Hey, I've been doing drawings with a focus on shading, and have been using a normal #2 pencil. It takes a long time and is hard to get subtle value changes, and I thought it was just me. I just found a post on artrenewal.org - Virgil Elliot equated cast drawing in pencil to scrubbing the floor with a toothbrush. He said he doesn't like to torture his students, and makes them draw with vine charcoal instead of pencil. What do you think?
I am confused about terms. 2H, 4B, &c. 'sketching pencils' are graphite, right?
Charcoal (not vine charcoal) has fixatives in it and has a wood sheath like a pencil does?
Vine charcoal looks like a burnt stick off a tree and is easily erased?
What's compressed charcoal like?
Any particular brands you recommend?
When using charcoal to achieve an 'academic finish', is a smudge stick usually used?
Does anyone know any sites, tutorials, or books I could read to learn how to draw in charcoal? I'd like to learn to use it even if pencil works just fine. According to the Bargue Course book, (until I get enough money I'm confined to the "Search this Book" feature on Amazon )
"...you should not use it as a beginner without instruction; the use of charcoal presents too many difficulties to solve by yourself."
How do you scan it? I'd think it would get all over. Are there fixatives? Which are the best?