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.
In this video, I take a small panel of some paper coloured with Paper Artsy Fresco Paints and white gesso and create a small design. Seed pods, Mooka, and a spiral shell – some of my favourite things to draw!
I used Inktense pencils and a damp brush to add colour and shadow. Finally some gold dots for the seeds in the pods.
Small, but nice enough and a needed change while my mind processes what I’m doing with collage and lettering and, and, and …
I had a really, really cruddy, broken night’s sleep. So, doing art that doesn’t have a bit more than good enough was in order.
Getting the pen drawing done for this cute bird I started a couple of days back was just the thing!
It’s always interesting to look at my art, whether finished or, like this one, a work in progress after a day or so’s break from it. With fresh eyes there’s a different perspective. With this drawing, I needed to alter the design and size to get it to work. Not sure I’ve got it right, but it’s better than it would’ve been if I’d carried on as I originally planned.
The next decision to make, and the trickiest, is whether to just add shadow and highlight or whether to go with colour. The next tricky decision is what media to use to this.
I’m so aware that my colour choices can be … quite dire. And so I am tempted to add colour digitally initially. Maybe. Perhaps.
A little break from it will be in order before I make that decision.
I’ve been busy inking in colouring pages (or templates if you prefer) for my next book – “Fanciful Birds” in the Creative Haven series. But at lunchtime, I took a break to do some drawing. And I drew another bird!
Actually, I started to plan out and draw an A5-ish-sized pen drawing that includes a bird, flowers and so on, all done in a whimsical, fanciful style.
In the video, I explain my thinking process as I lay out the basic design in pencil. And I do it all one step at a time, including the inking in the section I’ve already done.
Of course, the drawing isn’t finished… yet. This is but part 1 of a series. And given I have to focus on the inking in of templates, my videos may be more sporadic than usual, as will my social media posts. So please bear with me!
I seriously need some more tea and probably something to eat; it’s just about tea-time here as I type!
This morning, I woke thinking that I really do need to pop all my favourite texture and filler patterns somewhere so I can refer to them easily. So, a sampler page it is! And yes, I videoed it and you can see the video on YouTube by clicking on this link!
I’m actually looking at the artwork I’ve done in the past few days or so that has been inspired by the work of Rebecca Blair. I’m really enjoying these kinds of simple, straightforward and rather graphic patterns. As they’re new to me and I keep coming up with my own variations, my fear of forgetting things kicks in.
Athazagoraphobia is the psychological term for the irrational fear of being forgotten or ignored, or just of forgetting things. Forgetting things like patterns or textures I like. That’s why I have a number of A5 journals with collections of drawings and patterns and so on in them – my visual references. This partly comes from a desire to collect such things and have a reference at hand to get inspiration from. But it also comes as I do worry about forgetting things as well, especially when I’m exploring or learning something new.
And it’s a totally irrational fear! My memory is usually really good, but I worry about forgetting things as well. Maybe it’s a result of seeing the devastating effect of Alzheimer’s on my father. I can’t remember if I was this way before that. Actually, I was. For a long period of time I kept a journal to keep my thoughts and memories in. Oddly, I don’t really do that now. I have a large collection of journals here and my only desire is to destroy them as I don’t look through them and I really don’t want anyone else to be able to look through them either. They are way too personal for that!
Anyways, I’m making a page full of my favourite patterns from my recent artistic endeavours, just in case! If nothing else, it will be something to spark creativity at a time when I’m a tad stumped for it. It’s also a fun thing to do and a lovely way to review my recent drawings.
I’m most probably not the first to discover this, but it is entirely new to me!
Early this morning, I added some alcohol markers to a pen drawing I’d finished. I’d drawn over a Distress Ink background with some old book pages collaged and gessoed onto it.
I know gesso coats a surface with a waterproof and slightly textured finish. I do know this. But that didn’t occur to me as I added alcohol markers to the drawing.
I was absolutely delighted with the interesting variations in the intensity of colour that resulted. Also, the application of alcohol marker also brought out the texture where the gesso was patchy, even a little bit. The paper soaked up so much more colour than the gesso – duh go me for not realising that first, but that’s not the important thing – it’s the effects that result!
It’s not all that easy to see on the image to the left. But, behind the triangular pattern, I used just one soft blue marker, but you can see the variation in intensity! Usually, it would be a very flat kind of colour. The darker areas are where there is no gesso.
This is something I really want to use as I go forward. I love the crazy, random variations in colour and texture that happen. It seems to me a way to bring a little unpredictability to the rather predictable results you get with marker pens.
Today I’ve added the tangle pattern Kos, deconstructed by Anica Gabrovec CZT, known as Zen Linea. This panel is to the top and centre-right. The other panel is towards the bottom left and is one inspired by Rebecca Blair.
It’s funny how the internet seems to conspire to remind me of my early artwork nearly 20 years ago. One of my drawings turned up on Pinterest today. And it was this kind of sampler, but with patterns from Romanesque architecture, nature and textures drawn in pen and white ink on a kraft paper background. Seems I was doing this kind of thing before I’d heard of Zentangle or Rebecca Blair or many other artists and CZTs!
I keep trying to settle on a clear artistic voice, if not chorus, and it may always have been there, but I just don’t seem to accept it for some reason.
Perhaps these kinds of synchronicities are nudging me to accept this is something that I like to do and need to work more with. Time will tell, that’s for sure.
I think I’ve accepted, mostly, that I need to put watercolours and similar media to one side and focus on alcohol markers. I like the control I have over them. And using digital art to add colour, shadow and highlight too.
As much as I like the fluid, random effects you can get with water-soluble media, my ability to work with these media seems to be limited. Still, no doubt I’ll keep returning to them in the hope I’ll have a different outcome at some point in time. I’m not going to hold my breath on that, though!
I also think that I’m zeroing in on the best way for me to work with colour – monochrome or analogous colour schemes, maybe with a pop of complementary colour here and there.
This was a lovely way to start my day. At the bottom is a tangle pattern that is new to me – Zhuer by Yuru Chen.
I also wanted to add a motif across a couple of boxes in the sample. This one ended up like a stylised ear of wheat. As I look at it now, I wish I’d had it going behind the boxes and maybe the top bending towards the left and reaching outside of the upper box. That’s something to think about for the next motif I add.
Still, it was a nice half hour or so before my attention turned to inking in colouring templates.