This is a sketch for my Illustration Friday entry this week. The prompt is "stitch". My illustration shows Betsy Ross sewing the first American flag. My web research suggests there is no evidence to back up the Betsy Ross story; it is a folktale. That is ok. It seems like a harmless fabrication, and I wouldn't want facts to get between me and my Illustration Friday entry. The purpose of this sketch is to get the outlines correct (especially on the flag) and to establish value. I used mechanical pencil on printer paper. I now wish I used good drawing paper. Lesson learned. I intend to transfer the drawing to watercolor paper and paint in watercolors, in a poster style. I'll probably stick to the real colors of the American flag, although the Andy Warhol-wannabe in me is hankering to do the flag is some bold complimentary colors like blue and orange.
I am studying Maxfield Parrish this month, and his work is influencing this piece. Parrish loved patterns on fabric and used them to indicate 3 dimensions, such as the folds of the flag. I tried to render the stars and stripes in such a way as to indicate folds. I will also use some value change to indicate the folds, but this will be minimal.
If anyone has any suggestions on improving the design, I welcome your input.