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.
A little more colour added to this drawing, including some shadows and highlights to the areas of background colour. I always have a lot of fun and fascination adding shadows and highlights and the illusion of dimensionality the add to the design.
I’m still really enjoying the vintage-y, steampunkish colour palette.
As it’s sunny here, if a tad blowy and cool, I’m going to call it a day working on this art. Instead, I’m going to try to muster the courage to go out into the world and take a walk, and if not a walk, a drive long enough to top up the battery on Binky, my SmartCar.
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.
I always relax, feel my whole body let out a sigh of relief as I work on drawings like this one. Purely abstract, line and pattern being the focus, with healthy doses of black giving a very graphic feel to the design.
Playing with line width and pattern to bring layers and depth to the design is always something I’ve enjoyed.
I start with one single line, shape or motif and go from there instead of having an overall plan for the design all sketched out and ready to go. I like this organic, intuitive way of letting the design grow, developing it one pen stroke at a time.
I’m learning, slowly but surely, that areas of white space can be a powerful part of the overall design. It’s been a long journey to realise I don’t have to fill the whole sheet of paper with line and pattern.
I need to have a lot of trust in the whole of this process; that something pleasing will be created after hours of work with very fine nibbed pens.
What next when I’ve finished the pen-work? Do I add shadows, colour, highlights with traditional media or digitally? Do I just add a background coloured/textured paper? Do I leave it in it’s very graphic black and white?
Working digitally with a scan of the finished drawing allows me to experiment, though I’ve yet to work out how to add shadows in the way a blended graphite or pastel pencil would do. And I do have a tendency to use much brighter, saturated colours than I would with traditional media.
Perhaps it’s time I sorted out my own digital colour palettes from my traditional media. That is something for another day, however. For the rest of the day, I’m going to lose myself in completing this drawing.
Yet another work in progress! Also, another gel pen drawing, this time with Zebra Sarasa 0.5 pens in vintage tones. For this drawing I used smooth, heavy-weight cartridge paper. This paper has more texture than the bristol board and the pens didn’t work as well on this.
The colours are rich and intense, and the palette will work well with the Arteza Vintage gel pens. I like the finer line of these pens. I do like these pens, which I bought the same time as the Arteza ones. None of my posts are sponsored by any company, nor do I receive any products for free to review. I mention brands and names in case you’re interested in what I’m using to create art with.
I’ve had a poor night’s sleep. I don’t really know why. So, I was working on this during the insomnia hours. It kind of reminds me of layers or rock beneath the layers we walk and live on. I think the geology lectures I’ve been listening to have had an unconscious influence! The lower layers definitely have an intensely metamorphic feel to them.
Working with colour to draw is something new for me. I’ve dabbled in the past but always reverted to black quickly. I know understand that the colours were just too bright, or perhaps my taste in colours was for the bright tones. I still love those kinds of intense colours, but there’s something alluring about these vintage tones that I seem to need to use and express.
Always growing, developing, experimenting, learning and changing. Sometimes these changes are subtle with the art looking the same but somehow different. At other times they are sizeable changes. Sometimes these changes are a temporary diversion to explore the new. Even these temporary changes have an influence on my artistic voice.
Monday dawns and along with it is the desire to create a mandala.
This one is a work in progress for sure. I’m still playing around with various brush settings to get the depth of contrast I desire. It’s working out fairly well so far, especially as I’ve chosen a limited palette of blue, teal and green. Also, my favourite seedpod, leaf and arch shapes are very much in evidence here. There’s also lots of little orbs. It never ceases to amaze me how such a simple collection of shapes can result in a fairly complex design.
What is unusual for me, like last week’s mandala, is the lack of black lines in the design. I think that’s a bit of a rebellion by me to all the pen drawing I’ve been doing of late. Also, I love colour, but find it so frustrating to add to my pen drawings.
When I work digitally, colour seems to work differently for me. I think it may be the ability to work and rework the colour endlessly until I get something that suits me. Maybe it’s the ability to get the depth of contrast I like. Or maybe it’s something else entirely, I really don’t know.
This part of the mandala, about a quarter to a third, has taken me around three hours to do so far, thanks to the symmetry tools available to me in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.
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.
This is the result of last night’s attack of the insomnias as well as this morning.
I’ve been drawing with a Sakura Pigma Sensei 04 pen on A4 natural coloured Claire Fontained mixed media paper.
I like both the Pigma Sensei and Micron PN pens for their much more durable plastic nibs. The texture of this paper makes quick work of the the fibre tips of Unipin or Pigma Micron pens.
I’ve started added some colour, shadow and highlights using a mixture of graphite and coloured drawing pencils, as well as a white Gelly Roll pen. Just the grey and sepia toned pencils start to add depth, dimension and life to the drawing. Oh, and a Tombow Mono micro eraser to remove the pencil from where it may have strayed.
I could’ve done this digitally, but at the moment digital coloring is just irritating me. I have no idea why; it just is. I go through phases like this. It’s the ups and downs, twists and turns of both my emotional health and my creative instincts and needs. At the moment, it also means I’m really limiting myself to the colours I can use, something I do tend to struggle with when I have the infinite digital colour palette available to me.
Adding colour as I work lets me bring out particular areas of the design, as well as finding ways to make areas I’m not happy with either work or fade towards the background.
There’s plenty more work to do with this drawing, mostly in the bottom right area. I like the light and airy features towards the top and want to keep them that way.
Today’s image is a drawing I started this morning. I’m using a .35 Rotring Rapdiograph pen on Claire Fontaine PaintON paper. After scanning the drawing in, I’ve added colour and backgrounds digitally, just for fun.
After several days where the focus has been on digital art and editing, it’s a pleasure to use pen and paper, just as a change. I’ve said it before – I do love working digitally, but drawing on paper is something I also very much love. Combining the two is my ideal way of working, mostly. Mandalas are most probably the exception – I do like the way digital tools speed up the drawing process.
I have, two final edits being approved, completed all the templates for Entangled Starry Skies. I did them while I was awake in the wee small hours of the morning and stayed up until my Abel & Cole delivery had been made. Then, I was ready to return to bed, after breakfast!
Since I woke, I immersed myself in drawing, and I’ll be returning to it in a while as tomorrow is Template Thursday and I have a template to create!
I’ve completed more of this WIP this morning. It’s coming along, but it’s at that point where I’m starting to think, “What the heck was I thinking?” about various sections.
I know from lots of past experience that I often get this feeling as I work on some art, and all I need to do is to trust my instincts and intuition and to carry on working on it. And so I shall. This is the way.