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Showing posts from January, 2019

Lady Graphite Portrait

This is already the fourth week of my course - and almost the end of January!!  Whoa, can we just slow it down a bit.   Just an update that even though we live in the "deep South" I am feeling like it's the Midwest.  Our snow never materialized, but the arctic blast sure did and here we are at noon and it still isn't above freezing.   I don't think this is supposed to happen here!!
Anyway, on to the lesson results.  Actually I lightened the photo quite a bit.  Even though I shot this outside it came out pretty dark.  So the actually photo, if you lightened the whites, looks more like this, it isn't nearly as washed out as it appears.
This lesson was a lot more in my comfort zone than last week's van Gough.  I started out doing portraits with this method - using a stump/tortillion to put the graphite around the painting.  It actually becomes  loaded with graphite and you can either clean or use it like a brush of sorts.  Always a tug of war adding and sub…

So Big acrylic little boy

Ok, got off the snide here and actually did some painting.  This reference photo, when I saw it,  reminded me of when I was little and wanted to be bigger.  Seemed like there was always something I couldn't do because I was little.    Did your parents have a door jam that they measured your growth on?
This picture was inspired by a video by Cinnamon Clooney, she is painting some tribute pictures to Holly Hobbie.   Hers are all little girls in those straw hats.  While I always learn sometihng I don't like to do a piece exactly the same way, but will look for a reference where I can incorporate what I learned, but still have it be my piece.  So was a perfect way to combine doing a fun little piece.  
I also realize how far my art journey has come because I now don't hesitate if I have an incomplete photo reference.  I had to find an image of hands to add as the photographer from PMP actually cut the photo off at the elbows.  Where that used to throw me, now I just adapt!!  …

The Dance flamingo oil pastel study

Since it is freezing cold outside and my tendinitis is acting up it is a good day to stay inside.  For days now, I have been trying to clean and organize my art space, and, of course am turning up all kinds of things I didn't remember having, or just don't use.   Such is the case with the  materials used in this study.   It is a combination of color pencil, gelatos (sadly, not the ice cream kind) and oil pastels.  Funny, I have used and loved soft pastels for years.  I think maybe I have tried the oil pastels a couple of times, but for some reason it just never took. 
After working with the oil today, I really like the creamy texture of them, but you just can't get sharp detail.   And, maybe that is a good thing and the point of it all.  You just can't get bogged down.  
When I saw the reference photo I really was attracted to the wonderful neck shapes and the unusual orange colors on these flamingos.   They say the color depends on what they eat, so I guess you could…

Organization Tip

Ok, it rained all day yesterday, another 1+inches and now it is windy and so cold - so what's a girl to do?  This is one of the times a year that I give my art space a deep cleaning.  I also always get the itch about this time that "this year" I am going to get really organized so my space doesn't get so junked up.  So here are some of my projects.

I was very fortunate and gifted some art supplies, mostly pens, pencils and markers, a few weeks ago.   Good news is lots of new toys, bad news is they are just sitting around, either loose or in their plastic baggies they came in,  as I really had not organized a place to put them.  I have been storing my drawing pencils in round containers, CP in coffee containers that hang over my desk, markers are in the shoe boxes that my running shoes come in because they have a lid.  But I still can never find the right hardness of pencils, marker colors, etc. - so it is really time to figure out a way to make it work.

I still have…

Flower Maiden Pen/Ink Drawing woman portrait

I have a tendency to be slow to try new things, especially those that I think are difficult or scare me.  That is one of the reasons I wanted to take my portrait course this year as I thought that it might help get me out of a rut.  So off to do another pen portrait and felt a lot more comfortable this time around.  In fact, took a few more liberties.  I have really enjoyed working in mixed media, and this is another example.  
I was pleased with the result of the pen drawing I did for my second week's lesson.  So decided to do another portrait using that technique, two pens in the initial layer, but not on the face itself.  I added additional colors of ballpoint inks and took off.  I did end up at the end and added a bit of pastel to try to help some of the transition areas between where I have ink strokes going onto the white paper.  Just not able to get pen light enough that I don't see the end points if I am blending back into the white of the paper.  I really like how th…

Girls Portrait ballpoint pen

Google is still now allowing me to reply on comments - I don't know why, have tried everything - sorry, I do read and enjoy everything you write, honest!!
Well this is my second lesson and I wanted to get shaken out of my comfort zone.   Well, this one sure the heck did that.  Ballpoint pen - ekkkk!!!  pen, you can't erase, you are just stuck with the mistakes.   There is a huge one, can you find it?
Anyway, the teacher, Joan Martin, from South Africa, uses ballpoint pens to do a lot of her portraits.   When I say penS, I mean pens.  She uses 2 pens, one in each hand, and for the beginning of the portrait, she has the left hand follow her dominant right hand.   I thought, no way.   But it turns out it is a bit easier than I expected.   I also have watched Stefan Baumann where he also recommends you draw in your sketchbook with your left hand every five studies or doodles.  He claims it helps you draw better overall with your dominant hand and eye coordination.
Anyway, what do …

The Rose acrylic figure study

I have been working on figure drawing and found a website where it has very plain backgrounds, so it has been my challenge to try to do something that would make it more interesting.  When I saw this dress the first thing I thought of was a rose.  Of course the girl's expression is very dramatic as well, so I really liked the aspect of the story.

I have tried to paint roses in the past and have to say without a whole lot of success.  But I felt I needed the background roses to help depict in the viewers mind that the girl is a rose (notice, no thorns)  I have to say that I decided to just paint shapes and mixed about four different reds and am pretty pleased with the results.  I went with the bokeh background again as I think it added some interested and allows for pops of life and there is no wrong in where you put the circles or the size of the circles.

Thanks much for stopping by and taking a look.

Did I save it? Study of Prince Charming

Well today's project was quite an adventure.  It turns out that I was pretty disappointed when I saw the results of the first part of the experiment.  That awful background looking thing was a combination of powdered graphite that I tried turps and OMS splatters to try to get some interesting organic looking results.   Well, as you can see I pretty much ended up with the black blobs.
 But I decided that I wasn't going to throw out this piece is bristol board and would try to see if I could salvage anything from it.   I started out going for a women in a hood and somehow I think it ended up pretty masculine - you can still see the hood off to the back of his head.  Anyway, decided I would call him "Prince Charming" with all that hair.

So while I wouldn't call this an A, I'll give myself at least a break because I finished it.  Ended up using more powdered graphite, regular graphite pencils and pulled out the black pan pastel to try to get some deeper dar…

Pencil portrait study

This study is the first lesson in my Lets Face It online course.   And already it has lived up to the idea of introducing you to new things and encouraging you to try new things.  While I have used pencils for quite a while, I never ventured into powdered graphite.  I finally figured out the layering techniques and working from the H pencil ranges to the B pencils ranges.  I know too, that at some point, especially when you get into 6B or 8B pencils, you start to create lots of graphite shine.  But I did forget to get smooth you have to build up layers, and I wasn't really patient enough.  Thank good for toilet tissue.
I have been working with charcoal, so going back to the pencil was a bit of a challenge.  Charcoal is simpler, darker and much quickly.  I wanted both smooth and dark and that was something not easily accomplished.  The teacher was frustrated as well to be using pencils, she primarily is a painter.  So trying to get some of the darks the teacher used the powdered g…

Sideways Glance charcoal drawing of girl

We have had so much gray/rain, that well, today we have something that looks like blue and a yellow/orange ball in the sky.  Not sure what the heck it is!!

Well, since it has been so extra cold and rainy here I decided to utilize what old people get as part of their Medicare Advantage Plan - Silver Sneakers.  So I am heading back to the gym, been a long time since I did the gym actually using the machines and weights, not doing classes.  Actually I was there before the end of the year and am seeing all the "resolution" people flooding the gym.   I heard that resolutions only last until around 1/12 - so will be interested to see how quickly it empties out.   Anyway, I really need to stretch and build flexibility, since I walk so much I am not necessarily all about cardio although got to say it is nice to use the treadmill or elliptical on rain days.  I decided to try and focus on the stability ball.  Needless to say, any muscles you don't use do mean "sore" fo…

Energy acrylic figure study skateboarder

Hello from soggy Georgia.   Another inch of rain, more to come tomorrow, and water just standing in the streets, grass and everywhere.  So, decided I would try playing with some toys I don't usually use.  
The pipe was done using the sponge technique.  The scribbling white lines with a fineliner that I am trying to get the feeling for.  You squeeze really hard but not much comes out, and then it does!!  I wanted to have one for white and one for black as I thought it would be terrific for doing whiskers and fine line details that I always struggle with for color pencil, pastel, acrylics.  Anyway, I probably got a little carried away but it does help the allusion to energy cracking around this figure.
This is a figure study, inspiration started from my daily sketch site of a skateboarder, but ended using using a pixabay reference as I wanted a more active pose.  Changed up the shirt color, added dreadlocks for the hair so they could fly and added the energy aura around him.  

Zoey mixed media dog portrait

First piece of 2019 - Zoey is a friend's fur baby and she was kind enough to allow me to give her a try.  This started as a collage piece, then ended up mixed media.  Got newsprint under the dog, napkins as the colorful pieces and a bit of acrylic and pastel for finishing touches.

Thanks much for stopping by and taking a look.