Another abstract drawing that is a work in progress. This time, the drawing is done, but I’m working on adding colour to it.
To draw this one, I used a hard Tombow fudenosuke pen with natural coloured mixed media paper. I enjoyed working with the broader lines in contrast to the fine line work of the previous abstract entanglement drawing.
I have made the background darker than the original paper, and I do intend to leave areas in this colour. For now, I’m working with colour to develop a sense of dimension. Of course, I’m adding colour digitally. Every now and then, I circle back to traditional media, and I think that diversion serves to remind me of how much I prefer to add colour digitally.
I keep circling around this. I like to draw designs with pen on paper. I get a much better sense of the flow of the design that way. But I like to add colour digitally. And so, it’s time for me to do what I can to accept this is how it is meant to be for me. I may dabble with traditional media from time to time, but digital art, at least as far as adding colour is concerned, is where I love to bring my drawings to life.
So it seems to be that from time to time I need that diversion to remind me of what really makes my artsy heart happy. A diversion or a break from the usual? Either, neither, both I suppose.
I do love the richness of these rather vintage, steampunk-ish colours against the warm, tan background.
My artistic mood today was for another mandala. Again, I’ve used vintage colours to complete this one. I realised, once I’d collapsed all the layers and saved it, that the outer pattern ring is ‘off’ from vertical/horizontal. Blooming typical! Oh well.
Mind you, in my defence, I was also ‘adulting’ at the same time, so wasn’t quite paying the attention I usually would.
All the same I’m quite pleased with this one, though that central space may need something. I don’t know at the moment. I need tea and some lunch!
Yet again, a lovely way to start a Monday. Mandalas are always a pleasure to draw/paint/create. I particularly love creating them digitally for many reasons, not least is the opportunity to experiment and learn new skills. It removes the worry of making a ‘mistake’ on paper and either having to start again or try to make that ‘mistake’ a part of the work. Often, that ‘mistake’ will be worked into the drawing, but not always and if I know it’s there, it bothers me, even if no one else can see it. The perfectionist in me gets a tad upset at it.
Having said that, there are a couple of things I’m not happy with in this mandala, but I can live with them.
One thing I do like is the colour palette of copper/bronze colours and that steely blue-grey. Vintage colours seem to be my thing at the moment for sure.
Started yesterday evening, worked on during my hours of mid-night waking, and on waking this morning, this measures 21 cm x 21 cm (approx 8.25″ x 8.25″) The paper is natural coloured Claire Fontaine Paint-On mixed media paper coloured with Aged Mahogany Distress Ink. The design is being drawn with a mix of 03 Unipin and 01 Sakura Micron pens.
I’m using a mixture of Stadedtler Triplus and Chameleon Fineliner pens to add colour to the design, along with a barely damp waterbrush to spread the colour out. Interestingly, some of the colour lines added remain visible, to a greater or lesser extent, depending on how much I work the colour with the waterbrush. Also, I’m finding that I really enjoy adding colour and texture like this.
The finishing bright white highlights are added using a Sakura Gelly Roll pen.
I find the fineliners used in this way give me much greater control over how much the colour spreads in the small areas in my drawing. They also don’t spread as much as, say, Tombow Dual Brush pens or Inktense pencils. That helps to control the spread of colour too.
I rather like the vintage-y look that the palette of browns and olive greens confers on the design, helped along by the background colour and texture of the paper.
Oh, I do intend to leave a ‘hole’ in this first layer of designs. I’m not sure I’ll do inside the space; a quote, more layers of design. For now I’m not sure. But once this first layer is done, I can scan it in and use it in different ways digitally.
There are lots of my favourite motifs appearing in this one, rather organic ones for the most part. What will appear from the tip of my pen in the rest of the design? I don’t know yet! It could be more of the same, or not. All I know is that the intricacy, detail and revisiting old favourite motifs is making my arty crafty heart smile.
“The state of having inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes, especially as relating to behavioural decisions and attitude change.”
Finally, the penny dropped as to why I’m feeling so out of sorts. Oddly, it was while I was listening to a documentary about the cult NXIVM as I was drawing during the stupid o’clock hours of drawing. Don’t worry, I’m not a member of a cult! However cognitive dissonance was mentioned and that was the ‘ta-da!’ moment for me.
Cognitive dissonance causes emotional distress related to holding contradictory beliefs or values. I’ve experienced this before during breakthrough moments in therapy where I’ve had to accept that I was a victim of trauma, that I really do have CPTSD and I’m not (as my mother would tell me) making it up, for example.
I’m poised on a knife edge, wanting to make a decision to leave something, but feeling guilty about thinking that way. I need to find a way to find some clarity to help me make that decision, and it has to do with my core values and beliefs.
Recognising this doesn’t make me feel any better, but it helps me understand what is going on, and that understanding will help me work my way through it! Making a decision won’t make it any easier for me to act upon it as there’ll be a lot of guilt and the old reactive feeling of believing I’m letting other people down.
However, I can’t put other people ahead of my own mental and emotional well-being. It’s never been easy for me to say ‘no’ to people, to leave organisations or people who are contributing to emotional and mental distress in myself. But I have done so occasionally, more so in the last year or two. And I will do so this time if it’s what I need to do to find that sense of balance, harmony, peace in myself once again.