave a few small white spots. All right, so there you go. You've got the entire gradation scale from zero to nine, white to black. We've learned a few tricks along the way and hopefully you've gotten much more comfortable using your pen. We're going to move on and start sketching our portraits. And we're going to be using this scale quite a bit to help us to do our first pointillism portrait together.

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