Saturday, March 24, 2018

Working with Shapes

Working with general shapes is not how I ever learned to draw.  Instead I've always just picked a spot and followed the overall shape of the subject.

Many times I struggle in seeing those individual shapes and it's probably just because I didn't learn that way.  Now and then I like to try working exercises like this.....hoping it might make things a bit easier or an alternative method in seeing.

With this exercise, my main model is the bottom left bird on this sheet.  Following the same method I normally follow (working from a starting point and following overall shape of the bird, I repeated (bottom right).  Then I worked the exercise breaking down with general shapes to see how it would turn out compared to the model.   All three look slightly different from one another.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Mass Roots / Massive Headache

This was a right brain exercise I failed at.  Maybe it's my imagination but I felt my left and right brain were battling for control.  I could not focus but instead kept getting lost.  I finally gave in and just sketched on my own not following the photo reference.  By the time I finished, I had one horrible

Discovery Gardens, Tavares, FL Sketch Outing

What a fun day we had yesterday at Discovery Gardens.  It was a bit chilly when we met up but sitting in the sun made it tolerable.

There were five of us and at first we walked around taking photos.  Then we finally settled in to do some sketching.

Normally our sketch outings are two hours but we were having such a great time, that it was near three hours when we took notice of how long we had been there.

The first two were sketched on site with color added later at home.

One of the gals was taking photos the same time I was and I happened to catch this pose her and I later laughed about.  She said I needed to sketch it........probably just being cute........and of course I had to  I laughed throughout the sketching process.  So much so that I had trouble adding ink to it after the initial pencil sketch.  As I worked, I scanned and sent to my friend and we had such a fun laugh over this.

I finally managed to finish the sketch adding color.

This is from one of the photos taken while out as is the graphite sketch following.

All were worked in a small Beta sketchbook except the graphite sketch, which was worked in a Strathmore Visual WC sketchbook.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Procreate Color / Texture Practice - Opal

When nothing else grabs me, I can always fall back on practicing with this little bear :-)

For today's practice I decided to work in Procreate.  I'm still trying to get a good feel for using color, and texture.

This sketch is using:

Brush Tool - Charcoal - 6B Compressed for the fur and the initial strokes of the wood surface Opal is sitting on.

Brush Tool - Airbrush - Med Soft for the shadow color before smudging to blend and soften it.  Also used for the pendant.

Smudge Tool - Airbrush - Med Soft for smudging the wood and soften the shadow

Eraser Tool - Charcoal - 6B Compressed large size to spot stroke for added texture to the darker fur color already worked.

2018 Wekiva Paint Out

Yesterday, several from our sketching group attended a yearly paint out sponsored at Wekiva Island, Florida.

This event goes all week long with artists from all over setting up around the area and painting in various mediums.  I believe they also provide classes during this time for those who wish to take them or at least watch the artist, asking questions, etc.  The final day there is a paint out competition where you have two hours to paint and then put up for display and judging.

There were eight judges that included other artists, art collectors, and just people in general who appreciate looking at artwork.

From our group of eight people who attended (Shari, myself, SusanF, Ella, Gail, Lyn, Vinnie, and Sharon), five participated in this competition where as the others chose to just sketch, watch others paint, and just enjoy the time out at this beautiful spot.

I was one who just worked a quick sketch in my journal and enjoyed the beautiful weather.  This time I actually pulled out my paints and painted on location.  I still prefer to do so at home where I have a solid structure to place my sketchbook rather than juggling everything in my lap.

I chose to work a bridge and why ..... I have no idea.  I find them quite overwhelming to try and capture so they look like they have two sides to them rather than one like in my all those railing pieces :-O ..... lol.   But it represents where I was sitting and the view I had :-)  What I should have zoomed in on instead are those two trees with the neat roots crawling down the bank.  Oh well............maybe next time as I'm sure we'll return to this place in the future.

This is our Vinnie working on her pastel for the competition

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing and hat

Image may contain: 2 people, people smiling, people standing and outdoor

Friday, March 16, 2018

Portrait of Hany's Friend, Marianne - Using the Grid Method

A very dear friend who shares with me his art, his experience, and mentors me with my own efforts shared a sketch he worked of another of his dear friends by the name of Marianne.

With my practicing faces, I wanted to see if I could come close to capturing this beautiful young lady.

Hoping to come close to likeness, I chose to use the grid method.  Even with that, I have learned it's not just getting down the contour lines correctly but shading makes all the difference in the world for capturing likeness.

I'm still off but think I came close.  And with kind permission by both Hany and Marianne, I am sharing my experience/steps with you.

A Midoris Traveler's Notebook Type Sketch Journal

My most recent project is creating a different type of journals for sketching and painting in.

The idea came from Laure Ferlita's post and the Midoris Traveler's Notebook you can get and refill with little notebooks by sliding them between elastic bands.

There are three signatures of four folded sheets of Fabriano Artistico Cold Press 104 lb watercolor paper and the size is about 3.5 x 5.5".  This gives you 16 pages each signature / 48 pages front and back to sketch on.

What I like about this idea is that the signatures are not permanently sewn together (at this point) and if you wat a 2 page spread or don't want to work with the bulk of the sketchbook, you can slide a page section out and work on it flat and then slide it back in.  Makes it easier too to scan for a digital copy of your artwork.

Once the signatures are completed with sketches/paintings, you can then sew the signatures together or just keep this book together and make another.  The elastic bands hold nicely.

This is a great way to mix paper surfaces up as well (watercolor paper, drawing paper, notebook pater, etc.) all in one little sketchbook.

I plan to play more using eyelets where the holes are punched in the cover and maybe adding beads and/or charms for a more decorative look.  I also want to explore sewn covers in place of faux leather once I figure out how to sew a straight line with a sewing  Maybe add a pen look, as well :-)

Thursday, March 15, 2018

New Toy - The Pocket Palette by Expeditionary Art

Just received this in the mail and am so excited!!!!  I couldn't believe how fast the order was filled and sent out to me.

Now I just need to figure out the layout I want and the colors I want to put into it.

I ordered the basic pocket palette and then one package each of the different size pans you can place in the case.  It's magnetic base so it's super easy to add or remove the pans.

A business card is included just to show how big (or little) this palette actually is.

UPDATED IMAGE - showing size relationship to full and half pans:

If the mixing area is not enough (which for me never is with any palette I use), I just use a white piece of plexiglass I often carry with me in my sketch kit.

This will be perfect for quick sketching / slap color over ink sketching :-)

Expeditionary Art - Art Tool Kit

Another Family Guinea Pig - Bob

While I'm still in the mood to practice faces, I continue doing so using family as my models.  I bounce back and forth between "eyeballing" and using a more precise guide of gridding.  This one is by the grid least for the face.  The rest I just worked in last and without the grid.

This is my brother-in-law who's presently in Canada on a ski trip with my father-in-law.  It's been a yearly ritual the family going some where to ski for a week.  We've been once just to be with family but that was years ago.

Our Little Hummer

Our little hummer that showed up a couple weeks ago is still coming around daily.  I'm hoping he's not the only one as he must feel lonely.  At the same time, he doesn't have to worry about defending his food

I worked this as a personal exercise quickly getting down a gesture with basic shapes and angles and then worked from it to do the actual sketch.

In Loving Memory and Birthday Wishes

Yesterday was my mother-in-law's birthday but she passed away back in October 2016.  The family keeps her facebook page open and everyone sends their loving wishes to Jan each year.

As a special tribute for the family, I decided (while I'm on the facial sketching kick) to work this photo of her. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

My Three Sons

You would think that after all those faces I did for the One Week 100 People challenge that I would be done with wanting to sketch faces.  But here I am continuing on.

These are my three sons when they were little boys.  They are five years a part from each other with the youngest turning 30 the end of this month.

The youngest and the oldest favor my side of the family, whereas, the middle favors his dad's.  The youngest and middle have hazel or brown with green eyes and my oldest has my eye coloring which is green with amber.  Talk about a

Neal.....the middle child ended up with the blue black hair my mom had.  The other two ended up with my hair coloring.......dirty blonde when little to darker brown as they got older.

These were so much fun to sketch!!!!

Monday, March 12, 2018

Our Sketch Group's Lunch at Eaton's Beach Sandbar and Grill

This was done in the Strathmore Visual Watercolor sketchbook.  A lot of people I know do not care for the paper in this sketchbook.  I, on the other hand, love it for how I work.  Even the back side of the pages work fine for me whereas for others, some say they have trouble with beading.  Maybe it's how I prewet the areas first working wet in wet as I don't appear to have that problem.

It's funny but it took several times looking at this "thing" to figure out just what it was.  Just looked like this brown elongated blob sitting on top of a rock structure.  FINALLY I was able to see it was an alligator's head.

It sits out front of the restaurant.  What caught my attention most were the signs

Ink - Micron 01.  Watercolor first and then went in with pen and ink.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Quick Sketch - Our Fur Baby

I used to be set up (office and art room combined) out in our sunroom off the bedroom.  The "living room was center of the house but because of no real natural lighting, it was too depressing to spend any time in.  We decided to move things around placing the living room in the front of the house with northern exposure with a big bay window plus another near ceiling to floor window a few feet over. 

I set up my desk behind the loveseat with a few art supplies nearby and spend most of my time there.  Our little yorki-poo, Miya, often lays up on the back of the loveseat to be near me.  She also has a good outside view as well.  I think she loves the change as much if not more so than we do. I'm just relaxing and watching TV and Miya jumped up on the back of the couch.  With her there I decided to work a quick sketch.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

The Granddaughters

While still fresh with all the people practice I've done this past week, I decided to try more formal drawings of my two granddaughters.

My favorite part in drawing both ladies was the hair and their smiles :-)

As I critique my own results, I find I need more work in the shading.  Shading to me makes or breaks achieving likeness in people as it helps shape the face giving it the uniqueness of the individual (if that makes sense).

This first is my 15 year old granddaughter, Madison.  This one was a bit tricky due to the angle of her head and getting the facial features angled correctly with the face.

And this is the youngest (age 12), Morgan.  She was a little easier for me to do for some reason.  I didn't have to do as much erasing as I did with Madison's.  

Revisit to Sketching Supplies and Kits

I think part of the love of sketching is not just filling sketchbooks and journals but also collecting various supplies and putting together a variety of kits one can use for going out sketching and painting.  It's almost like an addiction for me and I'm always surfing the net for new

I have several related posts under the key word (sketch kits) 

1)  This first photo shows only a sampler of the various sketchbooks and journals I use.  From back to forward and left to right.......

Sennelier Accordion sketchbook / Stillman and Birn spiral Beta; Sewn Hardback Delta; spiral Epsilon; and Sewn Hardback Alpha / Strathmore Tinted Sketchbooks; Global Handbook; Moleskine; Handmade Leather Journal / Itoya Presentation Folders with clear sleeves to slide your work down into / Langton Spiral Watercolor Pad; Handmade Journal; Visual Journal by Strathmore / Handsewn Hardback Journal; Spiral Handmade Journal; Handmade Accordion Journal

2)  Traveling Kit using a passport neck carrier.  Perfect for a small sketchbook, small palette, pens, pencil, eraser, tissue tucked down inside, putty eraser, and a waterbrush.

3)  Accruasee Strap- On Sketch Caddie:  Small palette, waterbrush, pens/pencils, putty eraser, tissue.  This sketch caddie has an elastic strap that wraps around the front cover of a sketchbook.

4)  Collection of pre-made palettes and those customized using old children's paint kits, crayon tins, and Altoid tin boxes.  With the pre-made palettes, I often customize them as well using empty half and full pans if the cases do not have molded pan inserts (like the Winsor & Newton Pocket Palette).

5)  One of my favorites - Lihit Lab Pen Case:  Left inside carries my pens and pencils.  The middle flap where you can add additional pens, I use to hang a small portrait Stillman and Birn journal, and behind the middle flap, I have tissue, q-tips, and a paper stump on the left and palette, travel brushes and putty eraser on the right.

6)  One of my day to day handbags I carry everywhere (my purse).  I always have pens, pencil, eraser, small tissue, waterbrush, customized thin palette and small journal with me at all times.  Inside the zippered compartment I can fit a 5 x 7 journal, small wallet, bottle of IB, and other small items I might need.  The back is where I carry my cell phone.

Keys and camera are attached to the outside with carabiner hooks......accessible at all times.

7)  Another favorite is this canvas tool bag purchased from Harbor Freight for about $10.  I take this one if I don't have a long distance walk ahead of me (I prefer something with a shoulder strap for any walking I might have to do).  I carry the green Lihit Lab Pen case full of sketching gear (as shown above), coffee and water on either side, large Journal, heavy duty cardboard with clips I can use for a mini lap table, white plexiglass sheet (about 8 x 10) I use as a mixing surface, collapsible water bowl, smaller journal on outside pocket, nylon bag with pens and brushes, a larger folding palette, folded paper towels, tissue, hand cleaner, small mister bottle........and still have plenty of room for more stuff if needed.

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