This is the first charcoal drawng I did on the course with Suzi Davidoff as my teacher. She is a very inspirational and enthusiastic mentor. We started with an ink and charcoal wash - being careful not to cover too much of the page. Then we went into the garden and did a contour charcoal drawing using a soft charcoal pencil. I focused on an oleander shrub and began contour drawing - 90% looking at the flowers and leaves. and 10% looking at the paper. This contour drawing formed the basis of the drawing - the skeleton. Then we went back and sometimes kept the line from the initial contour drawing and sometimes just left it in the background or sometimes erased it. The drawing was built up and eventually finished using many layers of drawing and charcoals. Here is a detail to explain how the contour information sits in the background.
And the finished work
I love the technique