Today’s mandala includes a couple of Zentangle patterns – Taiga by Tomas Padros and a variation on Fescue, an original Zentangle pattern. Plus some ‘orbs’.
This was fun to do. It’s not often I use such a large area of a pattern, but Taiga is such a lovely pattern and it’s taken me a long time to work out how to do it well. I didn’t think I’d managed it this time, until I added shadow and highlight. Then, it just became so dimensional and, to use the crafty vernacular, ‘popped’.
Today, I just wanted a mossy, spring-like green. There’s still snow lying on roofs and hilltops, cars and shaded pavements. The days are noticeably growing longer, and the bright sunlight today is most welcome after the fog of yesterday.
It won’t be long until I see brave snowdrops and crocuses breaking the winter-hard ground. They herald that the return of spring is nigh!
I’ll be waiting until the snow has mostly disappeared before I go and take a walk.
I wanted to start my arty day with some intricate fountain pen drawing, and this is the result.
I didn’t draw on coloured paper though. I tried on some parchment paper from Manuscript, but the ink smudged so easily…so I thought I’d try some mixed media paper from Claire Fontaine, and I still had some faint smudging, but not as much as on the parchment paper, so I worked with it, knowing that I’d be able to clean it up digitally, which is what I’ve done.
I also added a coloured background to the artwork, trying to mimic the parchment paper. I think I’m going to have to scan those papers in to create texture backgrounds I can use digitally.
I kept the monogram shape really simple, though as I look at it now there’s space inside for some embellishment – maybe a bar or two with finials or beads on, nothing fancy though. Mind you, I’d love to add gold leaf to the borders and colour to the K as well. Maybe something I can do sometime in the future, with another monogram styled like this one but without the ink smudging that I could only remove digitally.
Note to self:- use paper that fountain pen ink will dry thoroughly on, on bleed on and won’t smudge easily!
I enjoy the tiny, intricate drawing as well, it is something that brings a gentle smile to my being.
Oh, I did use fountain pens to draw with. I used a broad Kaweco pen for the outlines of the letter and boxes. I then used a fine point Kakuno pen by Pilot for the patterns.
There were lots of oohs and ahhs and wows from me as I browsed around and picked up a fair selection of pens and pencils – a pink Brunnen fountain pen, a teal Faber-Castell Poly Matic 0.7 automatic pencil along with a couple of cases of 2B leads, some spiral pen/pencil grips by Tombow, an set of coloured Pentel Energel pens (12 pens in fabulous colours!), and an R2D2 fountain pen from Shaffer!
I know, I have a problem!
I had a lovely chat with the lady in the shop (whose name I’ve forgotten) about stationery, pens, drawing, teaching and so on. We also experienced a huge bang as a car collided with a big van outside the shop. We weathered the ensuing drama quite well, all things considered.
My pen stash has some lovely new additions, especially the R2D2 pen! If you didn’t know, I love Star Wars, amongst other things.
I’ll definitely be visiting The Pencil Case again, and I’ll be using the pens, fountain and Energel, to draw with alongside my other fountain pens.
Yesterday I said I wanted to turn one of the J monograms into a dangle design, and that’s exactly what I’ve done here!
I do seem to be favouring teals and pink as a colour combination for these letters lately. The colours were added using a combination of Copic markers and Chameleon Color Tones pencils. Again, I chose to use Copics simply because I wanted a ‘wash’ of pale colour to which I could add shading with the pencils. I also used a metallic silver pencil to add some subtle silver elements as well as a white Sakura Gelly Roll pen to add some white dot embellishments.
For the charms in the dangle, I drew inspiration from my recent delving into things Medieval to create some that are a bit different to my usual kind. A heart seemed to be an obligatory charm for me to include.
I worked on Daler Rowney Marker paper and used Uniball Unipin pens for the black lines.
There’s quite a nice juxtaposition between the sharp, angular lines of the monogram and the rather softer, rounded shapes of the charms.
I also could’ve dug into my neglected stash of media from my days of mucking about with mixed media and card making and so on to find Stickles, NUVO drops, foil glue and foil, sequins, sparklies and so on to add more sparkle and shine to the design. Something I need to think about again in the future. I’d also have to work on sturdier paper than the Marker paper.
I feel that the dangle could be a bit longer to give a more elongated and elegant design. However, I ran out of paper! I may have been able to squeeze one more charm in at the bottom … but it would’ve been a squeeze!
Note to self – when doing monogram dangle designs on A4 paper, make the letter a little smaller so the dangle(s) can be longer!
Today, my attention must turn to colouring the 2019 templates I designed for members of the Angela Porter’s Coloring Fans facebook group for the New Year’s Day Color Explosion event, starting at midnight as 2018 turns into 2019. I think some may jump the gun on that though! Still, it’s a bit of colourful fun.
It’s only just over a week until ‘A Dangle A Day’ is published. In the book, I take you step by step how to create over 100 dangle designs for yourself, as well as giving some advice about hand lettering, using dangle designs, and creating your own using elements in the book, or your own too. I really do hope you will all give drawing dangle designs a go – they look complex, but, as I show in the book, they only take a few simple steps. They also suit my rather intuitive way of designing, drawing, creating. However, they also work for those who like to plan things out first.
With the new year design, I’ve asked that those who colour it (or another template if they have no access to printers) as close to midnight between 2018 and 2019 at their local time as they can. It will be lovely to see a flurry of colour throughout the day as the world gradually moves into 2019.
I finished this up this morning, now the migraine has lifted. I completed the embellishment of the letters. The next task was to scan the work in and remove the dot grid background in GiMP, as well as tidy up any smudges and so on.
Once I was happy with the result, I printed out the words so I could colour and add metallic highlights.
To colour, I used Chameleon Color Tone marker pens. For the metallic highlights (dots) I used a mixture of Uniball Signo glitter gel pens and metallic Sakura Gelly Roll pens.
Adding colour really helps with the read-ability of the letters. I chose to add simple color gradations and kept to one colour for each day of the week.
I really enjoyed doing this – it started as a sketch and I’ve ended up with some hand lettering that looks quite nice.
I will, at some point, do a sampler of this hand lettering style. That would be a great reference for myself, but perhaps a source of inspiration for others.
I’ve mentioned it before, but I really want to create a dangle design monogram for at least one of this style of lettering. I think that’s the next thing on my list of ‘to do’s’ on a day where I’m taking it all a bit easy; although the migraine has lifted I still feel a tad ‘fragile’.
Hand lettering and monograms are an integral part of my style of dangle designs. Although lettering as complex as this isn’t covered in ‘A Dangle A Day’, I still offer suggestions and step by step instructions for creating dangle designs.