These are my current works in progress. They’re full of swirly curvy loveliness, along with a smattering of the Zentangle tangle Gourdgeous too, amongst a couple of others.
I’ve drawn the designs on clay-toned paper from Fabriano. It’s a warm grey, just a bit darker than in the scanned image. The soft grey does tone down the Inktense colours a tad, making them feel more vintage or metallic in some way. Although the paper isn’t designed for water, I find I can get away with a barely damp brush to activate and spread the Inktense to create gradients. The white Inktense is opaque enough to add highlights, and even to colour the grey white!
Part of me thinks that monochrome or analogous colours are the way to go. I’m not all that keen on the orangey-rusty colours. Sticking to the greens and blues would feel more coherent perhaps. But as I’m learning more about my art, toned papers, adding colours, then it’s all a process of learning!
And I do love working on the toned papers for sure. There is something fascinating about starting with the a page full of the mid-tone colour and then adding dark and light to it.
I had an idea. It may not be a great idea. It may not be executed in the best way today. But it’s a start, but first, some background as to how this idea came about before I explain myself.
Last week, I went to a local café for a late lunch. So late that it was almost tea time! The first time I’ve been out for lunch by myself since the start of the Covid pandemic. I’ve had lunch out three times with a friend in this time, but I still rarely leave my home for such things.
It was a lovely lunch, broccoli and stilton soup with a large pot of tea. The people working in the cafe were lovely and helpful. The food was delicious and beautifully presented. I was made to feel very welcome there.
So, it took a few days, but yesterday I woke with an idea. Why don’t I do some tiny artworks to leave for people to discover. Little notes to thank those who run a café or restaurant. Little notes of kindness, inspiration, or compassion are on the back for strangers who may need to read them. Little notes to brighten up someone’s day. And maybe put my email address/blog address on there. Maybe. I’ve not decided if that will be a thing, yet.
So, the first step was to see what sizes of little envelopes I could buy. I really wanted glassine ones, so the tile is protected but visible. But the only tiny ones I could find were 6.5cm square (that’s 2.5″). So some have been ordered, and some watercolour card has been cut into pieces 6cm square, ready to use! The tiles in the image are 6cm square in size. So quite tiny!
The others I found are so sweet. They have a heart fastening on the rear flap and are made of kraft paper. Perfect! That way, what’s inside will be a surprise and, hopefully, a pleasant one for those who find it. These are a bit bigger at 10.5cm x 7 cm (approx 4.13″ x 2.75″), which is about the size of a gift card, business card or credit card. So, I cut paper to 10cm x 6.5 cm to fit these envelopes.
For this morning’s video, I decided to use two of the small squares. I started by colouring one side with Distress Inks. Then I drew the designs with various black fineliner pens. Next, I added more colour with Inktense pencils and a water-brush. Finally, highlights were added with white gel pens and a gold gel pen on the Aquafleur design. Not sure the gold pen was a good idea; I might have been better off using a dip pen and gold ink. It’s all a learning process!
Then, it was time to hand-letter a message on the back and decorate. This is where I think things went a tad to pot. In hindsight, I wish I’d coloured the reverse of the tile too, as, the white looks so stark. But they’ll do. My hand-lettering isn’t the best, but again it will do. My biggest problem is not letting the ink dry fully before erasing pencil lines and/or adding Inktense pencils. But they’re not too shabby…possibly.
What I may try doing, as these are test pieces, is using some Microglaze to seal them. Not only will it seal the Distress Ink, but will give a glossy finish that will bring out the colours more. The problem with Micro glaze is that it smears the black pen lines. But as these are test pieces, if that happens, I’ll learn not to do it again in the future, or use different kinds of pens. I wonder how the Dokumentas in the Twisbi’s will react to Micro glaze? That is an experiment I need to try out!
My only problem once I’m happy with this, apart from learning how to take better photographs of my work, is finding the courage to leave these things. The intense embarrassment and shame I know I’ll feel will be great. That will come out of the old fear that no one will like what I do or appreciate it or understand that it comes from a place of unconditional love and gratitude for our connections. And this is the reason why I’m dithering about whether or not to include my email.
I’ll work it out. I usually do, eventually! Until then, I have a small pile of tiles to decorate, Micro glaze and different pens to experiment with, and how to put messages on the back… part of me thinks printing them out and glueing them on could be a way to go. I have actually turned one of my hand-lettering styles into a font! Something else for me to think about.
This week, I’ve designed a mandala full of layers and patterns. I’ve chosen a limited colour palette of soft greens, pinks, reds, oranges and browns; a softer, calmer selection of colours that have that late summer, early autumn feel.
I love drawing mandalas. Seeing the repeating pattern building up is both fascinating and relaxing. Adding colour to bring out the layers and breathe life into the design is a magical process. I’ve not done much with high contrast to bring out the dimension today. Gentleness is the approach needed today both to my art and to myself.
I find it fascinating how my colour choices are often softer, more muted and in limited palettes nowadays. It does make a change from the riotous colours that I so often used not all that long ago, and still do when it comes to the more whimsical and cute colouring books that I create for Creative Haven.
Seeing how others choose to add colour to the colouring page designs I create is also endlessly fascinating and varied.
In today’s video, I started drawing this design inspired by one by Doodlillusion on Instagram. I’d been asked to look at this one by a YouTube subscriber, so today I have.
I definitely used Doodlillusion’s art as inspiration, drawing it in my own way. I trust that I can show and explain how I approached this kind of pattern, along with some hints and tips and various ways of working with it.
I’m quite pleased with the end result. I like the graphic black and white. Something I need to consider more in my monogram and other explorations, maybe!
I’m continuing with my exploration of monograms and patterns. This one is a bit odd with the ba sitting above a pool or pebble..or something. But I quite like the patterns I’ve used to embellish it. I’m also rather fond of the background patterns, especially the very faint ones to the bottom right.
I’m not too fussed about the greens, yellows and the colours I used for the flowers. Pretty much every colour apart from the background colours and the colours of the patterns around the b!
Must write a HUGE reminder and stick it where I can see it “WORK IN MONOCHROME!”
All the same, it’s a learning exercise for me, as drawing always is. The ones that turn out not quite to my liking at the ones I learn most from. Having said that, I still haven’t learned that ‘work in monochrome’ thing yet! One day, maybe, I will.
This morning, I thought I’d share how I’m exploring creating some Entangled art, particularly monograms, via YouTube.
This little drawing is 11cm by 11cm, which is approximately 3.5″ square – took about an hour or so to get to this point. I wasn’t sure of the green, but I think it’ll work out just fine. There’s quite a way to go yet, but that will have to wait for another time.
The materials I used are: * 03 black Sakura Pigma Micron * Various Arteza Everblend marker pens * Various fineliners in grey and green * A white Sakura Gellyroll pen * A metallic gold Uniball Signo pen
This week’s colouring page for the members of Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans Facebook group is intricate. Still, it uses only three motifs – spirally furled leaves, starry flowers and stripey, plumptious seed pods.
I drew the design using a fine nib TWISBI eco fountain pen, filled with Documentus ink, on an A4 sheet of Artway’s Eco paper. To add colour, I used various Arteza Everblend markers. The pattern, textures, and highlights have been added with various Arteza Inkonic, Uniball Signo and Sakura Gellyroll pens.
I started this drawing in the wee small hours of the night when some night sweats woke me up. I’ve continued to work on it throughout the day as other things allowed me to.
I’m actually quite happy with this now it’s done. Along the way, I had some wobbly moments where I almost gave up. But I’m really glad I didn’t.
A friend thought it was rather ‘heraldic’ and expected to see a big letter in it! My next one will have a monogram as part of the design. It has a rather medieval feel and is typically Entangled with some Zentangle inspiration.
The drawing is approx 3.75″ x 7.5″ (10cm x 19cm) in size and was worked with a variety of fine liners, Arteza EverBlend markers and a white Gellyroll pen on All-Media paper by Seawhite of Brighton.
This is the partly coloured colouring page for the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans Facebook group members. It’s a flowy, abstract, entangled, and zentangle-inspired design. Colour, shadow and highlight bring the design to life and add a lot of volume (dimension if you prefer) too.
I chose a more-or-less monochrome colour scheme, with just a splash of violet here and there. I think if I’d carried on adding colour, I would’ve used a more analogous colour scheme.
Wednesday is the week’s halfway point, and the day I start to draw this week’s colouring page for Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans Facebook group members.
I was awake early, the air was cool-ish, and starting to draw this week’s page and film it seemed a very sensible idea before the day warmed up.
Here in the UK, we have amber weather warnings for very high temperatures for the next few days. Not quite as high as a couple of weeks back, but too high for me to be comfortable. So, I aim to get as much done as possible before I have to either nap or retire to cooler parts of the house with sketchbook and pens! And probably fall asleep even then.
Anyways, my thoughts for this week’s colouring page were to create four smaller panels, each of which would make a lovely greetings card or postcard once coloured. I like pages that can be used in other ways, though I don’t create them often enough.