"Bright, Dull, or Both"

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  • By Jeff Bergenstock
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"Bright, Dull, or Both"

This week’s blog will discuss pencil problems…

The hardest decision has to be made before we begin our work. Do we use color or not? Both have their time and place, but the basic choice can be daunting at times. The decision can be based upon mood, feel, depth, or other; but I want to remind you that either answer is correct. 


See, using color or not, is not a trend itself. This popularity is a circumstance of many factors. The most important factors would be time and appeal. 


Time can sway our pieces' end result based on our own level of effort. We make a choice to pick an easier route to save time or put in that extra work to seal the deal for good. I find myself using colored pencils to save time on a regular basis. It can be very time consuming to draw something in black and white, due to the amount of shading and fluidity that becomes present. It takes half the time to sketch, hard outline, and color a drawing. This method serves a purpose for me and I enjoy the outcome so my choice will be predetermined. For you, the outcome may not evoke the same energy, so the other path will suit your needs. 


Appeal is both an inside and outside force. We want to have an image that is lively, but we also want that playfulness to translate to others. We almost always choose color for appeal, but are our doubts about black and white wrong? The added time should add to the overall appeal; yet we still choose to color in our work. Some may view a black and white piece as old, simple, or dull; but the true artists know the work and persistence that goes into it. I almost always choose to not include color in my work if the piece has a special meaning to me. The added effort and simplicity conveys a mood that cannot be matched by anything else. 


If you want to find meaning in your work, follow your intuition, not time and appeal.



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