I need soothing, calming art today. One day I may share why I’m so topsy-turvy emotionally and mentally. But not now.
For now, I’m being creative in a way that soothes my inner maelstrom. It’s a mini maelstrom, but still enough to provoke unease, fear, and unsettling emotions. Still, these things pass in time. And I have a lot to experience and learn connected to this unease and fear. I just don’t know the timescale and that kind of makes it worse!
But art is always my solace, though I need to find others too. There’s my illustrated journal – writing and, erm, art! It’s been a long while since I played my flute. Nearly a week since I went out for a walk. I still have an electric folk harp I’ve not learned how to play! And there’s plenty of tea to drink.
Tea! Twice, thrice and twice-twice blessed! Tea is always soothing, especially at that magic temperature where it just feels like every part of you relaxes, and a sigh of relief and pleasure is released!
So, once I’ve finished all my social media stuff, I’ll get another mug of tea and get a YouTube video done. Yes, more art. But I love drawing!
Another daily creepy cute critter. Well, almost daily. I’ll explain more in a moment, first to this lovely bunch of pals, or not lovely, depending on your interpretation.
I’m not sure what the possible story is or what stories are here. But that’s part of the fun. I suspect we’ll each see what makes sense to us, given where we are at any particular moment. I feel the tall one is having an aww shucks moment, especially as the ears are blushing (not the cheeks!). Is it a celebration? Or surprised someone would think of them, and the little one is rolling their eyes… again! Is tall always blue in colour, or is it a sign of their low mood and the others have thought to cheer them up?
But, of course, that is just one interpretation. It’s fun to muse about what’s going on for sure.
I’ve been missing from blog posts, social media and YouTube for a few days thanks to some computer problems. But all seems to be fine now, and I have a shiny new laptop that will function as a backup for digital art should my main computer have problems again. I have no idea what went wrong, but I went into full flap and panic mode. Or, an enormous flap and panic mode as I was already overwhelmed with a second deadline looming at the end of this week. The only problem with the new one is the pen on the screen is not as good as my main puter. So, I see a drawing tablet in the future, just in case…
I still have a lot of anxiety left over from this flap and panic, which is tiring me out. But that will fade. Tea will definitely help this morning! As will some art just for art’s sake too.
This week, it’s a flowy, swirly, abstract mandala. There is a lot of potential for playing with contrast to bring out depth, dimension, volume, layers … There’s no right or wrong way to add colour, the only essential is to enjoy! Oh, and find calm and relaxation as you do so too.
I used a limited colour palette for mine. Though I’d started off thinking I wanted to keep the colours pretty much flat, like in Arts and Crafts or Art Nouveau, but it didn’t end up that way. The colours are, however, inspired by some work in these movements, just given a slightly more modern and ‘Angela’ feel to them.
Today is the last day of astronomical summer; tomorrow is the autumnal equinox, the first day of astronomical autumn. Autumn is my favourite time of year. I love the warm, balmy days and the cooler, snuggly evenings cwtched up under a warm blankie. The changing colours are glorious – nature in her fiery finery!
I’m hoping that the glories of autumn will entice me out from home a bit more often, camera in hand. I can hope. I’m still finding it hard to go out and about. But little by little, I am getting out a bit more, from time to time.
Anyhoo, today’s colouring page is an autumn-themed mandala. Now I know that for those south of the equator, spring is incoming for them, but Hallowe’en and Thanksgiving and other celebrations take place according to the calendar rather than the seasons. So though I’ve coloured this template in rich autumn tones, it could be coloured in any way you wish.
I love to draw mandalas, and this one was no exception, especially the cute, whimsical mushrooms and pumpkins! And not forgetting the acorns and oak leaves too. I even managed to sneak a few hearts in there. And of course, stars and moons, berries and botanicals are always most welcome!
This week, I’ve designed a mandala full of layers and patterns. I’ve chosen a limited colour palette of soft greens, pinks, reds, oranges and browns; a softer, calmer selection of colours that have that late summer, early autumn feel.
I love drawing mandalas. Seeing the repeating pattern building up is both fascinating and relaxing. Adding colour to bring out the layers and breathe life into the design is a magical process. I’ve not done much with high contrast to bring out the dimension today. Gentleness is the approach needed today both to my art and to myself.
I find it fascinating how my colour choices are often softer, more muted and in limited palettes nowadays. It does make a change from the riotous colours that I so often used not all that long ago, and still do when it comes to the more whimsical and cute colouring books that I create for Creative Haven.
Seeing how others choose to add colour to the colouring page designs I create is also endlessly fascinating and varied.
I decided that I’d like to turn the sunflower and wheat elements of yesterday’s drawing into a mandala. And this is the result.
I’m fairly happy with it, though I think some parts lack contrast to really give them some visual volume. But it will do, for now. I like the hint of a suggestion of the whole mandala being sun-like. it also reminds me a little of hand-coloured etchings or prints. It would have looked more like a woodcut if I’d used heavier lines and more texture. These are things to try to remember and put into practice in my next mandala like this.
This week it’s a mandala. Why? Well, I just really wanted to draw a mandala!
I enjoy the calming, meditative process of mandala drawing. And as I didn’t want to disturb that calm space I found myself in by making a right mess of adding some colour, I decided to go with an analogous colour scheme. Soft blue, teal and green are also very calming colours.
As it’s a colouring template, I’ve not added lots of textural patterns. However, that is something I can always play around with at another time. For now, the high contrast that brings a feeling of volume and dimension to the design is good enough.
I’ve had a funny couple of days, not necessarily in the funny ha-ha way, though!
I had a migraine yesterday, so no video nor post was possible. I’m feeling better today, just still very, very tired.
Today, I had plans. I was awake around 5am, again, and so did some pencil lettering ‘sketches’; the finished result of one is in the photo.
I thought I’d start to digitally ink the lettering in and add colour before turning my attention to a YouTube video. And the phone rang, and it was a friend. So, during the over two-hour-long chat, I managed to mostly get this done! Yup, I can ink in a sketch and so on while chatting. I just can’t chat and sketch, generally.
My plans to record a video this afternoon were then scuppered as I couldn’t keep my eyes open! So, on waking, I completed this particular piece of lettering and doodling.
It really is practice for me. I’m not only practising my lettering skills, but I’m also trying out new brushes and tools and so on in Clip Studio Paint. That is a constant practice for me. I tend to learn how to do something when I need to do that something!
This one is probably as good as it’s going to get. Time to move along to the next mini-lettering project and learn and practice more!
Mandalas are mesmerising to me. There is something so soothing about their rhythmic, symmetrical design. Creating volume in the design is always part of the fun! Choosing colours is always a bit tricky for me, however. So today I’ve gone with golds, yellowy greens and turquoise blues. A fairly analogous colour scheme, which means the colours will always work together.
I’ve not finished colouring the mandala, and it’s likely to sit unfinished somewhere on my hard drive. But it’s fulfilled its purpose of making me smile; a contented half-smile that is accompanied by a soft, warm, glow in my heart. That’s such a lovely feeling, and it took me many years of EMDR therapy to discover what contentment was. That glow, my touchstone of contentment, is always there. I can sense it even when the dark storm clouds of some emotional upset gather. It’s like a gently glowing lantern that leads me on through the storm back to contentment. It’s an amazing thing for sure!