Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Gilded Cage - Watercolor and Ink - 2.5" X 3.5"


I started playing around with these little illustration board trading cards by just leaving them on the coffee table, and this is one of the doodles that emerged. I have a full set of inks, though I only use the blacks and browns, so I thought this might be a good opportunity to play with them more. The result is pretty, but not something I want to keep doing. The colors are just too bright and if I'm going to mix inks to tone them down, then I'll just use paint and a very fine liner brush.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Fighting Fairy Bookmark



I had some scrap illustration board laying around (1" X 6" or thereabouts) and sketched this out one night while watching the boyfriend play video games. I'd been toying around with different borders, fairy wings, and flowers, so it all came together in this one. I left it on the coffee table for about a week and worked on it a little here and there, not bothering to erase the sketch as I painted it (watercolor). I kinda like the look that resulted.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

"Defiance" Color Pencil on Paper 18" X 24"

"Defiance." Formerly known as "Egg Stealing Bitch" among my friends. Color Pencil on paper 18" X "24". This one was inspired by and intense loneliness I felt after moving to Dallas in 2008. I had Amanda Palmer's first solo album "Who Killed Amanda Palmer" on repeat and spent about a month that fall doing nothing but drawing every morning before work and every night after work. 

Now, rather than loneliness, this one reminds me of change - both in my personal life and in the seasons. Later, it went on to win the "On My Own Time" art contest in 2012 sponsored by the Dallas Business Council for the Arts.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

"The Snautilus." Watercolor on paper. 12" X 12"


I went to a workshop at DragonCon in 2013 hosted by the amazing Omar Rayyan. He started with a blank sheet of paper, a tiny jelly jar from breakfast filled with water, a homemade pallet of watercolors, and an assortment of fine-point brushes. In four hours, he painted a man with a turtle for a hat. It was marvelous and he did absolutely no sketching ahead of time. He simply used layers and layers of dilute paint to first set up the form then work in the details. 

I was so inspired, I came home and cranked out this guy (in more than four hours) using the same technique. It was an interesting exercise, but I found it was easy to let the painting get ahead of me and loose focus. In the end, I loved my Snautilus, his Octobutler, and his cuddlefish dessert, but grew impatient (a theme, really) and rushed the background since I really hadn't thought much of the composition before I started it. After this guy, I went back to my usual sketching-first approach. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

"Fantasy" Watercolor on Illustration Board 20" X 30"


It's once again time for the annual On My Own Time art show/competition hosted by the Dallas Business Council for the Arts. This is my submission this year to the amateur works on paper category. I started the sketch on a flight from Dallas to Chicago in February 2013, and the stewardesses just loved watching the pair take shape. For once, I had no shortage of beverages during a flight! When I got back home, I inked it for posterity (using a stylus and pot of ink the old school way) then transferred it to a much larger piece of illustration board. 

The thing took forever to paint and I'm notoriously flighty when it comes to any endeavor, so I rushed at the end to finish it and in hindsight, I feel I goofed her face. Lesson learned. With watercolors, you can never go back. You must learn to face and accept your poor decisions. I have also learned that I do better in oils, but more of that in later posts.