Monday, August 20, 2018

Curcuma in Watercolor

This one I decided not to add pen and ink.  A journal recording of three new curcumas we purchased this year.  Our first (four years ago) was light pink.  Love the darker pink or rose color of these.  Also love the lavendar flowers poking out along the little cup like areas.

Strathmore Visual WC Journal

Playing with a Carbon Pencil

I have various pencils but wasn't familiar with a carbon pencil (at least not to my knowledge).  A dear friend from our sketching group was working a sketch using her carbon B pencil and gave it to me to play with.

I'm trying it on various papers..............

Handbook by Global Arts (Mixed Media).  The man and the bear were sprayed with a fixative.  Then learned the carbon pencil is water soluble so I tested it at the bottom of the page.

This quick little sketch was worked on Strathmore Visual WC paper.  The pencil picks up the tooth design of the paper surface as noticeable in the tail feathers.

Before and after taking a damp brush to sketch.....

This one was worked on a piece of Stonehenge 90lb paper.  Also sprayed with fixative.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

New Toy - Scan N Cut 2 - Making Stencils

For over a year I've been considering a Cricut machine for making stencils.  I tried using a stencil burning tool but to me was too slow and too tedious with less than desirable results.  As I was ready to take the plunge, I wrote a dear friend (very knowledgeable with various crafts and gizmos) telling her what I was hoping to do and asking which machine I should get.  One of the main things I hoped to achieve was to be able to use shapes of some of my own drawings (like bears or people).  She recommended instead of the Cricut, to get the Scan N Cut machine because that way I could scan in my own artwork.

The stencils I want to make are for my journaling.  My goal is to make stencils the size of a journal page with all the shapes repetitively laid to fit on that squares or circles for making color or ink charts. etc.   This would save me time compared to taking ruler and pen drawing all the lines and shapes needed or using a single stencil shape and having to repeat it over and over until I achieved the number I needed on the page.

Other shapes I want to make, like my bears, are so I can quickly get them sketched on a page in order to play with wet in wet colors and then go back and add details (as shown below).

I spent hours using photoshop elements to create my originals to scan of repeated shapes and a few of my bears and people.  Then yesterday I spent the entire day getting them into the Scan N Cut and finally cutting my stencils.  I think once I have the mechanics down with steps necessary, it won't take as long.  I'm still learning my machine and the menu structure.

How I've used a couple of the stencils so far:

The stencil with squares helped me to work exercises I'm doing with pen and ink.  The left page was worked first using a stencil I had with a single square.  I had to make each square one at a time lining them up to each other.  Took quite a bit of time to get all my squares down on the page.

The page on the right was using my created stencil making it so much easier and quicker so I could get right to my pen stroke practice.

This next shows how I can use shapes from my own sketches.  I located my digital scanned files of my mini bear I've sketched and/or painted in various poses.

Next I created this page group changing to black and white by using the threshold adjustment in Photoshop Elements.   I printed these off and then took a black magic marker to outline each shape to make it easier for the Scan N Cut to determine a nice smooth outline for cutting.

I had to then split these up into two files to fit on the size template material I'd be using as you can see in the photo of stencils above showing the templates I created.

This evening I thought I would try one of my bear template shapes to play with color wet in wet.  This page was worked in the Strathmore Visual WC journal using my Sharpie Pen (F).  The first bear I worked is to the far right.  I worked the softer looking bear second and find I really like the triad combination I chose.

Steps photographed (cell phone) along the way (forgot to photograph the initial pencil outline from stencil....ooops).

Sketching In Town - Simon Seed

Yesterday, three of us met up at Simon Seed in Leesburg to visit and do some sketching.  Another friend and member of our FAST group also came by to say hello but couldn't stay because she had another obligation.

This is what I chose to sketch.  I had never seen one of these before and had to look up information about them.  They look somewhat like a Bird of Paradise and yet not.  In researching this, it IS known as a False Bird of Paradise.  Proper name being Heliconia.  Someone shared with me that they are also called the Parrot Flower.

Morning was hot and humid with an occasion breeze.  After a couple of hours, I was more than ready to return home in the comfort of air conditioning :-)

Strathmore Visual WC journal / Lamy Safari with Lexy Gray Ink

Monday, August 6, 2018

Calusa Hummingbird Bush

Yesterday, Terry went to Lowes and picked up a few plants.  He found Curcuma being sold again with darker pink flowers than the one we bought four years ago (and still going strong).  Plus he found another beauty called an Orange Torch Ginger. 

One of the plants he actually went after was a Firebush and picked one up to place outside the front window where I sit and where we have a pole with three hummingbird feeders hanging.  We're having good luck this year with the hummers. 

I sat outside under a beach umbrella to sketch these two areas of the Firebush.  The umbrella was just below the hummingbird feeders and as I was sitting under neath, I could see the shadow and hear the hum as one was brave enough to come to the feeders while I was there sketching.

Sketched with a Micron 005 in the Fabriano Venezia journal

Writing was done with a Micron 02 pen. 
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