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Does Anyone Use Conte Crayons?

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posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 11:40 AM
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Hello ATS,
So I'm sitting here at the art desk working on some new concept art for my comic book. I had decided to use mediums I dont use often anymore just to brush up a little bit. Particularly I am using Conté à Paris white crayon on black artgain 90lb paper. I was curious if anyone here uses this medium all the time or if anyone out there does reverse highlight often? I use sepia, sequin, and black Conte all the time for sketching before oil paints but I have never made a full finished drawing using just Conte as the medium. Please share art and tips for me? Thanks again in advance ATS artists!


edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 11:43 AM
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a reply to: Brotherman



Particularly I am using Conté à Paris white crayon on black artgain 90lb paper.

Damn that's heavy paper. How do you keep from breaking your back lifting it?



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 11:44 AM
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a reply to: Skid Mark
Lol the paper weight has more to do with how much a full stack from a roll weighs. The weight determines the rigidness and thickness individually by weighing the total sum or some ***t like that



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 12:16 PM
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a reply to: Brotherman
I was being "funny". Thanks for the explanation though.



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 12:18 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark
I knew you were screwing around. I threw that out there anyways, I've been interested in different types of paper recently as I'm trying to find advantages and hurdles when using different materials anyways.

Grrr I'm trying to figure out mid tones with these crayons and I'm not having much success either!
edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 01:03 PM
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I think I'm getting there, I'm going to say that fixative is a must!!!
edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 01:34 PM
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a reply to: Brotherman

When you say 'crayons,' is that an American term for pastels? In Europe we call them pastels and they're like chalks. I used to use them years ago on black sugar paper mostly. Had a phase of drawing animals in motion and then trying to use a lot of colours to capture the movement. Sorta like Franz Marc used variety of colours for animals but with the softer shades of the pastels.

The 'fixative' was something I didn't use enough of. My favourites were of racing greyhounds using a sunset palette and a focus on yellow. Big A2 sheets kept in a portfolio and always being moved around. The colours rubbed off and all the magic was lost.

I like what you've got there and especially as you've got the blending down. That takes a lot of mistakes to learn as I screwed up many times by over blending. No going back is there? Too much and the thing is screwed! As ever, I'm loving your stuff



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 01:36 PM
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a reply to: Brotherman

We had to use it as the main medium in a couple nudes that I drew in Drawing II in college--it was okay, and seemed to react similarly to the blendability of charcoal (my main medium when I draw) if my memory serves correctly...it was 13 years ago.

We did the drawings on newsprint, though, and we used red conte crayon for the dark, the paper for the mids, and white conte crayon for the highlights. It turned out oddly--my eyes didn't like that combination--but they worked out okay. If I get the itch (and remember) to snap a quick pic tonight at home, I'll load it up for you, assuming that drawings of a nude lady are allowed on here.

Also, your image isn't loading right now, so I'll have to check it out when I get home.
edit on 5-4-2016 by SlapMonkey because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 01:41 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

It would seem that they are compressed charcoal or graphite with a waxy base holding it altogether, which is why I assume people refer to them as crayons.

No, they are not the same thing as pastels or chalk.



Conte Crayons



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 01:41 PM
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a reply to: SlapMonkey

Load 'er up


As long as it's not erotic, it'll be okay.

ETA - yes, you're right. I remember using them in the past...not pastels, more waxy. It was the 'fixative' reference my mind latched on to.
edit on 4.5.2016 by Kandinsky because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 02:05 PM
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I've used Conte crayons an awful lot on canvas, newsprint, watercolor paper etc. As my sketch medium almost very heavily I've never used them as the begin and end medium for a finished piece before. I have also never used white on black artgain paper either which is making me confused because it doesn't move around like it does on other things. I figured id see how far I can push it and manipulate the medium in this way. Reverse charcoal/ reverse highlight for me is difficult enough as it is so any advice in this would be out-fu**ing-standing. I'll post a white back drop with sepia and black Conte crayon in a second.

Notice how the rigidness and movement is different even though I'm the same artist? White over black with this method is so drastically different I'm at a learning curve and I know it, and it hurts lol.
edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 02:28 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky
I'd really like to become an artist someday. Thanks for liking what I'm doing, its encouraging.

I'm so god damned frustrated difficult video games dont even make me this way. Lol ninja gaiden on nes comes close grrrrr!!!!!
edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 02:51 PM
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a reply to: Brotherman

You're a f****** artist already. Since when was income a measure of an artist? The best ones never made a living and some money makers don't shine a torch on the rest.



posted on Apr, 5 2016 @ 03:03 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky


I appreciate that. I will say what I am doing has a different meaning to me then something as simple as a title. I mean what does that mean anyways? I am a welder fabricator, been a us marine too, nothing means anything to me like this does, I'm not exactly sure if I am even drawing or painting at this point versus the idea something from the inside is trying to come through. Because I make things I don't think relegates me one way or the other because truthfully it feels like something inside is puking and it just happens to force ots way out no matter what the **** I do. Maybe I have a mental illness, maybe I really just that unhappy, I dont really know. Doing this is not a choice though no matter what I am called.
edit on 5-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 6 2016 @ 11:23 AM
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posted on Apr, 6 2016 @ 08:51 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

a reply to: Brotherman

Okay folks, here are the two that I mentioned earlier. The paper wasn't newsprint, it was butcher-type paper. Like you, Brotherman, these were just experiments, and we didn't pursue the medium any farther than that in class, nor did I like it very much (I do, however, like how your black conte crayon drawing look, so maybe I need to revisit it in black).

Anyhoo, disregard proportion and whatnot--these were both drawn in one class period (about 2 hours) from a live model, so they were a little rushed (but that was part of the assignment).





And since you (Brotherman) are using white on black, I figured I'd show you this one that I did in my Drawing I class--it was a lesson in drawing in the negative. We colored the entire paper (Reeves BFK...very nice paper) completely in black charcoal, then had to do the drawing with an eraser, removing as we went. We were allowed to go in and touch up some of the edges with a charcoal pencil at the end, but all of the shading values had to be achieved with the eraser.



Ignore the reflections...this one is on my wall in the living room in a frame.

The main things that I notice in your white-conte drawings is that you seem to rely too much on a harsh, bright white line where one wouldn't be in real life. Of course, I'm not sure what effect you are after, so that may be your goal, but the one with the open mouth and the teeth almost has a neon-lights look to it because of the very heavy white outlines. Maybe if you soften some of that up a bit, it would work a tad better for you.

But just experiment and keep at it (if you want to), and I'm sure you'll figure it out. You obviously have the whole "drawing thing" figured out, so it's just honing your technique. You'll get there.


ETA: I didn't notice the last post of yours with the progress on the (I assume) vampire drawing. It's much less neon-esque now. I think you'll get it all figured out without much trouble.
edit on 6-4-2016 by SlapMonkey because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 6 2016 @ 10:02 PM
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a reply to: SlapMonkey
The paper I was using no longer accepts the crayon its saturated and very light. I honestly wish I could move farther making things more life like (on the vampire) but literally the Conte crayon only scratches the paper. I highly suggest bring very articulate using white Conte on black 90lb artagain paper it takes it and doesn't give back! The other drawing behind the vampire is reverse charcoal, and Conte crayon I am attempting the reverse effect. I have to really think about what you said because your drawings are pretty rad!!!


Like I said I've played with the medium before but i never seem to keep interest in it longer then a sketch. This pic is one of the few life drawings I made and it was made with Conte crayons, I was wasted drunk and probably involved in a bit of token action. I still don't understand this medium its one of those I get motivated yo draw then halfway in I feel punished because I fuqqed the value and their is no undoing. I hate it
edit on 6-4-2016 by Brotherman because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 7 2016 @ 09:11 AM
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originally posted by: Brotherman
I have to really think about what you said because your drawings are pretty rad!!!


Ha, thanks...wasn't fishing for compliments, but I appreciate it.


I still don't understand this medium its one of those I get motivated yo draw then halfway in I feel punished because I fuqqed the value and their is no undoing. I hate it


I think you figured it out--art should be enjoyable, even if it is a challenge. If conte crayons are frustrating you and making you feel punished and hate working with it, just walk from it and use it only for sketching. That'd be my opinion, anyhow--life is to short to turn something that you enjoy (art) into something that feels like a punishment that you hate.



posted on Apr, 7 2016 @ 12:23 PM
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a reply to: SlapMonkey
All new things that can be difficult frustrates me, but I dont quit till I get it right and then I feel better then angry lol. In this particular case it is my paper that doesn't hold very well



posted on Apr, 8 2016 @ 02:04 AM
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I know how you feel Bro.... I can tell you this, it's like growing long hair... when hair grows to that midway length it doesn't look or feel right, and makes one want to cut it off... but once it's gets some length.... it's all good!

Till you get tired of messing with long hair!

and that's my terrible analogy... haha




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