Well...I've decided it's time for a new challenge. While last year's daily art challenge wasn't always fun, it did push me to make a lot of art. I've not made as much art this year as I'd like to have by this point in the year so I need another push. What I really feel drawn to (no pun intended) right now is drawing and illustration. I want to get better and quicker at drawing but I also want t work on developing my own style and to find my creative voice (still looking for it) and all the books, articles, websites I've read say the only way to do this is to do the work every single day. I can admit that I've not worked as hard As I need to this year and it's time to get to work. I also want to find some ways to make some money with my art. I really don't want to have to go back to work...so anyway I'll be sharing my drawings on this blog again. I hope you'll follow along!
My new challenge doesn't have much in the way of rules but they will be drawings or illustrations, finished or not. They might take 10 minutes or all day depending on how I feel about how it's going. I'll explore different objects, collections, maybe stories...who knows. I just hope to improve my skills and my imagination in this effort. Today's drawing is of 3 vintage telephones inspired by photos. It's crazy to me that there are now people in this world who have no idea what these things are!!!
Wow, 120 days done....Crazy! I really had no idea what to draw today and I've decided I've been trying too hard to "make" art happen and I need to just allow it to happen. I've also been really "worried" about finding my style but in one of the many books I'm reading, it said something to the effect of, "don't worry about your style, just make as much art as you can and your style will emerge". So, I'm going to try to follow that advice and just create and try to create more than I have been and just see what happens. I love color, especially bright, vivid colors so I definitely think that's an aspect of my style/artistic voice that transcends mediums. I'm excited to see the other things that emerge. So, here's today's creation...colorful circles :)
Ugh...today ended up as a sick day :(. My throat started feeling scratchy this afternoon and then I started feeling achy this evening. I've had strep a couple of times and one time it came on like a ton of bricks and I really didn't want to feel worse. overnight so off we went to urgent care. The quick strep test came back negative so that's good news but I still have tonsilitis...yuck! Thank goodness I worked on these two pieces before I started feeling crappy. I love trees and I think they are definitely part of my artistic symbology. The pencil sketch of the tree resulted from wanting to play with some water soluble graphite pencils. I love how it turned out and it was so much easier to blend the shading with the water than scrubbing it around with a blending stump. The other piece is another like I worked on yesterday. This time it's on a card made from watercolor paper. I still have the leaves to do but that'll come tomorrow. Once done, this card is on its way to my husband's grandma for her birthday! Now off to bed to rest since I feel like crap...
Fall is my favorite season and it actually seems to be arriving on time here in Portland! It's been a warm summer and dry here (I know it's hotter elsewhere but I moved here for the clouds and rain) and I've been white knuckling it for a bit so I'm so excited for the change. Starting tomorrow, we're supposed to have rain and much cooler temps for the foreseeable future! Every year on Facebook, I post a poem or quote about autumn as an ode to my favorite season. This year, however, I opted for a visual ode. I saw a tutorial on The Postman's Knock blog this weekend for creating a tree using watercolor and a straw to blow the paint across the page to make the branches, It took me a couple of tries but I totally nailed it and I just love the result! I used pearlescent watercolor paint for the leaves so they sparkle. I'm totally going to do more of these trees...there are so many options! This is 4.5" x 6".
I'm feeling better now that I've recommitted to my project and my learning/discovery process. I didn't get a chance to start as early this morning as I wanted but I'm so pleased with what I produced and learned that it's a very successful day. Now, I'm going to sign off and read some books...art books, of course :)
I mentioned yesterday that I fallen back on bad habits and really need to recommit to developing as an artist. So, I got started earlier today and did some playing around with some watercolor paints. I love how watercolors look but I've resisted them because they can be hard to control and I've been so worried about "making mistakes" that I just thought maybe I should just avoid them. That damn perfectionist makes me crazy! So, I thought today was a good day to just jump in and see what happens. I saw a great tutorial for watercolor flowers yesterday and set out to give them a try. I think some of them in the first image look interesting...not bad for a first try. I also like the second image...they're like spider mums and a little bud. I've purchased a watercolor Craftsy class and have borrowed some Kindle books on watercolor techniques so I'm going to work on this.
I really do want to work toward finding my artistic voice, though I suspect I have several (multiple art personalities?) since I like such a variety of media. As I'm wrapping up my 16th week of this project, I'm recommitting to discovering my artistic self and working each day in earnest to learn as much about myself and art-making so that I can become the artist I know myself to be.
I found an amazing deal the other day on Derwent's Inktense blocks...Amazon had them for 73% off of retail, so I couldn't resist! I got them today and decided to play around a little to see how they blend with water and they are lovely. I'm excited to work with these more I've been enjoying working with watercolor paints but one problem with them is that they aren't permanent even after they've dried so it's hard to layer colors. These are permanent once dry so they shouldn't create mud when one color is put on top of another dried one.
I haven't talked much about my creative process lately, mostly because I haven't really been feeling all that creative. But I keep trying...ok, I'm trying at a bare minimum but I'm feeling like the time is coming to push myself, even push myself hard to find my artistic voice and produce at the level I really do know I'm capable of. I've fallen back into my super-procrastination ways and frankly, I'm sick of myself. So, it's time to recommit to my project and really go all out this time. Game on!
Gonna be honest, I don't have much to say today. I'm really tired, didn't sleep that well last night, or the night before...or for many nights, I guess. I spent much of the morning prepping for a drawing lesson. I have a great woman who I met when a friend of hers gifted her a Zentangle class with me. She has taken several Zentangle classes with me in the last couple of months. Last month she asked if I could give her drawing lessons (non-Zentangle) and it has been so much fun teaching her, especially because it's forcing me to really learn the foundational aspects of drawing that I've resisted learning. Anyway, I was able to finish this painting this evening. I am enjoying this style and I really like this particular paper. I wish I had made notes about the colors and process I used when I stained it because I just love the combination of colors that occurred. Well, good night world...I wonder what I'll come up with tomorrow....
What I'm about to say might be "out there" for some people. I've never really been into butterflies. They're pretty and all but I've never really had the fascination with them like as decorations or adornments, etc. The only thing I can really recall about butterflies is from a Simpsons episode where they go to Italy, run into Sideshow Bob and his kid, who's set on vendetta, is chasing after a butterfly saying "Vendetta, Farfalle Vendetta". My husband and I cracked up at that. Of course, butterflies represent change and transformation. I'm getting to the "out there" part...in the days after our beloved dog died, we were "buzzed" by several butterflies. We just had this sense that Kagero was sending them to us to give comfort. She, in our beliefs, had transformed from a physical being to a spiritual one and was telling us that she was not only ok, but still with us. Since then, I've regularly noticed butterflies, especially white ones (she was primarily white colored). Since then, not surprisingly, I've thought about incorporating butterflies into my work but nothing has felt like the right opportunity....until today. I decided that one of my ink-stained pieces of paper would look lovely with a butterfly. I think this will be very beautiful when it's done. I often forget to take progress pictures so I managed to remember today and posted the first 3 stages above. I haven't talked about my grief much lately, but it's still very present in my daily life but I'm managing/coping with it. It feels really good to be finding another way to honor her in my work. I miss her every minute.
Crystal Moody, who is working on a year of creative habits, mentioned the Collect app in a blog post. It's a way to keep a visual diary of each day. Here's my collage for the work I created/worked on in August. I took the 2nd off as a vacation day and some days have more than one pic uploaded but it's pretty cool to see all of my work all at once!
13 weeks in the bag and it keeps on going! I made the blue ink-stained paper a couple of weeks ago but wasn't sure what I wanted to do with it, so I figured it best to wait for inspiration to strike. I really loved the koi I did last week and feel drawn (no pun intended) to do more of them. I think the inky paper looks kind of like water so it makes sense to use it for the koi. In the other ink paintings I've done, I've let the colors form the objects by obscuring the rest of the background but I want to preserve the background in this one so I'll be painting the koi with more opaque paint, covering the blue where the fish will be. I'm thinking I want to use white, cream, yellows, reds and oranges on the fish to create a nice contrast between the background and the fish. I sketched out some compositions to get an idea of how to set up the painting. I'm leaning toward the composition with two fish, which will be different colors to set them apart from one another since they are so close in proximity to each other. We'll see :)
90 days! Wow...I'm really impressed with myself. I am so good at giving up on/quitting things, especially when it feels hard but I haven't quit this project, and it hasn't always been in a walk in the park. I really have no idea when this project will end but it's helping me be more focused on art making and learning that I just can't let it go yet. In fact, I could stand to be even more focused than I have been. I'm going to think about if I need to be a bit more structured with my project.
Today's contribution is my completed "The Great Escape." I added in the gold wire details on the birdcage and a few details on the bird. I wanted to keep them simple so that the vivid colors aren't covered. I free-handed the lines on the cage so they are pretty wonky. Part of me wishes I'd spent more time and gotten more precise with them but another part of me really likes the wonkiness...the cage is quirky and I like quirky. I like how this came out. I especially like my bird. I'll have to draw that again. Like I said yesterday, I like this imagery and will likely use it again!