Small ‘aha’ designs

Lots of little drawings.

Over the past couple of days I’ve been drawing small designs in pen, including plenty of line detail to add volume and shadow.

Today, I scanned the drawings in and printed them out (after cleaning them up a tad digitally) so I could try colouring them.

I wanted to print them on mixed media paper, which I know my printer will take. However, even with clean scans, the prints were really messy. However, when printed on ordinary paper, the prints were pristine.

I wasn’t happy as I wanted to use a paper with a bit more ‘tooth’ so I could make use of the Derwent Colorsoft pencils. But, I persevered and the results are above.

The first I coloured is in the top middle. My colour sense isn’t always wonderful. Lots of colours, but it just doesn’t feel coherent in any kind of way.

So, I moved on to the next design. This time, I thought I’d use analogous colours (colours next to each other on the colour wheel), with a touch of a complementary colour to add brightness. Complementary colours are opposite each other on the colour wheel.

I like this second one much more. It feels cohesive, like everything belongs together. And the little bursts of yellow/orange just lift it all.

The third design I’ve been colouring is only partly done. I’ve veered away from entirely analogous colours, but I am trying to keep the colour palette simple and with, perhaps, an autumnal feel to it.

As I was working on printer paper, I needed to use some way to blend the colours. I remembered I had some ‘Zest-It’ blending solution and some paper torchons. They worked well. The big frustration was that I couldn’t lay down intense colour. However, as these are prints, I’m not too worried. I do need to find some toothy paper which will go in the main paper drawer of my printer. I do have some cartridge paper here somewhere which should go through it.

Of course, scanning the drawings in means I can also work on adding colour digitally. It means I can try things out until I’m happy with the results.

Pesky printers

I never have much luck with printers. Inkjet printers die on my quickly, even the more expensive professional ones. I thought I’d try a laser printer, but I seem to have problems with this one now not giving clean prints when I use the sheet feeder for specialist papers.

I don’t print much out, to be honest, but it’s frustrating when I want to print artwork out on specialist paper.

A note to self about colour.

What I have learned is that I like to watercolour the designs, but then the addition of coloured pencils to intensify the colours and add shadows works really well for me. I like the intense contrasts that I can get with coloured pencils that I just can’t seem to achieve with watercolours.

Of course, I can always colour digitally, which lets me play with colours, change them, until I get something I really like.

Today, I’ve had a reminder that limited palettes, particularly of analogous colours, seem to be working rather well for me, especially with those accents of complementary colours.

I really do need to put a big ‘note to self’ where I can see it to remind me of this. I can get carried away with colours

Template Thursday

As it’s Thursday once again, it’s Template Thursday! That means I create a colouring template for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

This week, I have an entangled mandala design, with a zentangle-style background. It always seems a shame to waste the space around a mandala when it’s a page for breathing life into a design with colour.

I drew this design in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro using a brush that changed width with pressure. That allowed me to add some dimension to the lineart. But it is colour and shading that really brings a sense of volume to the design.

Template Thursday

Another week of the Coronavirus Pandemic has passed us by, so it’s time for another colouring template/page for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

This week it’s a mandala. A more traditional kind of mandala at that.

Mandala’s are incredibly calming and soothing to draw and to colour.

Template Thursday

It’s Thursday, so that means it’s time for a new coloring template for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

One of the members suggested a Christmas in July template, so that’s what I did. A page full of iconic Christmas motifs, admittedly not all of them, but a fair selection.

If you fancy printing this template off, all you need to do is join the group! It’s completely free, as are all the templates I design for the group. All I ask is that you follow the terms and condtions of use.

I drew these little designs on Rhodia dot grid paper with a Tombow Fudenosuke (hard) pen. I cleaned the drawing up in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro, then digitally added colour. Some are in the more traditional Christmas colours, others are less so. No rules for colouring! Whatever makes you happy or peaceful is fine! The most important thing is to have fun and enjoy what you do.

As for me, today I’m taking a break from the typographic portrait of Nye Bevan that I shared yesterday. My artistic intuition needs some time to work out what to do with it, both to complete the blank areas and to edit places that aren’t working.

I need to pop out for a walk too. I’ve been sat down, focused on art too much over the past couple of days. It’s overcast and there’s a stiff breeze, so it’s perfect for me!

Template Thursday

It’s #TemplateThursday when I create and post a colouring template to the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group. The template is free to members, though there are a few terms and conditions associated with it’s use. It’s also free to join the group!

This week, I decided to draw some cute and whimsical bugs, each having their very own portrait. Lots of small, individual pictures that a perfect for quick, mindful colouring.

I know I often get overwhelmed by a huge artwork I’m working on and that is most likely to happen when I’m experiencing a lot of anxiety, and I seem to have waves of anxiety the like I haven’t seen for a long time, most related to the pandemic.

When I need to take time out, to do art that will soothe me, calm me, let me relax and find that mindful, content space within myself, I turn to creating small artworks.

I drew this template with a Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pen on ClaireFontaine dot grid paper. Colouring has been done digitally in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.

Coloring Page / Template

Colouring page / template

It’s Thursday. The pandemic is still in action. That means it’s time for a new coloring page or template for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

It’s free to join the group, and the template is a freebie for members of the group.

This week, I created a mandala design with a background of geometric, repeating patterns.

I’m still recovering from the stress of my first trip out since March 2020. Drawing (and colouring) mandalas is an incredibly peaceful, relaxing and mindful activity. So, it was natural that I drew one.

The mandala design is based on some of the abstract art I’ve been doing of late. It’s a bit unusual for my mandalas, but I really do like the organic flow of the lines.

Even though the design is abstract, the repeating symmetry of a mandala bring some structure to the design. I am looking forward to seeing how members of the group add colour to the design.

The geometric patterns in the background also result in a soothing, repetitive rhythm for colouring; a rhythm that results in soothing and calming ones mind and emotions.

De-stressing

I have been totally shaken by the level of anxiety/stress that resulted from my trip out on Tuesday. I am beginning to feel more my contented and calm self. However, I find I’m still irritable and grumpy and have withdrawn from social media and the like for most of the day.

It was a sobering thought when I realised I’d lived most of my life constantly at elevated stress levels, often as higher than what I experienced in the past couple of days.

It’s also a wonderful realisation that I can recognise this now, and I also am able to allow myself self-care time to let all the stress hormones leach from my body. It’s been a long time since they peaked in this way.

It makes me extremely grateful to my therapist for her years of patient work with me. Experiences like the Tuesday Trip remind me of how I used to be and show me how far I have come in recovery from cPTSD.

Yesterday, after my social media post, I binged watched the Harry Potter films from The Order of the Phoenix. I found I was irritated by crochet. I tried cross-stitch, which irritated me too. Eventually, I settled on knitting, which, oddly, soothed me. I think it’s because I could knit and watch the film. Knitting allowed me to channel my irritability into something creative. As I can knit without looking at the knitting, I could also watch and immerse myself in the films at the same time.

My fingers are itching to knit again, now I’ve thought about it.

Even though I slept well last night, I’m still feeling really tired today. This happens as part of the post-stress come-down. It can last a few days. I’ll not be rushing to nap, however. Napping has a knock-on effect on my ability to sleep at night when I’m like this. My naps tend to end up as periods of deep sleep, so I try not to take them unless it’s absolutely necessary.

Template Thursday

©Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

Another week in lock-down has passed us by here in the UK, as well as many places around the world. That means it’s time for another weekly coloring template.

This week, the inspiration for this template has come from the pages full of capsules, pods and seeds in my sketchbook. Lots of opportunity to experiment with colour, but also adding little details to each tiny picture.

If you’d like to download and print this template, then pop along to the facebookgroup – Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans – and you can do so for free (terms and conditions for use do apply).

Drawn using Sakura Pigma micron pens (05 and 01) on ClaireFontaine dot grid paper.
Clean up of drawing, colouring and typography done digitally using Autodesk Sketchbook Pro along with a Microsoft Surface Studio and Microsoft Surface Slim Pen.

Template Thursday

©Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

The weeks are flying by! It seems like hardly any time at all since I posted last week’s coloring template. I decided at the start of the Covid-19 quarrantine that I’d design a weekly coloring template for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group. And so far I’ve managed to do that.

And here, partly coloured, is this week’s offering. I look forward, as always to seeing the coloured templates by members of the group. I love the way that they use different colours and interpret the design differently!

The template is only available in the facebook group, and is for free. I know how much colouring and creativity can help people manage their emotional and mental health. Creating art and being creative certainly helps me, especially if I have a good audiobook on or uplifting music!

I created this design digitally in Autodesk Sketchbook using a Microsoft Surface Slim Pen and Microsoft Surface Studio.

Coloring Template – 7 May ’20

Coloring Template © Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

Yet another week has gone by in lock-down, so it’s time for another coloring template for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

Flowers always cheer me up, and I thought they’d make a nice motif in the design. I kept to the same kind of flowers. In fact, although this drawing is still quite detailed and complex, there’s far fewer motifs and patterns in it than I’d usually use.

I also like to partly colour the template – it helps to bring it partly to life to show on social media. Today, I’ve chosen a fairly pastel color palette. I think that reflects how I’m feeling today.

I drew the design on quadrille (squared) paper with a 06 Sakura Pigma Sensei pen. This is an unusual choice for me; the nib is broad and a bit more flexible than I’d usually use. The result is a bold design with bold lines.

I scanned the design in and used some digital wizardry to remove the quadrille grid. I also corrected an error and removed some smudges. All this was done in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro, which I continued to use to colour the design in.

So, Angela, how are you doing?

I’m so tired today. I couldn’t sleep past 4:30 am, and after a long while waiting to go to sleep I got up an started doing some arty stuff.

As well as feeling tired, my digestive system is uncomfortable still and I’m feeling a bit icky-sicky too. No headache today, thank goodness.

I am feeling a bit fed up today – fed up of feeling under the weather and tired. Hopefully I’ll have a nap later on today, and that may help my mood a little.

Until then, I’m going to do some arty stuff, most probably in my art journal, or maybe some work for the Mattias Adolphsson Domestika course, “The Art of Sketching: Transform your doodles into art.”

I thought I’d try it out to kick start my imagination and perhaps discover new ways of working, stretching myself somewhat. So far, I’m enjoying it. I work at my own pace.

Template Thursday

Template Thursday – 23 April 2020 ©Angela Porter | Artwyrd.com

Another week in lock-down has gone by. Thursday has arrived again and that means a new coloring template for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

Floral designs, an entangled garden was my fancy this morning and this is the result, not fully coloured though.

Coloring is a great way to find some calm and peace during troubled times, such as the times we find ourselves in. Scientific studies have shown it has a similar effect on the brain as meditation.

I have a number of templates available for free in the facebook group, including this one.