Another cool-toned mandala

© Angela Porter 2019

I’ve spent another quiet, calm and contented few hours drawing this mandala. Admittedly some of the shapes look a bit weird around the edges. However, it’s all about me learning and embedding new skills when it comes to drawing digital art.

Microsoft Surface Pen, Microsoft Surface Studio and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro were my tools for this one.

Some of the areas have patterns in them that remind me of Celtic, La Tene art, or of illuminated manuscripts such as the Book of Kells. These are art forms I’ve loved for as long as I remember and I think there are times when those patterns bubble up to the surface of my mind and find their way out through the tip of my pen! It’s nice when that happens and it surprises me!

Holly Mandala – Version 2

© Angela Porter 2018

I woke early this morning, it was still dark. The night has now lifted to reveal a dull, grey, misty, damp morning here in the Valleys of South Wales.

I wanted to re-colour the holly mandala in a more traditional colour scheme of red, green and gold, and so I have done so.

The colours help to give an illusion of dimension to the concentric rings in the design. Of course, the colours are kind of my signature – bright and jewel-like. I chose to change the background colour from stark black to a very dark, inky night-sky blue. I did add some lighter texture to the background to break the colours up just a tad.

It’s worked out ok. I think I prefer it muchly to the green foil version. The foil images are fun to do, that’s for sure. And of course they’ve allowed me to work out another way of creating art digitally, which is essentially by removing black to reveal the design. This has resulted in me drawing my motifs in a slightly different way to how I’d usually do them. They definitely have more of that lino-cut feel to them with the simplification of designs and lines. I like that.

I also like how the holly berries in the outer ring seem to be floating above and below the leaves. That wasn’t intentional! It’s just how it’s all worked out.

Sprinkling stars everywhere is one of my favourite things to do it seems and they do add a little magic to this design for sure.

Which version do you prefer? This one or yesterday’s green foiled version?

Tools used – Microsoft Surface Pen and Surface Studio. Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.

October’s Bujo Spread

Angela Porter October BuJo Spread 2018Can you believe it? September is just about all and over with. Time does seem to be flying by at the moment.

This was a really quick bujo spread due to me being away last week.

It’s also a very messily coloured one. I can tell I’ve barely wielded a pen in the last week! Talk about shaky and wobbly and lacking the fine skills I had.

Goes to show you gotta keep working it daily, even if it’s for a short while.

Mind you, I have new glasses and getting used to them is going to take a little while. For work, I have ‘occupational varifocals’. This means the lenses gradually change from intermediate distance at the top to reading distance at the bottom. I didn’t get to use them much last week, so it’s going to take a little while and some practice with them.

I also have varifocals of the usual kind (distance, intermediate and reading). They’re great if I’m sitting down and out sketching, or drawing, or knitting and watching TV. I find them a bit disconcerting for walking around and going up/down hills or stairs or twisty turny ways they cause me to feel a bit dizzy. I know my problem is that I have really good peripheral vision and there’s a part of the varifocal lens on the outside and innermost areas that causes fuzzy vision.

So, yesterday I took my favourite pairs of glasses which double up as sunglasses (they’re very cleverly designed to have removable polaroid lenses that look like they’re part of the glasses, which essentially they are) to have single vision distance lenses put in them so I can use them for walking around and driving. I can drive with the varifocals, but that fuzzy bit bothers me.

Anyways, I have a lot of practice to do with drawing in the next day or two before I return to my next Entangled Coloring book. I’m half-way through the templates and I have some lovely reference photos from my trip for the next ones, including some ideas inspired by Forbidden Corner, maybe.

Back to the BuJo spread. I drew the design on dot grid paper using Sakura Pigma Micron pens and coloured in with Chameleon pencils.

I like the design, not fussed on my colouring skills today that’s for sure.

What theme should I go with for November? Remembrance, bonfires, fireworks…feel free to leave suggestions!

Winter Solstice 2013

Winter Solstice 2013 © Angela Porter 2013

 

Another astronomical cycle completed as the Earth returns to the point of solstice once again.  The first day of Winter.  A time to reflect on the year behind, successes and otherwise.  A time to be willing to let go of all that has run it’s course, either by being completed or no longer needed, to make space for new growth as the Sun grows in power once again, increasing the amount of light flooding the Earth (well the Northern Hemisphere).

For whatever reason, it seems more natural to me to follow markers in time and the symbolism of the waxing and waning cycles of the Sun and how that relates to the patterns that we see reflected in our lives than does anything else. All a bit odd coming from a scientist, perhaps.

This year I will be looking on it as a continuation of a new start in my life.  I have been off work since the middle of November and it really is time to let go of the old patterns of negative thinking about myself that have so blighted my life and experiences.  It’s not going to be easy; fifty years of them whispering and disempowering and controlling me is a very long time.  It can be done and I have to see it as a long term process, with the help of my doctor.  It’s not been easy to admit I need help with all of this, or to acknowledge, truthfully to myself, the impact it has all had on myself.

However long it has taken me, I’m at that point where little steps are needed, and I do have to understand it is little steps, that this can’t be sorted instantly or overnight.

There’s been a complex set of circumstances that led me to this point of requesting help, not least of which was the nagging of a dear friend to get the help needed; it took them over a year to get through to me, that’s how much in denial I have been. However, we did get there.

I’m not prepared to air the circumstances here, where anyone and everyone can see them.  Those who know me will know what they are, maybe.  Those who don’t can infer for themselves what this may be about.

All I know is that I’m quietly on the mend now, slowly but surely, and that is all that matters.

My love and thanks go out to that dear friend who nagged me.  My love and thanks to my little sister who has made sure that I don’t totally lock myself away all the time.  My love and thanks to those I’ve seen and spoken to in the past few weeks, and before that, who have helped and supported me.

Energy Flow1

Energy Flow 1 © Angela Porter 2012

16cm x 8cm.  Sakura Glaze pen in black, Derwent colorsoft pencils, Derwent metallics pencils and Cosmic Shimmer iridescent/metallic watercolour paints on black card.

I started this one before my return to work a fortnight ago.  I noticed as I was completing it this weekend that it’s a little disjointed in places which may symbolise how I was feeling about the return to work.  The photograph really doesn’t show the colours properly, nor the shimmer and shine of the metallics.  However, you do get an idea of what it looks like.

Returning to work.

I made it back to work for the start of the Summer Term.  My voice, however, is still not right.  Work have referred me to occupational health and for speech therapy.  Also, there’s a microphone/speaker system on order for my room so that I won’t have to raise my voice.   My doctor has referred me to ENT to have my voice checked out.

The worst thing of all, is I still can’t sing.  I love to sing, have always sung with one choir or another since I started secondary school.  I join in the singing at any gathering where there is some.  This bout of laryngitis has affected that part of my voice, and I really, really do hope it will return properly and fully.

Not the car, again!

The handbrake broke on the car a couple of days ago.  As I’m writing this, I’m waiting for my nephew, who’s a whizz with cars, to come and see what needs to be done.

This is on top of a water leak from the toilet cistern a couple of weeks ago that came through the downstairs ceiling.

The ‘earphone’ on my mobile has stopped working too.

I hope that’s the triad of breaking done with!

Crazy Contours

Crazy Contours 1 © Angela Porter 2012

Approx 12cm x 12cm.  Black Rotring pen, Inktense pencils with water wash and various iridescent/metallic watercolour paints on Bristol Board.

The shapes and were inspired by one of the previous little textile pieces, the filling patterns by Romanesque architecture, prehistoric pottery, natural forms.

Fun to do something this fiddly and fussy and completely potty!