Christmas Dangle Design

©Angela Porter
Design from ‘A Dangle A Day’, authored and illustrated by Angela Porter

It’s Friday so it’s #dangleday. Today, I wanted to share a Christmas Dangle with you from my book ‘A Dangle A Day’. In the book I show how this design was drawn, step by step.

When I created this design, I first drew it in pencil on dot grid paper. The next step for me was to scan it in to the computer and then re-draw it step-by-step, saving each step as I went. For the book, the final step was to colour the design and then write the instructions to go with the images. My tools for this were a Microsoft Surface Book, a Microsoft Surface Pen and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.

I wanted to include as many Christmas-themed charms to create the dangles as I could and still keep the design balanced. I also kept the length of the dangles uneven. The waviness in the ends of the dangles echoes the waviness of the fairy lights above the hand lettered word ‘Christmas’.

What I did this morning was to print the black and white line art design on an A4 sheet of paper. Then I used Chameleon Duo Tones and Color Tops markers to colour it in.

These pens make it easy to create gradations of colour, such as on the hand lettering. These gradations add ‘dimension’ to the charms and dangles. I keep the darker shades to the left and bottom of the designs so that there’s a consistency across the whole image. I also used a pale grey marker to add drop shadows to the left and bottom of the design elements; again this helps to add dimension to the design.

Finally, I added some highlights with a white Sakura Gelly Roll pen. I also added some sparkles around the fairy lights and individual stars with a gold glitter Uniball Signo gel pen. After all, it wouldn’t be Christmas without some sparkle!

Used individually with a monogram or Christmassy image the dangles would make lovely book marks. Printed at A5 in size, the design would make a fabulous BuJo page for the big day itself. It would also make a lovely design for greetings cards or note cards.

Of course, it would be easy to change the word at the top to, perhaps, Winter or Yule and use fewer dangles to suit the length of the word. Personally, I like to use an odd number of dangles wherever possible – it gives a more balanced design.

Abstract Entangled Art 17 November 2018

I’ve worked on this image over the past three days or so. Adding the shading took a surprisingly large amount of time.

I really enjoyed creating this one. I say that about all my art though, but this one was particularly enjoyable as it helped me to calm and relax after the crazyily emotionally exhausting week I’d had.

It reminds me very much of work I used to do before I had so much work to do for colouring books, not that I’m complaining about that, not one bit. I love doing the drawings for them as much, but I can’t work in this kind of detail for them. I can’t put in all the fine line shading and shadow for them, nor the teeny-tiny details in the patterns as they’d be nigh on impossible to colour the gaps individually.

In my past couple of drawings like this, I haven’t added any shadow to them in the way I have in this particular design. The shadow really helps with that sense of ‘dimension’, though I do think I could have added some deeper shadows in some places.

Though it reminds me of the kind of drawings i used to do a lot pre-coloring books, it’s also shows a change in perhaps sophistication of line but also in the variety of patterns and design elements I like to include in my designs. I’ve even left some ares not heavily patterned so they give the eye spaces to rest without being overwhelmed with pattern and design.

Now to the nitty gritty of how I drew this.

After yesterdays discussion about digital vs traditional art I’d like to say I did this digitally, but I didn’t. I used Unipin Uniball and Sakura Pigma Micron pens on an A4 sheet of Bristol Board from Daler-Rowney. Pencil lines were sometimes used, especially for the circles, which I used stencils to draw them in lightly before inking them in free-hand. I’ve noticed I’ve not erased the pencil lines before scanning the artwork in.

To add the shading I used Chameleon Color Tones and Color Tops in shades of cool grey and neutral grey.

Today, I plan to do some more drawing similar to this before my new bullet journal arrives to replace the one I wrecked by spilling mocha over it and my lovely flowery bag. Thankfully, the notes I need to keep from the media training and events this week are still readable so I can transfer them across, as well as edit them in the process.

Nature always wears the colours of the spirit

Angela Porter 5 July 2018

I’ve spent all day working on this, and a pleasurable day it has been.

When it came to choosing a quote to hand letter on the image, this one by Ralph Waldo Emerson seemed perfect to me.

To colour my drawing I used my Chameleon Marker pens. I haven’t used alcohol markers in quite a while. There was a point when I’d coloured a lot of the outline art in and really didn’t like the colours I’d used and nearly gave up on it.

However, I persevered in adding the patterns and highlights and it’s worked out quite nicely I think, even with a not very good photo of the image.

Artwyrd at Etsy

Last night I bit the marker pen and uploaded two sets of small greetings cards to my Etsy shop, Artwyrd.

Each set has ten cards featuring a coloured flower/mandala design stored in a small, custom made box along with matching envelopes.

The flower/mandala designs I drew myself in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro on my Microsoft Surface book.  I printed out multiple copies of the designs and then used my Chameleon Markers and Copic Markers to colour them.  Distress Ink was used to add colour around the designs.

The next step was to create colour mats for the designs; I used my marker pens to colour some Centaura Pearl card.

Before mounting them on the 3″ x 3″ (7.5cm x 7.5cm) card blanks, I embellished the designs with dots of metallic and pearlescent acrylic paint, as well as adding coloured gems.

Of course the cards sparkle!

The boxes are made from cardstock with the lids decorated with designer series paper; the colour ways chosen are complementary to the colours of the cards. I also used Distress Inks to distress the edges and corners of the boxes.   I’ve yet to embellish the boxes.

These are my fifth and sixth attempts at making the boxes.  I had to purchasing a new paper cutter that’s more accurate than the one I had been using.  I had used a template for a box that would take ten 3″ x 3″ cards, but wasn’t big enough for the envelopes.  So, I also had to work out and adjust the measurements needed for the base and lid so that the envelopes would fit in the box!  Frustrating, especially as maths isn’t my strong point …but I got there in the end.

I do have a couple of jobs to do to the cards/boxes; the boxes need some embellishment, and I need to add makers labels to them too.

The boxes will be nice for other things once the cards are used up – the lids are a snug fit.

All of the designs I have stored and may, in the fullness of time, put them together as a pack of digi-stamps so people can use them to create their own cards!

Mixed media cards – shells and fish

AngelaPorter_Cards1_10June2017AngelaPorter_Cards2_10June2017AngelaPorter_Cards3_10June2017AngelaPorter_Cards4_10June2017

Over the past few days I’ve been drawing shells, flowers, fish and fungi and sorting them out to be digi-stamps, work all done on my Microsoft Surface Book.  Some have been printed, coloured using my Chameleon Color Tones and Color Tops pens, cut out and mounted on mixed media backgrounds.  The photos above show the fruits of my labours.

Apart from the Chameleon markers, the media I have used are:

  • Distress and Distress Oxide inks
  • Iridescent and metallic paints from Liquitex and Pebeo.
  • Perfect pearls sprays
  • Stencils
  • Stamps
  • Black Archival Ink
  • Inktense pencils
  • 3D Crystal Lacquer
  • Alchemy Wax

I think that’s the complete list of media.  I used mixed media paper for the backgrounds, and the paper was cut out using rectangular dies.  Behind the backgrounds, I used silver mirriboard as a mat.

I’m quite pleased with them.  No so sure about the kraft card bases (which are 5¾” x 4″ in size), but they were what I had.

Now, all I have to do is work out a price for them and pop them into my Etsy shop, though I think I will have to take better photos for that!

Shell Drawings and Chameleon Pens

AngelaPorter_6June_2017_ColouredShells

Between counselling and errands today, I’ve managed to create over 30 shell ‘digi stamps’ or individual images I can re-size and print out as needed by me, though I am considering putting them together as sets of digi-stamps, though I do need to add line detail to quite a few; that’s a job for another day.

I printed out a few of them on A4 paper, and used my Chameleon Pens to colour them in, and here’s the result – very brightly coloured.

My only problem is to work out what to do with them!  Do I use them in some mixed media index cards or bigger work?  Do I use them to make greetings cards?  Is there something else I could do with them?

At the moment I don’t quite know, but I’ll work it.  First I need to cut them all out.  Hopefully, my scissor skills will improve …

Oh, I drew the shells on my Microsoft Surface book in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.

Mixed media index cards – 3 June 2016

AngelaPorter_3June2017_MixedMediaIndexCard1

Two more index card done!

I drew the fungi then coloured them with the Chameleon Color Tones and Color Tops pens.  Cogs have appeared in the background once again – gotta have a lil bit of steampunkishness!

I’ve used 3D Crystal Lacquer on the fungi caps and on the stars in the background.

I’m liking the slightly bigger format of the index cards compared to ATCs.