This card took me back to my childhood straight away, to my favourite little shop (which does not exist any more). That was where I first bought charcoal pencils - charcoal covered in nice clean wood to keep your fingers cleaner. In those days, I only remember just the plain black to use for shading. Now I have a nice little set from Derwent of tinted charcoal pencils. Same thing but with added tints to vary things.
When I was lucky enough to be taken on to the Design Team for Craft A Scene, I decided that I needed to really come out of my comfort zone and stretch my brain. So I have tried to use different styles and different media for each project. I have never been comfortable with charcoal, so it was always going to be a steep learning curve. In fact, as a result of this card, I treated myself to a book on the subject, step by step.
I used watercolour card for this one, and stamped the images of the church, tree and clouds with Adirondack Pitch Black. and pulled some of the ink out with a water brush to soften the hard lines.. Then I started on the sky with the dark blue, with some highlights with a slightly paler blue. Dark green took care of the tree by the church and some of the foliage around the church, while the dark brown shaded the tree in the foreground. Although the pencils do make it a less messy medium, I still ended up with a mucky finger after smoothing across to break up the harder shading lines.
I used several different colours on the ground, two different shades of green, brown and sandstone, trying to give the impression of grass blowing in the wind.
I only decided to put in lightning towards the end (see, I don't really plan - things develop). Having just got hold of a battery eraser from Derwent, I thought this was the time to bring it into use. It took a bit of time and care to sharpen the point of the eraser to give as narrow and line as possible. A bit more practice would give a much better result, I am sure.
The main aim of this card was to produce a sky I saw once up at Haworth outside the Bronte Parsonage Museum there, what I would call a real "Wuthering Heights" sky, which made me understand why the Brontes wrote in the way they did, especially Emily. I think it does have some of that feel, although I did not put in any of the tombstones you can see at Haworth. More practice needed, though.