I woke this morning with a dreadful migraine. Two emotionally draining days – therapy on Monday, an anti-stigma talk for Time to Change Wales yesterday – can cause such a reaction in me. It’s my body’s way of saying ‘Woah there Angela! Enough! Time out is needed! Self-care! Nothing else stressful for today at least, please!’.
So I’m heeding my body’s message. I was due to take all my accounts stuff to my accountant, but my vision and concentration is impaired enough that for now I don’t feel safe to drive. I know that with a quiet day and a nap later on I’ll recover.
Even though my eyesight is affected a bit, doing art actually seems to help with the headache. I think it’s a mindful activity that lets my mind and emotions relax.
So, I wanted to complete my days of the week in a Lombardic style script, and here’s my work in progress. You can see my pencil lines, both as a guide for letter heights and for the shape and spacing of letters. By drawing the outlines in pencil first it means I can easily make adjustments as I ink them in.
Next steps, when my head has cleared a fair bit more, will be to add the patterns in the letters. This really does help to define the letter shapes I think.
I definitely want to try some of these letters with dangles on them. Perhaps that’s what I’ll do while I’m waiting for this migraine headache to shift somewhat.
Wednesday is #wipwednesday around the interwebs and sometimes it manifests itself on this blog.
This is my current work in progress, well just a part of it. I drew the design using various pens on paper and then scanned it in. I’m part way through colouring the image. It’s going to take me many hours to finish it, but that won’t be today. I have appointments this afternoon.
I am coloring it digitally with the usual tools – Microsoft Surface Studio, Microsoft Surface Pen and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro. I’m trying to keep to a winter/yule/christmas kind of colour scheme. That means the purple coloured ‘berries’ may have to be changed, but that’s easy enough to alter when working digitally.
I think all the line work is done on this design. I say ‘think’ because I’ll leave it to one side for a little while and come back to it with fresh eyes later on today to decide if I need to add details anywhere.
I also need to decide whether I just add shading/shadow in greys or whether I colour the design, or create a coloured background, or re-colour the lines, or any combination of these possibilities!
Shadows really help with increasing the sense of dimensionality of the design, as can colour. That’s the one thing I do like to do with my art once I’ve drawn it -create dimensionality, especially if I can manage to make it look like different elements are not just layered but are on different planes.
I have other decisions to make too. Whether to add shadow/colour digitally or whether to do this with traditional media. I do tend to favour digital colouring because of the wide range of colours and vibrancies available, and also it’s easy on my achy joints. The same applies to markers such as Chameleons or Copics; they require a lot less pressure than pencils and the wider barrels make it easy for me to grip them when my joints hurt, as they are today with the colder weather.
So, I need to have a bit of a break and come back to this image with a clearer idea of what to do. I also need some breakfast – it’s getting on for 11am here in the UK and I got so engrossed in completing the artwork after showering that I’ve not had tea or any thing to eat yet. That could help me with making those decisions about this drawing.
It’s WIPWednesday over on the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group today. #wipwednesday
It’s also #wednesdaywisdom or #wisdomwednesday, so my wisdom for the day is if you’re not sure what to do with a drawing, colouring or anything else, just take a break from it and come back with fresh eyes and a fresh mind.
Do this especially if you think it’s not working out for you. Come back to it and push through that doubt. There’s always a point part-way through any art I create where I think what I’ve done is awful and I just want to destroy it and throw it away, but I’ve learned to either push through those doubts or to take a break and come back to it later with the intention of completing it.
Even if you don’t like the end result, learn from the process and work out what hasn’t worked for you. Focus on which parts you like and why you like them.
Even then, don’t throw it away or destroy it. Leave it aside for days or weeks and then come back to it. Your mood will have changed. You’ll really have fresh eyes and you’ll notice different things about it. It may be that the bits you didn’t like are actually the ones you now really, really like.
Make use of those bits in future work. I think that’s how we learn and grow as creatives. if we’re outside what we usually do or make choices of colour or pattern or shape etc that we’d not usually do we’re usually uncomfortable with that change. Once we’ve taken a break from that uncomfortable feeling and are able to look back on the artwork we can appreciate it far more.
Even if we still end up disliking it, we can learn from that as to what is ‘right’ for us and what doesn’t work for us and use those lessons in future works.
Another bit of hand lettering or hand writing along with my particular style of entangled design.
This is very much a work in progress. I’m just laying down the ‘skeleton’ of the design before I add colour and pattern. you can see the dotgrid ‘paper’ I use as a guide for the size of the elements of the design.
Not sure I’m at all happy with the writing, but I do like the bit of wisdom for a Wednesday.
All drawn using a Surface Pen on my Surface Studio in Autodesk Sketchbook.
I printed the quote out, then hand-drew the design around it. I enjoyed using some of my Lamy ink pens to do this. However, I needed to clear some smudges and smears up when I scanned it in. Thank goodness for GiMP, and the magic that I’m learning to use in Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.
I can see I do have some details to add to the drawing, but as I want to, eventually, colour this in in my more usual style, they can wait until then, perhaps. With colour there may be no need for additional details in pen and ink lines.
So, as well as this being a #wednesdaywisdom artwork, it’s also a #wipwednesday work too!
It’s #wipwednesday over on the #angelaporterscoloringbookfans facebook group. New members are always welcome!
Today is also the release day for Eerie Entangled Art, at least in the USA.
Don’t forget, you can pre-order A Dangle a Day and Entangled Butterflies, both of which are due out in the Autumn
A strange bouquet or a weird tree, with a wise quote above it. I really shouldn’t have continued to add elements to the drawing once I’d added the quote, but it is as the quote says, small steps in the right direction of learning.
It’s #wipwednesday over on the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group.
I tried four or five times to create this quote illustration using traditional media this morning. I failed each time; they just weren’t right at all. I’m still really anxious/stressed from the debacle of a car breakdown at the weekend. Once my stress hormones are elevated, it takes a goodly while for them to leach away. It takes a good while for this to happen as I’m much more susceptible to being startled or becoming even more anxious. I know from past experience that eventually things will return to a less stressful level.
So, in frustration, I turned to my trusted trinity of Surface book, surface pen and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro and created this one.
I’m learning how to set up pens in Sketchbook pro, and finally have one that mimics a roundhand nib. My hand-lettering is still a bit wonky, but I finally have something I like.
The background was made using traditional media by myself – distress inks on mixed media paper, scanned in to the ‘puter so I can make use of them.
Drawing on the surface is almost like drawing on paper, but without the eraser mess.
I do need to create more backgrounds for me to use now I’ve got my head around doing that.
I chose this piece of wisdom for #wednesdaywisdom because it is relevant to myself at the moment and the healing I’m going through in my EMDR therapy. I’m sure, however, that it is relevant to many, many people.
On another note, it’s #wipwednesday over in the Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans facebook group. I keep saying it, but they’re a lovely bunch of people, friendly, supportive and appreciative of each other. Why not pop along, join up and say hello?
For me, it’s trying out new materials, new methods, new styles of drawing, colouring, lettering, using my art in different ways, most recently that includes Bullet Journals (BuJo) and these little quote illustrations.
It’s looking at how other artists and illustrators work and letting what I see spark creativity in me, not to copy them, but to inspire myself to broaden my artistic ‘vocabulary’, to try those new things that develop my skills, to still do things in my own way but adding techniques to my toolbox of artistic expression.
This quote is also a work in progress, I’ve yet to work out what to do with the entangled drawing at the bottom – to leave it as it is in plain black, to add shading, to add colour. At the moment I don’t know what to do with it, but I suspect it will come to me eventually.
Talking of work in progress wednesday, it’s the day the members over at the facebook group ‘Angela Porter’s Coloring Book Fans’ share their wip’s. Why not pop along and join in? They’re lovely people, very friendly.
The patterns around the quote were also drawn digitally, using my faithful Microsoft Surface pen, along with my Microsoft Surface Book and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro.
I’ve started to add colour, though there’s quite a lot to do, including adding textures. It’s a pleasant way to spend time.
What I’m quite pleased with is the stone background behind the letters. It’s not perfect, but I got my head around how I could achieve this. Working in layers means I can do things I can’t do with traditional media, try as I might, but it involves working out how I can use layers to do different things as well as becoming aware of what I could use layers for.
Yes, I could watch and read tutorials, but there’s something satisfying about working out for yourself how to do things, and creating things in your own way. That’s the sheer bloody-minded independence I have at times.
Perhaps I could learn quicker with tutorials, but I also know I can become quickly overloaded with information and instructions and ideas (something that frustrates me as before my two episodes of severe depression and anxiety I had no trouble at all…) so bit by bit I discover what I need to be able to do at any one time. Then practice using it until it’s easy to do and natural.
I do love how I can flip-flop between traditional media and digital work, as well as combining the two, whether it be a sketch that is then worked on digitally or using traditional media backgrounds to draw upon digitally. It also takes me a little bit out of my ‘comfort zone’ too, but in an enjoyable way.