Monochrome Abstract

A bit of abstract art, along with a quote today.

The patterns here remind me of the folds of fabric in Romanesque sculpture. The memories of visiting Romanesque churches, cathedrals and abbeys are filled with the sense of awe and wonder at the beauty of the sculpture, as well being fascinated, contented and happy.

The smooth curving forms, the play of light and shadow – these are things I love to play with in my work, whether pure abstract or with coloring templates.

The quote is how I feel about what I create. I know I put more of myself into my art than I realise, but creating beauty, allowing others to share in what I find to be beautiful and fascinating is what I do. And there is nothing wrong with that.

When I create, I carve out time to find a space of peace, calm, contentment in my life. Creating art is my sanctuary, a time and place where I can forget about the pressures of life, the pains of the past, and worry about the future for a while. If viewing my art, or colouring my colouring pages, even for a moment, gives another person a sanctuary from the pressures upon them, then that is a good thing.

Insomnia

Two drawings I did last night when insomnia hit.

The blue one I drew while trying to settle to sleep in the first place. I was still stressed and wound up after a meeting earlier in the evening. I used light and dark ball point pens as well as a light blue metallic Sakura Gelly Roll pen. It’s an odd kind of drawing for me, but it helped to settle me so I could sleep.

The other one was done between 4:30am and 6:30am when I woke up ruminating about what I said, could’ve said and what others said at the meeting. A sure sign that anxiety reigned, even if I didn’t already recognise it at the time with flushed face, cold sweaty hands and that feeling of being a rabbit caught in the headlights.

Anyway, I picked up the same A5 sketchbook and a kind of pinky-red metallic Sakura Gelly roll pen and just drew. A bit more like my usual kind of abstract art – swirls, curves, circles and teardrop shapes.

Eventually, I got back to sleep for another hour or so. This is nowhere enough for me, so I suspect I’ll want to sleep this afternoon. I’ll try to resist the urge so that I’m really tired when I go to bed tonight.

Even though I’m feeling the knock on effects of the anxiety at the meeting, and the introvert hangover from being with people (yes, it even happens when it’s done via Zoom!), it was worth it.

Sketchbook Page

Over the past few days I’ve been sketching in a black paper sketchbook. I’ve been indulging myself in sparkle and glitter, as well as using Derwent Colorsoft pencils, a Derwent blending pencil and a white Sakura Gelly Roll pen for these particular sketches.

In both cases, I started using coloured pencils. Only when I had finished the design did I add the white pen work to see how it would look.

I also enjoy the contrast between the sharp, bright white pen work and the softer, more fuzzy and hazy coloured pencil areas of the designs.

There is also something fascinating and enjoyable about bringing pattern, form and light into to the dark. Which works well as a metaphor for abstract art bubbling up out of the depths of my unconscious mind.

I enjoy creating abstract patterns. Like all my art, it brings peace, contentment and joy to my creative heart. By manifesting these designs on a page, I bring further ideas for art in the future.

Template Thursday

Thursday again, and as I’m feeling better and able to focus more on work each day, I managed to create a colouring template for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group. It’s free to members and free to join – just a few, reasonable terms and conditions are attached to use of the template.

I am feeling better today. Yesterday, the day took unexpected twists and turns that meant I just wasn’t able to write a blog or do social media posts. I do need to get focused on work today – once I’ve had breakfast that is. But it’s nice to be feeling more my usual self after the latest bout of recurrent illness.

Art quote

A small drawing/painting, repeated to make a simple border for one of my favourite Kandinsky quotes. Kandinsky is one of my favourite artists, not just his art but his philosophy of art.

All artists and creatives put something of ourselves into our creations, whether we are aware of it or not. Colours, words, shapes, lines, textures, tools, media, and more are how we express our uniqueness – both in how we create our work and how we relate to the world that surrounds us, but also to our inner worlds of imagination, thoughts, dreams, emotions, and our subconscious minds.

Everytime an artist or creative creates, they share something of themselves with others. What that something is, is there for those who take the time to look for it.

Quote by Kandinsky

Last night, I went to bed a bit earlier; I wasn’t feeling all that well again. I wasn’t ready to sleep, but I wanted the comfort of being in bed, as well as the comfort of drawing.

So, I sat in bed and just let my pencil take a walk on the page. No preconceived ideas. No idea of what to draw in my head, only the desire to draw before settling to sleep.

This design was what appeared. In pencil on off-white mixed media paper. It reminds me of the designs on the Nazca Plains of Peru, but also some hints of Hundertwasser trees. Maybe even prehistoric rock art.

It was nothing other than a bit of self-soothing and self-care.

This morning, I knew I wanted to re-draw it digitally and make it look like it was kind of carved into rock. I’m not sure I’ve pulled it off, but I’m happy with it as it is, for now. I think I used too smooth a pen to re-draw the design. I’ve not got the right settings for that illusion of depth and dimension.

I wanted to add shadow and highlight to the design, but I’ve run out of steam again and my brain is fogging over. I think I’ll be returning to this design (along with others) in the coming days, weeks and months. This is something I don’t often do – create iterations of designs and artworks to put into practice observations, ideas as well as to try out new things with the same design. Perhaps this is what I’ll do in the next couple of weeks as I focus on completing a contract, but still make time for personal projects. I’ll see how I feel.

The design is purely abstract. As my favourite abstract artist is Wassily Kandinsky, I thought I’d add a quote from him. This one seemed to fit my drawing today. It’s not meant to represent anything other than what brought me peace and comfort when I wasn’t feeling too grand last night.

World Kindness Day

Art and health

My day so far has not gone to plan! Do they ever?

I didn’t sleep all that well last night. I’m still not feeling quite right. My abdomen is still uncomfortable, though I have eaten. I’m still tired and I can feel my brain starting to get a bit fuzzy.

I had wanted to settle to drawing for the next colouring book, but other things happened and my mind is a bit scattered. I thought some art for the sake of art may help and this mandala was the result.

I had no idea what I was going to create, but warm, autumnal colours were calling to me, along with evergreen leaves and bright red berries.

It’s simple, stylised and I’ve not spent a lot of time adding shadow/highlight. It is really just a play around before I do my best to settle to drawing. It’s achieved a bit of calming and focus, though I could go back to bed.

World Kindness Day

Kindness is the thread that connects all sizes and types of communities and families. It’s what connects us all, one to each other.

This year has been a difficult one and kindness has helped people through it.

A big shout out to all those who have made the world a nicer, kinder place in such a time.

Thank you.

Template Thursday

It’s that time in the week where I post a coloring template for the members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

This week’s offering is a typically Entangled design, with some inspiration from Hundertwasser – the lollipop trees and pillars particularly.

I bore in mind my musings yesterday about me and straight lines and left a wiggly, wriggly, wobbly border around the design. I also made some of my arches deliberately wonky and wobbly too.

I drew the design with Rotring pens on cartridge paper. After scanning in, I edited and coloured the design in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.

It was a nice way to spend some time yesterday. I didn’t feel too good when I woke up, but as the day went on I distinctly felt unwell. The recurrence of the fatigue, upset tummy, lack of focus. Overnight, my sleep was really disturbed by dashing back and forth the loo.

As I’m finding it hard to focus for a couple to a few days at a time, thanks to these recurring bouts of illness, I’ve decided to take a break from the weekly templates until the end of the month. The book I’m working on is due to be finished by then and I need to use what energy and focus I have on that.

I’ll try to blog daily, perhaps with sneak peeks or sketchbook work, or blasts from the past. But if I miss a day, it’s because I’m either overwhelmed by work or fatigue as I go through another cycle of this illness.

I do think it has everything to do with the illness I had back at the end of December 2019. Sickness, diarrhoea, extreme fatigue, loss of taste and smell, brain fog, loss of appetite. I get repeats of the illness, albeit it much less severe.

I know it’ll pass in a day or two and I’ll be back to my usual self. But for now, I need to look after myself, and make sure I get my work done too.

Quote

If the quote applies, I have no idea what my morning drawing says about what my art says about the world! Perhaps it says more about my inner world – imagination and emotions. I’ll let you decide that one.

All I know is that my Tuesday morning art has been influenced by the drawing I’ve been doing for the coloring book I’m currently working on. Cute. Doodle-y. Fun. Using colour for the sake of colour. Lots of colour.

I drew the design with an 0.5 Rotring Rapidograph pen on Rhodia dot grid paper. Next, I scanned it in, cleaned the drawing up and added colour digitally. Finally, background, texture and quote were added.

A nice way to spend the first three hours or so of my day before I turn to other things, like breakfast, shower and maybe even a walk if the weather keeps dry.