Big Magic and Water-Soluble Graphite

Clouds (Reflections)

Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!  I suppose you thought you would never hear from me again.  Let’s just say, I am glad 2015 is over.  And I decided 2016 was going to be different, better!  And that my creativity must have a place in my life.  I must make it a priority instead of trying to find space for it around all of my other responsibilities.  It will still be challenging.

I put Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert on hold many months ago, and lucky me, I started reading it in December – just in time for the new year.  I found her book to be inspiring and the kick-in-the-pants that I needed.  In case you don’t know, Big Magic is a book about creativity.  Not only did she explain how creativity works – a lot of hard work and…, but she also gently destroyed some of our creative excuses for not being creative.  I am going to have to buy this book.

One of the issues she mentioned is the money trap.  I do think about that.  If people do not buy my work, how will I continue to create?  I finally decided that if I ran out of all of my supplies, specifically my pastels, I should still be able to afford paper and graphite.

While in my local art supply store, United Art and Education, I recently discovered water-soluble graphite pencils.  Oh my goodness!  I thought it would be just the most fun.  And it was!  One of the reasons I didn’t particularly care for graphite was because of the small tip, the pencil point, from which I had to do all of the shading.  I know about graphite sticks, but I just wasn’t into the shading.  Now I could use a brush and water to quickly fill in.  One excuse now eliminated.  Ironically, using water-soluble graphite didn’t make the drawing process go any more quickly.  There was still a lot of mental activity going on there.  I learned that water-soluble graphite doesn’t erase well, even with an electric eraser.  For those of you who heard me say that I would never own one –  yes, I finally bought an electric eraser.   Additionally, I was dealing with the process of letting my work dry between layers of application.  I really liked the texture of the smooth water-soluble graphite next to the texture of regular graphite.

Note: The pencils that I bought didn’t erase well.  I have since learned about Lyra water-soluble graphite sticks that claim they don’t stain and are erasable.  I intend to get some.

More examples.

Eagle Marsh 1


Smith Road

I did do some digital erasing to add some highlights.


Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible;
and suddenly you are doing the impossible.
– Francis of Assisi



One thought on “Big Magic and Water-Soluble Graphite

  1. Pingback: The Beginning of a Series | Lisa Ransom Smith

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s