Drawing Practice | 20 Nov 22

About a week ago, I hurt my back. I pulled a muscle at the base of my shoulder blade towards the middle of my back. I’ve been unable to sit up for much of the week, let alone draw.

This afternoon, I discovered I could sit and draw, and so I took the opportunity to work on my slightly rusty hand-eye coordination and fine motor control skills. Just over half an hour of blissful drawing before the soreness started to return, telling me I had nearly over done it.

I did film my drawing practice (view it here on YouTube).

I’ve so missed drawing in the past several days, and I am looking forward to building up my stamina for drawing as my muscles heal in the coming days.

I want to thank you for sticking with me through this lean period of posts.

Moon Poppies

A bookmark decorated with whimsical and stylised ‘moon’ poppies.

I really enjoyed drawing this one and adding shades of blue-grey to bring out the volume in the drawing. Of course, there is a drawing tutorial on YouTube showing how I created this bookmark.

A Fun and Whimsical Entangled Garden – #ComeDrawWithMe

I had a lovely time drawing this little garden this morning. It includes some of my favourite things – round Romanesque-inspired arches and some Romanesque patterns, zentangle tangle patterns, crystals, flowers, mushrooms and frondage.

Naturally, I filmed this, and a #ComeDrawWithMe or #DrawWithMe video is available on YouTube.

TWISBI ECO fountain pens with medium, fine and extra-fine nibs were my drawing tools of choice. An approx. 11cm x 17cm (4.3″ x 7″) piece of Ohuhu marker paper was my drawing surface. To add some shading, I used a set of three grey-green Arteza Everblend alcohol markers. Finally, a white 08 Sakura GellyRoll pen was used to add dots of white as highlights.

I have to remember not to use Dokumentus Ink, which fills my TWISBI pens, with alcohol markers; they can pick up some of the ink and spread it around. I must remember that Copic Multiliners or fineliners such as Sakura Pigma Microns, Uni Unipins, or Emotts are perfect for alcohol markers.

I do like the monochrome nature of the shading so far. I’d be intrigued to digitally scan it and add a coloured layer. Maybe when I’ve finished it, I’ll try that.

Halloween Whimsy!

What is Halloween without a clutch of whimsical drunken party skulls along with some tentacles, eyeballs, pumpkins and so on? Click on this link to see my YouTube video about how I drew and added colour to this drawing.

I love Halloween; it’s one of the few celebrations in the year that don’t fill me with deep sadness and cause emotional distraught. And, of course, when it comes to me, cute and whimsical, smiley and pretty is my preferred style of illustration.

I thoroughly enjoyed drawing this design earlier today. My whimsical heart was filled with joy as I just a few of my favourite things. I’m sure there’s a song there…

“Hats upon skull-ies and batwings on potions,
mushrooms on bottles and bright orange pumpkins,
Some stripy tentacles with round eyeballs,
These are a few of my favourite things.”

Well, it doesn’t rhyme, but it’s a start!

So whatever you are doing today, however you are celebrating, or not, I wish you the very best!

“TagH” and “Walk the line” | Inktober Tangles 2022, Days 19 and 20

To view the accompanying drawing tutorial on YouTube, click on this link.

Two lovely tangles today- TagH by Zentangle and Walk the line by Chris Titus CZT.

I really enjoyed trying out different shapes in the leafy Tagh. There are just so very many possibilities for this kind of pattern. I’ve long used this pattern in my artwork without knowing it was a Zentangle pattern!

Walk the line reminds me so much of eroded rock strata and microscopic images of cells. It’s a lovely contrast to Tagh. Again, it’s a pattern I’ve often used in my own art, and it’s nice to find it’s also been added to the ever-growing library of tangle pattern step-outs!

Inktober Tangles 2022, Day 10- Finery

Click on this link to view the accompanying ‘Draw With Me’ video on YouTube.

Finery – a revisit

After losing this morning’s video (or so I thought – more later!), I decided to have another go at Finery and record it.

I started with an A6-sized piece of mixed media paper and used the black side of a piece of Cut’n’Dry foam to add Distress Inks – Seedless Preserves, Dusty Concord, Saltwater Taffy and Spiced Marmalade. These colours gave a warm, almost autumnal feel to the paper, a contrast to the grey-green paper I’m using for my Inktober Tangles sampler.

Next, it was time to tackle Finery for the second time today. This wasn’t without some trepidation. I know how this tangle vexes me. I decided to use a plumptious Sumu motif for the finery grow from. After drawing that, I added the veins of the Finery. A happy accident led to the multiple leafy stoppers on these.

Then, it was the tricksy bit, adding the lines to create some Finery.

And would you believe it, I actually did it as the pattern was intended! I was shocked but pleased.

I used Inktense pencils (Thistle, Sienna Gold and Dusky Purple) to add the shadows. Finer 01 and 03 Unipin pens allowed me to add the filler patterns into the reticular (grids) of the Finery. Finally, a white 05 Gelly roll let me add subtle highlights, which make a difference.

I’m actually pleased with the outcome. This made a nice change from the Inktober Tangle sampler and from some other art I’ve been playing around with lately.

The curious case of the self-deleting file…

The mystery of the deleted video file has been solved! I saved this file and couldn’t find it. Then, I remembered I’d updated the video editing software I use and hadn’t changed where I, not the software, wanted the videos saved.

So, I went on a hunt to seemingly the most arcane regions of my computer’s hard drive. I couldn’t find anything. And then I was struck with a flash of inspiration – open the app in the software for recording from cameras and see where it’s saving it!

Ta-da! I found not only this video but the one I thought I’d deleted by mistake! I chose to go with this video for a bit of a change from the Inktober Tangles sampler.

#Inktober Tangles 2022, Day 7 “FluxEcho”

Click on this link to view the accompanying #DrawWithMe video tutorial on YouTube.

FluxEcho, a lovely floral tangle pattern by Lynn Mead CZT, was a delight to draw this morning. you can see my variations of the pattern to the centre-left.

I had decided to stick to a monochrome colour scheme for my Inktober Tangles, but today I decided to go a bit analogous! I’ve added some purple and blue to the design. Analogous colours are next to each other on the colour wheel – so green, blue and purple work well together. Even more so as the background is a grey-green colour.

Something had to be done about the hand-lettered panel. I’d added some colour with Inktense pencils and a water brush, but I wasn’t happy with the finish. So, I filled the panel with black ink and added the hand lettering using a white gel pen. I’m happier with this.

Seed Pods and Flying Seeds

Click this link to view the accompanying drawing tutorial on YouTube.

I love seed pods, and here is a small selection of my favourite ones, just pen sketches with some light washes of Inktense added to some.

I don’t know what it is about seed pods and flying seeds that I love so much. Maybe it’s their shapes, or the association with autumn, or the architectural and aeronautic nature of these seeds. Or it could just be they appeal to my sense of aesthetics!

Either way, they are fun to draw, adapt and use as focal points in drawings.

Just for fun! A short stop-motion drawing.

I was at a loss as to what to do in terms of art today. Inspiration was lacking. But a sudden thought came into my noggin and I though, “I could do a small drawing, stop-motion”. So that’s what I did!

It’s only short – 58 seconds to be precise, or is it 57 seconds? Either way, it’s short. And I make absolutely no apology for the silly music! I needed a smile today and I hope that this little video will bring a smile to others.

I have a lot to learn about stop motion, especially sorting out lighting. But it’s always been fun to to do, and so I will again at some point in the future.

Exploring a square Zentangle fragment

Click on this link to view the accompanying video on YouTube.

Time seems to fly when I get engrossed in a task. Today, that was exploring a simple Zentangle fragment – a circle in a square.

In Zentangle terms, a fragment is the basic unit of a repeating pattern, whether repeated as is or rotated/reflected.

It is always a lot of fun to see what kinds of fragments I can develop using the chosen one to spark some creativity.

It’s always lovely, too, to work on toned paper, in this case, it’s from Fabriano and is in the colour ‘Clay’. Whenever I use toned paper, I realise I’m drawing in shadow and light; the paper is the mid-tone. This is why I love to colour plain paper with Distress Inks or NeoColor II water-soluble wax crayons. The colour immediately becomes the backdrop for dark and light and a strong contrast ‘twixt the two extremes.

In art, chiaroscuro is the term used for the use of high contrast between light and dark in a composition. In drawing, this is affected by using a coloured background, and black and white ink or media are used to create the drawing.

As I was typing this, I realized I’ve long loved working in this way. Since my early days of exploring my artistic nature that started some 20 years ago, I discovered I loved to use coloured paper with white and a black or much darker tone of the paper to draw with. It was far more fascinating to me to draw in light and shade rather than tones of grey graphite on white paper. It was my chosen way to work when I did some life drawing. When I go out and about sketching, I will colour the pages in my sketchbook with Distress Inks and use black and white pens/pencils to draw on them. The shapes of shadows and highlights fascinate me; everything becomes very architectural.

I’ve often mentioned the only oil paintings I’ve ever done and how three-dimensional they appear. When people see them for the first time, they’ll touch them because they think they are dimensional and are always surprised to find out they are totally flat. The high contrast I favour in my work creates the illusion of volume.

This little journey down the pathways of memory has allowed me to make some connections. I’m smiling as some pieces of the jigsaw puzzle that is me fall into place, clicking together satisfyingly.

There are times when I have to work with black pen on white paper, but there are many times when I can choose what colour paper to use. And going forward, I think much of my entangled drawing that isn’t for colouring books will be done on toned paper.