April 8th, 2016

Prairie Style Planter – Café Brauer – Lincoln Park, Chicago, Il.

Artist: Andrew Banks, United States
Artist Statement: My sketchbook is a record of my artistic process; a place for me to investigate and develop techniques and to record what inspires me. This Prairie Style planter is just one of many sketches in an ongoing series dedicated to the architecture of the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago. Sitting outside of the Prairie Style Café Brauer building, this large planter is one of several landscaping objects which complement the details of the café itself. I was drawn to the planter’s reference to classical detailing, while remaining evidently within the Prairie Style. I was also drawn to the symmetry and its contrast in color and material.

Penciling in a centerline, I began proportioning out the heights of each section of the planter, starting from the base and working my way up the top, lightly indicating each with a horizontal line. These horizontal lines became the skeleton of the drawing, giving me the information and size relationships I needed to draw the rest of the contours. Then, I inked over all lines with a thin black pen and once again over the entire contour of the planter with a thicker pen to give the appearance of depth and relief. I suggested the material of the concrete base by stippling. I then added some light grey tone with a brush pen to the concrete areas. Working from light to dark in color, the green top and metal ornament wrapping the base was also colored with a felt tip brush pen. The varying tones were achieved through multiple passes. Before applying each layer of green, I made sure the previous one had dried to avoid any unwanted smudging. Since the brush pen I used was transparent, building up tones was similar to water coloring, and so the more layers I added the more I was able to build up the values in the shadows as well as represent its circular form through a range of tones. The smooth surface of the Epsilon paper worked great for the “swiping” motions I used with the pen, and the paper held up really well to the multiple layers of ink.

MEDIA: Graphite, ink, brush pen
SURFACE: Epsilon Series – Heavyweight – 150 gsm – White – Smooth Surface

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Andrew Banks is a freelance artist and illustrator at Andrew Banks Illustration. Andrew works with a variety of media including watercolor, ink, graphite, and markers and specializes in rendering architectural subjects, details and landscapes. Andrew is an active member of the Urban Sketchers Chicago group, and you will rarely find him without his favorite sketchbook and pen.
Instagram: @abillustrator

[Ed. Note: The Prairie School – or Prairie Style – was a late 19th- and early 20th-century architectural style, most common to the Midwestern United States. The style is usually marked by horizontal lines, flat or hipped roofs with broad overhanging eaves, windows grouped in horizontal bands, integration with the landscape, solid construction, craftsmanship, and discipline in the use of ornament. Horizontal lines were thought to evoke and relate to the native prairie landscape.

The Prairie School developed in affinity with the ideals and design doctrines of the Arts and Crafts Movement begun in the late 19th century in England by John Ruskin, William Morris, and others. Likewise, the Prairie School had a profound influence on the aesthetics of artisans in reaction to the design compromises emerging from mass production manufacturing techniques. Source: Wikipedia]

Prarie Style Planter - Andrew Banks

























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