Detail and tone.
This exercise was difficult for me. I was not sure about my choice of subject. In observing natural objects and sketching things such as burrs, seeds and leaves with texture, in my sketch book, I became stuck with the idea of trying to capture downy and prickly surfaces. I selected a large blown out artichoke head which I found last summer and had kept since.
I am not very pleased with the drawing, either from a compositional standpoint or as a tonal study. It was difficult to make marks which give a sense of the tactile nature of the plant. I introduced some other objects (against the brief) in an attempt to add some depth, but this was not successful. There is a tentative feel to the drawing which took me several hours.
I then attempted a simpler object, a shell, but again I am not happy. I was nervous about filling the whole of an A3 page, and my drawing is rather marooned in the space and lacks any character. I was not particularly fond of the subject and was feeling dejected following my previous effort and I think this lack of enthusiasm shows in the drawing.
I have seen a number of very detailed drawings which brilliantly demonstrate the use of pencil to produce tonal effects. Below are two very different examples.