This is a Conte Crayon drawing I did for an assignment in Drawing 2 class last semester. I felt the piece came out really well, with the chiaroscuro contrasting darks and lights. Conte Crayons are pretty awesome to work with as far as drawing mediums go. They can be messy, with a lot of dust accumulation underneath the canvas.
The assignment was to draw a self portrait using a medium of our choice. I felt Conte Crayon would make for decent portrait work and in the end I’m glad I went with it.
For paper, I used brown Canson Mi-Teintes drawing paper which I picked up at Jerry’s Artarama. The piece took roughly 8-10 hours to complete. I had a lot of fun working on this, particularly getting the reflection of the camera in the sunglasses!
If you’re interested, you can find the reference photo on this site’s About Page.
Conte Crayons are basically hard pastels that are made with charcoal. The sticks are about a quarter-inch square wide, and 3 inches long. Being charcoal based they can get all over the place, so set up some newspapers or covering before working with them.
The set I used for this portrat was Conte’s Portrait set of 12:
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