Sarah Garforth – Drawing Techniques

Sarah Garforth gave a talk to the Pateley Bridge Art Club on some of her drawing, painting and printing methods, illustrated with her artworks.

Sarah is a well known Nidderdale artist with a studio in Ramsgill. She described how she immerses herself in the countryside, sketching local scenes.

She sketches, takes notes and collects samples to help with her studio paintings.

She adds colour notes in her sketchbook whilst travelling.

Sarah also showed us her drawing materials, including graphite sticks in dark, darker and even darker. They have useful pointed end, flats and hexagonal edges and ends for creating varying marks and shading.

Sarah enjoys making dip pens of elder twigs. She makes a point and a cut to delivery ink from the soft middle. They make interesting varying lines.

She draws with willow charcoal, clutch pencils that have thick pointed leads in limited shades and Mitsubishi Uniball eye micro pens.

Sarah showed us one of her drawing on Japanese Gampi paper.

For sketching scenes on location, Sarah also uses an Elegant Writer calligraphy pen with a chisel edge to make marks in varying widths. The ink can be spread with a water pen to separate into shades of blue and grey.

Sarah showed us her sketchbooks compiled on her travels. She includes descriptions of places visited and includes local collected images.

Sarah has developed her interest in printing methods. The drypoint method involves scratching into a soft plate to create a printable image.  The plate is not as durable as engraved plates.

Sarah showed us a couple of impressive monoprints. They were produced by indents made with a wooden tool into Japanese vellum paper placed over plexiglass that had been inked with water based lino ink. The process creates lines on the other side of the paper of a different nature to those created directly by pen or pencil.

The solar plate printing method requires a detailed drawing. The image is transferred to a polymer covered metal plate using daylight that reaches the plate through the drawing. The plate is processed in water to fix the indents. The completed solar plate can be used to print many images.

A print from the solar plate.

Sarah also showed us the way that a range of Daniel Smith watercolours can be used to split into constituent parts to make interesting paintings.

Sarah Garforth’s work s can be seen at >
There are also details of her monoprints and working methods in her blog.

Details of the Ramsgill Gallery >


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