Posts Tagged ‘FIneArt’

09
Jan

The Daily ATC Challenge: Day 9

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The theme for day 9 of the ATC Challenge is: APPLES

In 20074 on tbis day, less than a decade ago, Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone. It’s incredible that something we consider so much a part of our daily lives is still so new! I feel like I’ve had my (android) smart phone for ages. In honor of that first iPhone, today is for creating apples be they drawn, painted, or sketched. Create a still life from an apple you’re having for lunch. Or sketch your phone. Or an Apple logo. Maybe cut up an apple and use the fruit itself to do some stamping!

Here’s what I came up with:

DailyATC9 pencils

Prismacolor colored pencils and graphite on that horrible cheap watercolor paper

DailyATC9 watercolor

PRANG watercolor on 140lb hot press watercolor paper

I haven’t used my Prismacolor pencils in ages and I enjoyed it. However, the paper was frustrating along with how the graphite outlines resisted the colored pencil. I suppose knowing that it resists now I could use that for effect though, so as usual, at least I learned something new! As for the Apple logo? I don’t love it, but I don’t hate it either. Photography was hard again due to the lack of natural light, but it was also complicated by the fact that my ATC is shiny. I put the paint on rather thickly so I could get it to drip, and I think that put on so thickly, it becomes shiny sort of like in the pans of paint in the box. This is the first time my cheap grade watercolors have failed me. In addition to the shiny paint fail, I’m not happy with my drips. I had a hard time getting it to drip at all so I blew on it which ended up making some more horizontal drips which wasn’t quite what I wanted. I love the drippy brightly colored watercolor portraits I’ve seen others do. It’s very far outside my style, but I figured I’d like to try it for a few of my ATCs. On this first drippy ATC, I’ve learned I must use higher quality paints if I want to put the paint on so thickly. I think the other solution would be to use more water so I get better dripping and don’t loose too much of the transparency of the paint.

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08
Jan

The Daily ATC Challenge: Day 8

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The theme for day 8 of the Daily ATC Challenge is: ALIENS!

Some of my early work involved hippie alien murals on my bedroom walls which were inspired by Space Aliens Grill & Bar. As such, I made mine a hippie alien! My background was an extension of the gradients from yesterday. I used a less transparent metallic watercolor also by PRANG for the alien’s skin to help obscure the background. Plus, who doesn’t love a slightly glittery alien?

DailyATC8 alien

watercolor and ink marker on cheap watercolor paper

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07
Jan

The Daily ATC Challenge: Day 7

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Dayy 7 of the Daily ATC Challenge will be a skill builder day. Let’s make GRADIENTS!

Any art that makes use of gradients is fair game. Here’s what I did, just some basic skill building bits, but definitely something I’ve learned from! I’ve also found it’s much harder to get nice photos when it’s too snowy to do my photography outside.

DailyATC7 pencil gradient

Assorted pencils on sketch pad paper

DailyATC7 watercolor gradient

PRANG watercolor on 140lb cold press paper

 

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06
Jan

The Daily ATC Challenge: Day 6

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Today’s theme is: RAIN DROPS

Today is supposed to be the last nice day for a while. We’ll be back to blustery days well below freezing in under 24 hours. Since today is a gorgeous open-the-windows sort of a day, all that snow and ice will invariably melt as it hits creating a very slippery ice layer underneath the later snow. Our theme is those melted drops of water just as the wintery precipitation starts.

DailyATC6 pencil

pencils on sketch paper

DailyATC6 watercolor

watercolor on 140lb cold press watercolor paper

I used the negative painting techniques demonstrated in this video by MyPetiteCakes on YouTube. I need more practice, but it was lovely to get to try out the technique I found a couple days ago while perusing videos about watercolor! I will definitely be doing both watercolor and acrylic galaxies sometime soon too. Those look like such fun!

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05
Jan

The Daily ATC Challenge: Day 5

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Day 4 of the ATC Challenge’s theme is: EAGLES (or your national bird)

Since today is National Bird Day in the USA, I’ll be doing eagle and bird inspired ATCs. Here’s what I came up with:
dailyATC5 eagle

permanent marker and watercolor on sketch paper

dailyATC5 feather

watercolor on hot press paper

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04
Jan

The ATC Challenge: Day 4

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Day 4 of the ATC Challenge’s theme is: SPACE EXPLORATION ROVERS

If it has wheels and it explores other-worldly landscapes, it’s fair game! Today’s theme is in honor of NASA’s Spirit rover landing on Mars on January 4, 2004. I’ll be wearing my NASA t-shirt all day and may have to watch some doctor who since The Martian, which I’m still itching to see, won’t be released until the 12th. Or maybe Guy Pal and I will finally get to go see Star Wars in IMAX! However you want to celebrate humanity’s baby steps out into our solar system today, get drawing, painting, or sketching a rover!

Here’s what I came up with:

IMG_4130

no. 2 0.5mm lead mechanical pencil on sketchpad paper

IMG_4129

PRANG watercolor on hot press watercolor paper

I’m tremendously pleased with both of these. They’re my favorite to date for the #dailyATC challenge. I ran out of space to get the rover’s wheels just right, but it’s still a very detailed yet fast and simple sketch of Spirit. While I’m not fond of the lettering which was inspired by the numbers on the clockface yesterday, the “T” at the end of “Spirit” did come out well and I’ll certainly draw capital T’s like that in the future. It’s a little thing, but it’s a step toward finding my style and becoming an all around better artist.

As for the painting? I love that one so much. I suspect I’ll end up doing a larger painting like it at some point. I love the cool sky contrasting the warm red planet. I enjoyed the watercolor washes to create the soft feeling backdrop for the little rover. While I wasn’t able to get the cracked dry landscape I wanted in this one, the rover tire treads give a great Opportunity (Spirit’s sibling, see what I did there?) to try adding more texture, some shadows and highlights really, to the martian dirt in the foreground. The rover in this painting almost feels like an afterthought when adding it in, particularly compared to the pencil sketch of Spirit, but I love it. Sure, it’s not the best tiny rover painting, but the effect it has on the overall composition just tickles me. Any beginner photography class or portrait sketching or painting class would point out that for a good composition the subject should be positioned so there is more space in front of them than behind. Although we likely cannot see what the subject is looking toward, having more space on their front feels more balanced and comfortable to the person viewing the image. I deliberately placed my rover against the edge of the composition so that we cannot see where he’s headed, only where he’s been. It’s getting pretty deep for a little doodle of an ATC, but I wanted to leave the viewer with the impression that there is so, so much more waiting for us as we explore our universe which we can only imagine.

I did not sign the painting as I feel that it would detract from the overall composition to add my mark. Sometimes on these little ATCs that’s just the way it is. If I were to leave it loose, I’d sign the back. Since it will be mounted in a book with my other dailyATCs, I’m not particularly worried!

 

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02
Jan

The ATC Challenge: Day 2

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Day 2’s theme for the ATC challenge is: TREES

Today is Ancestry Day in Haiti, so let’s create some trees, family trees or coconut trees. Autumn trees or blossoming cherry trees, just draw, sketch, paint or even work up a collage tree on your ATC for today! Here’s what I came up with.

dailyATC 2 palm tree

A palm tree near the ocean drawn with a standard no.2 mechanical pencil on smooth sketch paper.

dailyATC day 2 blossoming tree

 

A blossoming tree done with a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen and a smidge of some red-orange PRANG watercolor on the same sketch paper. I also did one on some watercolor paper, but I didn’t like the result nearly as much as my branches were a bit wonky.

 

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31
Dec

Daily Art Challenge!

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For Christmas I received a sketchbook with 500 drawing prompts. I love it and am working my way through it. As cool of an idea as this book is, it falls a bit short of what I want for daily artistic practice and inspiration.

  • I feel constrained by the variable size spaces given to each prompt.
  • I struggle working effectively with the spine in the way. I’ve only done two drawings in the book and already I’ve torn the first two pages away from the binding along the top of the spine.
  • The prompts are on both sides of the pages too so the graphite transfers between drawings. Since the paper is thin, you can also see the drawings through one another a bit. I can only imagine how much worse it would be if I were using ink!
  • The paper is not suitable for any wet media. I definitely need to work on my pencil drawings, but there really isn’t much in the way of media options for this book.

So that got me thinking, why can’t I do something better? And couldn’t it be free for everyone instead of requiring a specific sketchbook? Of course! For Inktober 2015, I used artist trading card size sheets of paper cut from some leftover cardstock I had. I loved working with that size sheet. It’s not too intimidating, and if I wrecked a page, oh well! It’s not like I’m throwing away good art supplies nor spending too much of my day laboring over a picture I’m just not really feeling, you know?

So that’s what I’ll do. Instead of just a month of ink sketches as for Inktober, I’m going to do a whole year of prompts. I’ll use ATC size sheets of whatever sort of paper or board is most appropriate to the media I want to use that day. There’s super heavy oil & acrylic canva-paper or just plain printer paper. There’s textured papers for charcoal and pastels and glossy smooth papers for markers.

Sketchbooks

Any paper, any media in an ATC-sized piece of artwork. The goal will be just to make a little bit of art every day for a year. To step outside our comfort zones. To practice our skills. To learn new ones. To stop hiding behind excuses and let loose the artist we all have inside, even if just for as little as 5 minutes a day. Stay tuned for the details tomorrow morning as we start a year of art! Each day will include a prompt to get you started thinking about what to do and a sample or two from Maple Wool Farm.

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