Mandala Monday WIP

Mandala Monday

Monday is definitely mandala day! I’ve been working on this mandala for the past week, on and off. It’s taken me lots of attempts to get the colours and brushes to work the way I’d like. I’m quite happy with it now.

I like the combination of warm and cool violets and teal-ish greens. They’re close enough together on the colour wheel to work harmoniously together.

I’m just adding colour at the moment. I will think about adding patterns to the various areas once the colour is all complete.

Although the black lines are quite bold in this design, the colour seems to make them almost disappear. They seem to become, almost, the darkest shadows that separate the different colour areas, deep cuts that delineate the different sections. I’ve never really noticed that before, and I think it’s a nice observation.

I’ve been enjoying, as always, adding shadow and highlight to give that sense of volume and layers to the design. It’s always fascinating to me how such simple use of colour can add so much interest.

Vlogging

I’ve worked out that all the youtube videos I’ve been creating are really vlogs. I can be incredibly dense at times about such things. I do talk about different things in them than I do on this blog. My thoughts are different when I write and when I talk it seems. Or perhaps the process of writing slows my thoughts down in a way speaking out loud doesn’t.

Anyway, I’m enjoying creating the vlogs. As I draw every morning just for fun and to warm up my muscles, joints and creative mind and heart, it’s nice to share that process with others. I hope people gain inspiration and insight from the vlogs.

It’s been heart-warming and humbling for the lovely comments people have left there. I really appreciate every like and new subscriber.

In today’s vlog, I draw on vellum, and then paper when the vellum curls too much to be easy to hold down.

Zoom get togethers

Saturday I hosted a Zoom get together for any members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group who’d like to join in. Last night, I was chatting to Brett, one of the founders of the group and the person who keeps everything running smoothly there. She often has trouble getting onto Zoom, and so we decided to give it a go and we worked out the best way for her to join in.

So, after a short chat, we both suggested about the same time that we could open the meeting up to the group. One member joined us and we chatted until just past midnight for me.

I’ve also set up a meeting for Tuesday tea-time, UK time and the details will be posted in the group for members to join in.

Anyway, I didn’t really settle down to sleep until around 2 am, and I’m really feeling the lack of a good night’s sleep now. I suspect another nap will be on the cards sooner rather than later. However, I do want to get out for a walk again today. I’ll be trying to time it to dodge the heavy rain showers we seem to have.

Testing, testing

This is a rather mechanical-organic-entangled kind of drawing, that is a work in progress. I started two similar drawings, but then messed them up as I smeared ink too badly.

This one, though, is gradually growing. Perhaps the machinery is all abandoned bits and bobs that nature is now reclaiming. Who knows! Perhaps there is a bit of a story in my art after all.

I did make a short youtube video this morning as I drew part of this design. Yesterday, I took delivery of a stand-sit thingy that sits on my desk. I realised I spend way too much time sitting down in a day, drawing and so on. So, I thought being able to stand and work may be a good thing.

Yesterday afternoon, after it arrived, I tested it out to do some digital art. All fine and good! It was a pleasant change to stand and work, that’s for sure.

This morning, I wondered how I’d get on drawing traditionally. So, I thought I’d make a little video of me drawing a thinking out loud.

It’s OK to work when standing up, but i’m going to have to set the thingy (must give it a name!) a bit higher so I’m not bending my back a tad awkwardly to work. Mind you, that may be solved if I wear the right pair of glasses!

All the same, I think it’s a fab investment, and as it lowers to being just about three inches higher than my desk surface and I can push it back out of the way, it’s fab.

It’s raining fairly steadily and heavily at the moment. We have a weather warning here in South Wales, one to take care when driving. I’ve got no plans to go out. Actually, even if it was dry I have no plans to go out. A walk isn’t a good idea at the moment. I twisted my knee awkwardly yesterday. Walking up/down slopes was problematic for me on my walk yesterday. Going up and down stairs can be really painful. So, my knee needs some tlc to recover, quiet day today then.

Passion – Part 3

I’ve got some more of this design done as I had my morning mocha! It’s coming along and next week should see the drawing completed.

I have created a YouTube video of the drawing process, along with me talking about all kinds of stuff.

Drawn with 08 and 05 Unipin pens on Bristol Board.

Wednesday WIP – Morning entangled drawing

Yup, a video. I’m finding it really useful to think out loud as well as share my art, inspiration, and random ramblings with people.

There are, apparently, two kinds of thinkers – those who are aware of their thoughts, and those who aren’t until they can speak them out loud. I’m the latter.

Being able to speak about my art, albeit through YouTube, is helping me understand more about myself, my art, and bringing thoughts out into spoken words so I can identify them.

These thoughts are different to the thoughts I journal about. That’s curious to me. Perhaps that’s simply because I’m creating art, talking to people who are interested in my art, and that’s the main focus.

This is a work in progress for sure. And by talking about my process, I realise that I’m not ‘doodling’ as such. There is thought, consideration and process going on as I create.

All I can say is thank you to the people who take the time to watch, who let me know I’m not speaking to myself, and that they’re enjoying watching my arty creativity in action.

Entangled Frame – Part 4

This is the final installment of the frame/background I’ve been creating as my morning warm up art.

Today, I finish adding colour and also apply Distress Microglaze to bring out the colours.

Thanks to everyone who’s taken some time to watch my videos, leave a comment, like the videos and/or subscribe to my YouTube channel.

It’s nice to be able to share my art in process, but also to share insights into myself, my artistic processes. Indeed, giving voice to my thoughts makes me aware of them. As I work, I’m usually oblivious to the thoughts that happen as I create. Either they’re mostly in my subconscious, or so ephemeral and passing that I don’t notice them.

Saturday Morning Headache…

What do I do when I wake with a headache? Draw and film it for another YouTube video.

Today, I decided to colour a piece of cartridge paper, add a vintage photobook photo, and draw a frame around it that will, eventually, fill most of the paper.

I recorded the first fifty minutes or so today, but the artwork isn’t finished yet! I don’t know when I’ll get the next part done, but I’ll be sure to film it too.

Saturday WIP

I’ve been lacking artistic oompf and inspiration in the last day or so. This morning, I remembered all those tiles I’d created in the Repper app and thought using one as the basis for some art may be a good idea to get me creating. It seems to have worked.

I’ve finished, I think, the lineart, and I’ve started to add colour along with some pattern/texture. I’m not entirely sure if the glow/shadow patterns are working. Also, I don’t seem to have that intensity of contrast/highlight in the colours. Still there appears to be some volume in the individual shapes, so that’s ok.

The choice of colours, the fussy patterns and the lack of intense contrast between shadow/highlight may just be indicative of my ‘meh’ mood today.

Still, it’s almost time for me to shower and head out for my walk. It’s sunny but very breezy outside. My window is open and I’m revelling in the cool air flowing over my exposed skin. Actually, it’s rather more than breezy, there’s quite a stiff wind blowing! Invigorating and perfect for a walk!

Template Thursday

It’s Thursday once again, and that means another template for the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.

This week, it’s a typically entangled one, with plenty of botanicals, which is quite apt as it’s Earth Day 2021 today.

I drew the design with pen on paper, and added the colour and background digitally.

Yesterday, I was missing in action from my blog, and much of social media. It was one of those days where it just didn’t happen. I was awake early for my weekly delivery from Abel and Cole. Mid-morning I had the monthly frustration of getting my prescription from the pharmacy. I then actually went for a walk. It was a shortish one after being relatively inactive for so many months, but it was lovely to be out. To see the spring flowers – primroses, a few early bluebells, celandine, cuckoo flower, birdseye speedwell, daisies, dandelions, lords and ladies, a few colourful primula scattered here and there amongst the primroses, flowering cherries puffballs of pink blossom, wallflowers and tulips. The trees were starting to shake out their new, still-furled leaves, getting ready for their May-ball.

It was lovely to be out and moving. However, in the afternoon, I began to crash and burn. I was getting increasingly frustrated with any attempts to colour part of this template. Nothing seemed to work. So, in the end I decided I was overly tired and had a nap.

On waking, I still didn’t feel like getting frustrated with art again, so I pottered around in the evening, being gentle with myself.

I woke this morning with the solution to my problem – the plain, white background I was working on was what was contributing to the frustration. So, I popped a soft coloured craft paper background, and things just started working. However, I wanted one that resembled the sky, or sea, so I altered the background later on.

That’s where I am at the moment with this template, and that’s how it’s likely to stay. Others will complete it in beautiful and varied ways that express themselves, and I shall look forward to seeing how people tackle it, as always.

Mandala – finished.

I’ve spent this morning finishing yesterday’s mandala.

I’m fairly pleased with the result. I love the sense of volume I have in the design. I almost feel like I put my fingers inside some of those ‘folds’ around the chains of seeds! And being able to create this intensity of volume or dimension in my artwork is what makes me smile. It’s not often I say I love my work, that’s for sure.

I’m not so happy about the background texture/colour. However, it’ll do for now, as I can always go back and change it.

I added a third colour – cool blues – to this design. The last ring of ‘seed pods’ would’ve been brown, and I thought there was enough brown in the design already. Also, I wanted the furled, stylised leaves in the other ring to be green, so blue was the colour I settled on.

I had a bit of a ‘ta-da!’ moment as I was adding colour to the furled leaves. I recognised that I was starting to use a pattern as a way of adding the highlights and shadows, a shape that could be used in all of these particular forms.

My final task, before calling this mandala done (for now at least) was to add shadow around the whole mandala. I don’t think I’ve been all that successful with it. Again, it’ll do for now until I work out a better way of doing this.

In hindsight, the choice of that coppery brown may not have been the best one I’ve made. However, this mandala really has been a fab learning experience for me – not just of the software I’m using, but of how I work artistically. I’m finally beginning to think a bit more about what I’m doing. I’m still working very intuitively, but I’m recognising the unconscious thoughts that steer me as I work.

I think this is developing as a result of me talking about my artistic process as I create YouTube videos. That’s an interesting and positive side-effect of making the videos – they force me to express in words what is fairly abstract and unconscious as I work. I guess I don’t have many opportunities to talk about my art and process with others, and YouTube, and this blog too, is helping me to discover more about my own inner workings.