Last night, I began the preparatory work for my next dog commission. This included creating a mock image using Photoshop, printing out a life size b/w copy and selecting the paper (in this case, I chose Fabriano Artistico paper). Since my subject is mainly white, I decided to start with the darker background and then apply a workable fixative to prevent smudging on the white areas. Before spraying, I masked the dog using the paper cutout from my b/w copy to avoid getting the fixative on the virgin areas. Through experience, I have found that fixative will change the attribute of the paper, hence affecting the appearance of additional layers of graphite.
The paper cutout was also useful for masking when I worked the background.