Watercolour Experiments

Firstly, let me apologise for the poor photo. I’ve tried a couple of times to take a photo of the artwork, but I just can’t seem to get it in focus across the paper. I did video all but one of these experiments, and a timelapse video is available on my YouTube channel.

I had a delivery yesterday of Canson Imagine mixed media paper. I mistakenly ordered A4 instead of A4, but no problem, it can be used in my disc bound sketchbook.

I wanted to see how various media would work on the paper so, I used
*Derwent Inktense Pencils
*Mijello Mission Gold Class watercolours
*Kuretake Zig Clean Colour brush pens
*Tombow Dual Brush Pens

In each case I used a barely damp brush; I’d already found out that using rather wet colours left edges of colour rather than the smooth colour I like.

I didn’t draw the designs with pen, just an 0.3mm, 2H mechanical pencil.

The inktense are Ok. The colours spread a little patchily as the pigment/ink grabs onto the paper very strongly quite quickly. As they dry permanent, it’s easy to add a glaze of colour to adjust the patchiness. The colours aren’t as bright as I would’ve expected from Inktense. Maybe the off-white colour affected them, or maybe the pigments/dyes sank into the paper more as they dried.

A dry brush technique is needed for the Mijello paints, and they move too easily on the paper with water. The paper doesn’t really grab them, which is surprising as it’s not watercolour paper. I didn’t really enjoy working with them on this paper. Also, the colours are so dull… the colour of the paper, or perhaps the colours sink into it?

I loved using the Zig Clean Colour pens! The ink moved so easily with the barely damp brush. Getting a gradient was so easy. Also, adding a bit more colour to the still damp area helped with this too. I also tried blending one colour into another, and that worked really well. The colours are so vibrant, I loved working with them. My only regret is I forgot to press record for them! However, I’m sure you’ll see more of them in future videos.

The Tombows aren’t my favourite pens to work with. But, in this instance I really did enjoy working with them. The colour grabbed onto the paper more than the Zigs. This made both blending out to a gradient and blending colours more difficult. The colours though are really vibrant.

I did write notes next to each little experiment with a 0.3 Unipin pen. It was a pleasure to write on this paper, and I think I’ll enjoy drawing on the paper too, so it will definitely be a good addition to the disc bound sketchbook.

Sketchbook Musings

Over the past week or so I’ve been gradually adding to this sketchbook page. It is entirely what a sketchbook should be, in my opinion. Pages full of ideas, sketches, unfinished drawings, practice of techniques, written notes… a visual zibladone for the creative soul!

It is a reflection of what is catching my attention in my world. That world encompasses the inner worlds of imagination and emotion, as well as the outer world of books, nature, architecture, photographs, and so on.

This page includes inspiration from Mayan glyphs/sculpture, rocks, nature, mushrooms, magic wands/staves/sceptres, pen textures and some inspiration from Hundertwasser.

Everything on the page is a bit wonky (not perpendicular), and I’m OK about that – it’s a sketchbook! But then wonky art, particularly colouring pages, seems to be part of my signature style. Perfectly straight lines just don’t look right to me, nor do sharp corners. Perhaps that’s why I like Hundertwasser so much.

The English gardener William Kent said, “Nature abhors a straight line”. Hundertwasser said, ” The straight line is godless and immoral.”

A sketchbook is always a work in progress (WIP), even when every page is full, it’s full of incomplete drawings and ideas, sketches and notes, jottings and doodlings. Nothing has to be perfect. Not a single thing.

A sketchbook is a place to try things out, experiment, just see what happens. With that comes an acceptance that not everything will work out, and where surprising things happen and discoveries are made that may otherwise never happen.

Sometimes the gems of ideas and colour combinations and ways of using media remain hidden until much later. A sketchbook is a place to practice and learn, to note down what is of interest at this time, what needs to be expressed, without any pressure to produce a finished, polished artwork.

That doesn’t mean, however, that a sketchbook can’t be something interesting to look at, even with it’s own kind of beauty. They are a reflection of the artist that creates them and so is a window into their arty heart and feelings. They are very personal things.

A sketchbook encourages me to use media that are gathering dust because I do so much art digitally. In a physical sketchbook, if I want any colour, then I have to use some of these media.

On this one page I’ve used Pilot Hi-Tec C4, Pilot Maica, Rotring Rapidograph and Uniball Unipin pens. To add colour, watercolours, Tombow Dual Brush pens, Derwent ColorSoft pencils, Derwent Procolour pencils, Derwent Inktense pencils have been used.

Supply Saturday

Angela Porter 5 May 2018 watermarkedThis little pattern was created using Inktense pencils from Derwent, and a Pitt Artist Pen from Faber-Castell. Oh, I also used a Kuretake Zig water-brush to blend out the Inktense pigment.

I started by using washi tape to mark out a rectangle to work in.  The washi tape did remove some of the paper to the left hand side, but as this is more of a sketchbook experiment, I’m not too bothered.

Next, I drew in the pattern of arches using a deep rose Inktense pencil and used a just damp water-brush to activate and move the Inktense colour.

Once I had the pattern of loops, and loops within loops, I added more colours to the pattern.

The colours will lie over others as a glaze, but once the wet Inktense pigments have dried, they are permanent. That makes them an excellent medium to create such a colourful pattern.

Finally, as this is an experiment, I used the Pitt Artist Pen to add black lines and details to part of the design to see what difference this makes.

I like the loops of pure colour, but there is something about black outlines and patterns that makes me feel something is finished, complete, defined. I do like how the loops without black outlines seem to recede into the background.

I may add some gold and white details to this design as well later on today, as well as resisting the temptation to add black line details to all of the loops. It would be a nice way to keep the #weekendvibes going!

It’s also supply saturday over on the facebook group called Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans.  There’s a lovely group of people over there and they will make you most welcome if you visit and join!

 

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!

A colourful bunch

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This is just finished, though the 3D Crystal Lacquer on the flower centres hasn’t dried yet, so they’re a tad on the cloudy side.

I’m really pleased with this.  Not least of which for bravely, possibly even crazily, using some of my entangled, abstract art to make the flowers!

So, how did I do this?

Firstly, I made the background.  I used a piece of cream paper that has a texture on it that is designed for use with pastels, charcoal and coloured pencils, and I added colour using Distress Oxide inks.  I then sprayed it with a solution of gold Perfect Pearls which gave water spots and gold shimmers to the background.

Next, I’d had this crazy idea to use some of my art to create the flowers.  I chose some art that had colours that would stand out against the background and each other and I used circle punches to cut out circles of varying sizes.  I used a mini ink blending tool and sponge to add jet black Archival Ink to the edges of the circles to distress them as well as to give them a definite edge against each other.

The circles were stuck together in groups of three and then stuck onto the background in a pleasing arrangement, as if they were flowers in a bunch.

Next, came the outlining with a black Sharpie, as well as adding patterns to the circles to create petals and so on.  The white was added using a Sakura Glaze pen.  I also added gold patterns and highlights using a UniBall Signo pen.

The next step was to draw the stems and leaves, which was done with the Sharpie pen.  I used a waterbrush with paint from some of Derwent’s line painter pens.

Next, I intensified and added shadows under and around the flowers, stems and leaves using Inktense pencils and a waterbrush.

This was followed by the creation of the border using a black Posca pen.

Finally, the mixed media panel was adhered to a black background and the gold pen was used to add lines around the panel.  Oh, and then I decided to add 3D Crystal Lacquer to the flower centres.  An accidental drop of the lacquer on the background led to me adding more drops.

I’ve really surprised myself with this project.  I really enjoyed it, and even though I was wondering what on Earth I was thinking in ‘destroying’ some artwork I liked, I came to realise it was repurposing the artwork to create something new, different and allowing me to explore the world of mixed media more, particularly how it relates to myself.

 

Drawing with colour…

I’ve been taking a little break today from the doodle art I’ve been doing lately, and the above is the result of a couple of pleasant hours this evening.

The image on the left has been drawn with Caran D’Ache Supracolour Soft watercolour pencils and a brush and water has been used to blend the colours.

On the right, I’ve used Derwent’s Inktense pencils, again with water and a brush to blend out the colours.

In each case, no sketch was made before drawing; I used the colours to create the patterns as I went.  So, I’ve been ‘doodling’, but in a different way to usual!