This is my latest sketchbook page. I’m exploring these weird creatures after a conversation with a friend a couple of weeks back now. Although these are pen and wash, I’m keen to get them drawn digitally and coloured. After all, a sketchbook is a place to try things out, make mistakes, crystallise ideas and then go forward.
There’s plenty about these creatures I like and a lot that I don’t like. They are, however, a place to start and build on.
What I do know is that they make me smile and giggle! Which is a good thing for sure!
A rainy, windy, grey morning here in the Valleys of South Wales. The perfect day to cwtch up in the warm and dry and work on some art.
I’ve been drawing robots, or bots, in my sketchbook lately. I blame Bill Making Stuff on YouTube. I stumbled across his channel a lil while ago, and it seems his insidious bots and makes have found a corner in my creative mind to lurk. It’s inevitable, I suppose, that they should creep out.
But my drawing style has exerted its muscle …and these are typical ‘Angela’ style drawings! Actually, I had started to work on some new bots and characters for my Doodleworlds style of cute and whimsical art. But Bill gave me, unknowingly by him, the push to have a go at drawing these creations.
Fun. Whimsical. Cute. Different. Just what I needed to do on a rainy, windy, grey morning.
Saturday is here again. So, over on my little corner of the YouTube universe, I do a flip-through of this week’s arty projects, and a bit of a chat about stuff at the same time.
Here, above, is my sketchbook page for Sketchtember 2021. For day 18, I’ve chosen to draw plants in pots, mostly cups, mugs, teapots and jugs it seems. They’re still plants in pots. They’re all drawn from my memory and/or imagination.
After completing the pen sketches, I added colour using Ecoline Brush Pens and a Water brush. I had to try to mix colours too, particularly varieties of green. I may have done OK with some of them. Others are abject disasters, such as the succulent style plant with red tips to it’s leaves. Ho hum.
Everything is a bit wonky, but perhaps that is no bad thing at all. A lot of my artwork is a tad wonky, and that’s part of my signature style, probably.
I’ve also used a clear Glaze pen, a gold sparkle Signo gel pen and a clear Star Sakura Gelly roll pen to add shiny highlights. A white Sakura Soufflé pen added highlights to some of the areas too.
This, like yesterday’s buttons, has been a fun project. This time, though, I’ve completed adding colour, which has surprised me no end. I suspect that increasing familiarity with Ecoline watercolour inks and how I like to apply them has helped greatly with this.
Trying to work in a more ‘illustrative’ and a bit expressive way of adding colour is helping too. It’s a work in progress, but I may just get there!
Now, all I have to work out is what to do with the rest of Saturday!
I’ve had a few days of periods of intense anxiety/stress. The come down from each of these has left me exhausted and my mind unfocused. I’m much better now that all the appointments related to the anxiety are over, and all is well. I knew it would be, but my mind and emotions have other ideas about that at times!
Anyhoo, as I had a bit of focus yesterday afternoon/evening, I decided to draw a few buttons for Sketchtember Day 17. A few turned into a whole page full of pen drawings! And some really not good hand-lettering, ho hum.
So, I thought I’d spend some chilled out time this morning starting to add colour to some of the buttons.
Ecoline and an insight..
Ecoline Brush Pens were my medium of choice this morning. A lot of the details on the drawings were just a bit too small for marker pens to cope with. Also, I thought a change of medium could be good for me, and it was!
To start with, I scribbled some colour onto a palette and then picked it up with a damp brush and worked with it like watercolour. However, as the areas dried, the intensity of colour faded.
So, I decided to brave trying to directly add colour to the page and then spread it out with a damp brush. It worked! I suddenly realised that I have a much more illustrative way of adding colour, rather than realistic. It’s about time I accepted that and embraced it too!
A page full of different objects, rather than a single illustration, has helped me to realise this, as well as put it into practice.
Now, I just have to remember this insight, which isn’t as easy as you may think!
Perhaps I should write a list of Angela’s Artwork Insights to refer to before I do any work, as well as while I’m working.
Bright and cheerful!
The other thing I really loved was working with these really bright, vibrant colours. I’ve been using a lot of more muted and vintage colours of late, and I love them. But these bright colours were just what I need during a post-anxiety funk.
My vlog today is a flip through of all the art I’ve been doing in the past week, both in sketchbooks and on paper.
The image above shows my bedtime drawing last night. I’m not happy with it, but it is what it is. Finishing the drawing followed by the addition of colour and shadow/highlight may change my mind about it. As may the passage of time and a fresh view of it.
This is but one of quite a few drawings done this week. The rest can be seen in today’s vlog.
Instead of one large image, I created a sheet of eight, slightly smaller than ATC sized drawings.
ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) are 3½” x 2½” in size. The original idea was for artists, crafters, creatives to make small pieces of art and to swap them with other artists as a way to share and collect art. The idea was to swap and not sell, though people do sell them now, but many more do swap and collect work from other artists.
In today’s vlog, I colour and embellish one of the designs. Then, I turn it and another into first ATC cards and then into greeting cards.
This idea came about through a conversation with a group member who asked permission to create ATCs from my coloring templates for the group.
I do not have an Angel Policy for any of my templates in the group to allow them to be sold in any form. However, gifting or swapping them, or items made using them, is fine so long as the artist (me) is credited and the items are not sold.
For the individual coloring books, terms and conditions are mentioned in the books and should always be referred to.
A very small penny dropped yesterday. I realised that what I’m doing is pen and wash, or ink and wash, or line and wash. I’m not entirely sure that a label is required, but it seems to fit.
I’m adding watercolour of one kind or another – Inktense, Ecoline, Mijello Mission Gold, Distress Inks, etc – to a pen drawing. Why I haven’t made that connection to the description of the method/process? I have no idea! Still, I have made that connection and a realisation that it gives a sense of artistic legitimacy to my work. That is a function of my insecurities when it comes to my artistic espression.
Yes, that’s right. Insecurities. Lack of confidence. Lack of belief in myself. Self-questioning about what on Earth I’m doing.
It is always nice for me when pieces of a rather abstract, metaphoric jigsaw fall into place, giving me a more coherent view of my method, my artistic voice.
These pieces always fall into place at the right time for me. I’m ready to accept that line and wash is what I do well, when I work within ‘an elegance of limits’ to quote the team at Zentangle. In this case a limited palette of colours harmonious with the background.
As well as working on this particular drawing, I have included some views of recent work in my sketchbook in today’s vlog. This other work shows me trying to work out how to add more contrast to the wash of colour. Fine ballpoint pen, graphite pencil and tortillon or coloured drawing pencils/chalk pastels are what I’m exploring. Eventually, I will settle on a method that I particularly like. I’m not happy with any of these at the moment.
I will continue to explore an figure it out. That’s what I’ve done with adding colour to my drawings, and that’s what I’ll do when it comes to increasing contrast with shadows and highlights.
Of course, I’m talking here about traditional art. When it comes to digital art, I think I have found a way I’m comfortable with in adding colour to pen drawings. I’m not quite there yet with traditional media, as well as finding the traditional media I like to work with.