Friday is YouTube video day for me. Before I’d even had breakfast, I was filming the next part of this video series. I did get myself a mug of mocha first, in an insulated mug so it stayed nice and hot throughout the filming.
I changed the pen I used today. I’d bought a couple of Faber-Castell Grip 2010 fineliner pens to see what they’re like. I like them. They’re refillable and the ink is document safe but not waterproof I will use them for art that I’m planning to scan in. Oh, I’m not being paid or sponsored in anyway to mention this pen.
Anyway, the video is nearly an hour long and I chat away as I draw, particularly about Romanesque architecture/sculpture and it’s influence on me, along with mentions of La Tene/Iron Age/Celtic art and others.
It involves drawing a background pattern with a white pen – I used a white Posca pen. Next, the black design is drawn over it. At the moment I’m enjoying using Uniball Eye pens – they’re waterproof when fully dry and their nibs last a lot longer on rough paper like the mixed media paper I used for this sample. I used the natural version of the ClaireFontaine Paint-On mixed media paper as the white would show up well.
Finally, I used applied colour using zig clean colour real brush pens where I wanted the darkest part of each section. Then, I used a damp brush to create a colour gradient. I prefer a traditional paintbrush to do this as I can control how damp it is. I find the waterbrushes that have a reservoir filled with water are a lot more difficult to control how damp the brush is.
Adding shadow around the whole design was the next step and I thought I’d messed it up. However, I like the uneven, grungy look that has resulted. I’m going to learn to embrace the unexpected!
Finally, I added some white dots with the Posca pen.
The background pattern subtly shows through the colours, adding a layer of interest and an intriguing one at that. It was fascinating to watch it happen.
I did try this technique on white paper and it doesn’t work anywhere near as well, so it’s something I’ll reserve for toned papers.
An unexpected surprise for me was how much I like the way the Zig brush pens work on the toned paper, and how easy it was for me to create gradations in colour to get the shadow and highlight.
So, an interesting time with art, and explorations I’ll continue with for sure. It is really fascinating!
I’ve finished the line art for this particular design. Now, it’s adding colour to it, which is going to be a long job.
I’m trying out a color palette of greens, peaches and dusky pinks, but I’m not sure about them, or maybe I’m not fussed on the background. I’ll see how I get along. It’s definitely a work in progress.
I’m not sure what happened with the design. I had intended to leave open space in the design to add a lighter, airier feeling to parts of it. That just didn’t happen. I’m not sure about some areas, but I do know that colour can make all the difference to a design.
A4 Marker Paper Pentel disposable fountain pen, 02 Uniball Unipin pen, and a 0.38 Uniball Signo Dx pen Backgrounds and colours added digitally using Autodesk Sketchbook Pro
Note – I’m not paid, sponsored or supplied with any products.
I started this drawing yesterday evening. It’s not finished yet and, as always, I’m not entirely sure where it’s going. Intuitive art is me it seems!
This is being drawn on A4 marker paper with a Fountain Pentel pen – which is a disposable fountain pen with a plastic nib that allows different thicknesses of lines to be drawn. It’s actually rather nice to draw with.
I’ve added a light creamy-brown background digitally.
“Serendipity (n) – the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way”
Serendipity strikes once again! I’ve been thinking for quite a while about trying to get one video a week done for my YouTube channel . When visiting Amazon, one of the suggestions for me was a ‘document camera’ – a camera on an stand with all kinds of buttons to adjust the lighting and zoom and so on. A camera that is all set up and that will plug and play with my PC. So, after some thinking and dithering, I decided to purchase the gadget. It’s also compact, stable and can be positioned unobtrusively as well.
It arrived yesterday, and took minutes to set up and get going! And then it’s taken hours to get the new versions of the video editing software I use, trial videos to see how it works. Trying to speak as I draw, and eventually an hour long video that I waffled a lot in. I removed the audio, edited the video, sped it up to almost three times the usual speed, and added music and so on. And the result is the video at the top of this blog post.
I’m sure I’ll find it easier to do the more I do this. Also, I’ll work out how is the best way for me to create YouTube content that is interesting. And, I’ll eventually remember how to talk without too much waffling on as well! Failing that, I’ll have to learn to do a voiceover!
The drawing in the video isn’t finished and I intend to complete it during future videos.
Now, I need to decide on a video day, and I’ll have to think of arty things that will make interesting videos.
Natural Paint-on paper by ClaireFontaine approx 8.25″ x 8.25″ (21cm x 21 cm ) Flower motif – Tim Holtz’s Ephemera Various other papers as mats. Black fine Uniball ‘Eye’ pen Gold Sakura Gelly Roll pen White Sakura Souffle pen White and brown pastel pencils
Today’s offering is another entangled/zentangle cartouche around a piece of vintage ephemera.
I’m trying to learn lessons of past attempts at these kinds of frames or cartouches. The layers of borders seem to work well for me. They’re balanced and cohesive. Also, the colours used help to bring them together as well.
It’s the Vernal Equinox here in the Northern Hemisphere – Autumnal Equinox to those of you south of the equator, so hello autumn to you!
And, typically of me, my arty offering today isn’t really all that springline, apart from the nesting birdies that is!
Some more Zentangle cartouches have been done by me. The central images are all from packs of Tim Holtz’s ephemera – Field Notes or Botanicals. I gave these a bit of a shiny glaze with some gloss medium; it helps to bring out the colours.
I’ve used a variety of media and paper for these. The squares are either 3.75″ x3.75″ or 4″ x 4″ in size. The rectangular cartouche is 3.3″ x 5.2″ in size.
I quite like all of them, though part of me is irked by the lopsided box around the beetle!
These take a surprisingly long amount of time to complete. It’s very pleasurable time, especially as I lose myself in the process.
Over the past two or so days, I’ve not been feeling quite right. I’ve spent a lot of time cwtched up in bed, and about the only art I’ve felt like doing is small projects that I don’t feel overwhelmed by.
I saw the idea of zentangle cartouches on the Zentangle YouTube channel a little while back and wanted to give them a go. I’d done one a little while ago where I’d used some vintage rose ephemera from a set of Tim Holtz’s Field Notes ephemera on a piece of natural coloured mixed media paper. I wasn’t at all sure with what I’d ended up with. However, I did want to revisit this idea once again.
So, I decided to explore the idea of cartouches once again. This time, I used smaller pieces of creamy Fabriano Medioevalis paper, which comes sized to 3.3″ x 5.2″ (85mm x 132mm), with lovely rough edges. This is really soft paper, the surface is easily damaged by using a tortillon too roughly.
I added the focal points, again from the Field Notes ephemera by Tim Holtz, along with some little quotes. The quotes are from the sets of ‘chit chat’ stickers, again by Tim Holtz. These items are in my stash from the days I messed around with mixed media, before I realised it really wasn’t quite for me. I admire what people can do with mixed media, but I just never seem to have found my way with it in a way that I’m happy with. I’m much happier wielding a pen (on paper or digitally) with love and a creative heart, than getting rather messy and frustrated with mixed media.
My Reflections on these Cartouches
Anyways, I’ve had mixed results with these experiments in cartouches. My favourite is ‘trust your crazy ideas’, closely followed by ‘be you, bravely’, then ‘treasure. ‘stay curious’ and ‘don’t forget to fly’ are very close to these in how much I like them.
‘trust your crazy ideas’ just seems to have colours and patterns that work harmoniously both with each other and with the mushrooms. Perhaps I got a little close to the motif with the pen work, something for me to consider with future projects of this ilk.
‘trust your crazy ideas and ‘be you, bravely’ are both designs that have a small number of different patterns on them.
‘treasure’ is similar in that respect, but it feels unbalanced. I think I need to consider where I put the central motif; more centrally may work in my favour. ‘stay curious’ is a much more balanced design than ‘treasure’, because I consciously decided to mirror the patterns used, even though the motif was not placed centrally.
‘don’t forget to fly’ is just not a coherent design at all. I like the borders and the seed pods around the motif, but then it all goes weird.
However, I’m really not at all pleased with ‘live gently upon this earth’. It’s incoherent, too many colours, and the words and motif are just not balanced at all. I would’ve been better with not adding the words to this one in the first place.
Actually. It may be that I don’t add the words until the design is finished, at the bottom as a kind of plaque or border, or floating over an area of the cartouche with a border around them, or just not use them at all. I need to experiment with these.
My own ephemera designs?
I also know I’m quite capable, I think, of drawing my own ‘epehemera’ to add as focal points. However, as I tend to draw at a much bigger scale, I’d either need to scan my drawing in, or draw digitally, and reduce the scale before printing them out. At this time, I have a laser printer, which is great for printing documents and so on but not so much for artwork. It changes the surface properties of the paper used. Also, I can’t use specialist art paper with the printer. If I’m going to go down this route of arty expression I think I need to consider changing this printer for an inkjet printer again, especially one that has waterproof, or at least water resistant, ink.
What to do with my artwork?
My home is increasingly becoming filled with my artwork. Most of it I have digital versions of them – either scans or photographs. I do need to decide what to do with my artwork as I really do need to let it go to new homes. Any suggestions, drop me a comment!
Also, I have a problem with putting a price on my artwork, if I were to sell it. I have absolutely no idea of what it’s value could be to other people, or even if anyone would want to purchase it. Again, any suggestions, drop me a comment! Any help or advice would be much appreciated.
Two drawings today, both done over the night as I couldn’t sleep as I really wasn’t at all well.
The larger one is a Zentangle ‘cartouche’. The central floral image is from one of Tim Holtz’s Ephemera packs. The paper is natural coloured mixed media paper by ClaireFontaine. I used a mixture of black, gold and rusty-red pens to draw the frame around the image. To add colour and shadow I used a mixture of pastel and graphite pencils, along with some tortillons. The design is approx. 12.5cm x 16cm (approx 3″ x 5″).
The smaller design is approx. 13cm x 8.5cm (3.3″ x 5.2″) in size. The paper is a piece of Medioevalis paper by Fabriano. This is lovely soft, gently textured paper that has a high cotton content. It’s easily damaged by the use of tortillons, however. So, I did add some shadows with a graphite pencil, but then added colour with Inktense pencils, brush and water. The paper really works well with wet media it seems. To draw the design I used a black fineliner, a brush pen and white and gold gelly roll pens.
I saw the ideas of cartouches, as a decorative frame around writing or image, and Zentangle designs on a youtube video and wanted to try it out. I decided to do that in the dark depths of the night when I wasn’t able to sleep. I may very well experiment with this idea as time goes on – particularly using drawings of my own as the focal point. I’ll see how it goes.