Mar 30, 2010

A 26 Bird Day (card) and an 'Inspiration Cloud'

here are a few things I've been working on lately.

The first is a drawing for a friend of mine who said she enjoys my doodles.
I've left the 'cloud' empty so that she can fill it with a word or phrase that is joyful, inspirational (or fun and silly) to her.

"Inspiration Cloud"
ink, markers

I've also been working on a birthday card for my younger brother who turns 26 this week (I'm, like, totally late).
My family has a pretty wacky sense of humour and so I think he'll get a kick out of this weird card.



text reads:

"Humphrey had That Feeling again.
He looked outside and,
sure enough,
it was a 26 bird day."

(play on 26th birthday)
My bro's name is not Humphrey - I just chose that because it has such a wacky sound to me :-)

I like doing things uneven on purpose because I find 'even' really hard to do.
I used a gluestick for one part of the card but it warped a bit so I used double-sided tape for the rest.
I'm not the greatest at drawing realistically and was daunted at actually drawing 26 little bird without messing up but it turned out alright.

Mar 24, 2010

Altered Page with soy wax resist

I fell in love with altered pages at the wonderful, rich, joyful and delicious blog Raven Moon Magic via her Paper Moon work.

As always, I am held back from trying new things by my need to 'get it right' on the first try.
I've been trying very hard to get past this limitation and succeeded in this case.
I tried my first altered page recently and did all sorts of things 'wrong' but it made for a great learning experience.

I kept feeling like I 'should' add something more to all of the empty space but nothing is coming to me and I really love the way it looks as is so I am leaving it alone :-)

One of the things I did 'wrong' was to not bother taping the page down evenly.  I will make sure to do that in the future.

1.  if you will be using any wet medium on the page, use a book that has thicker pages
2.  tape it down using painters tape
3.  do not remove tape until page is entirely dry.  this will make the page less wobbly or warped from the moisture.
4.  remove page from book carefully (another thing I didn't do well :)
5.  you don't need to use a wax resist to bring out the words - I just preferred that because then I could paint at will and not worry about going carefully around the words
6.  pick words based on what you are drawn to - NOT what 'makes sense'!
7.  the words do not have to tie in with the painting in an obvious way
8.  if using watercolour paint, you can either do the painting first and pick words later - removing the paint over those words with water, or you can pick the words first and do the painting after.  You can see an example of how this will look by the moon in the upper right corner of this piece - the colour was removed after painting. 
*note* some stain will remain.

Mar 23, 2010

Spring Flower Collage

I haven't been posting much though I've been doing a lot artistically... and craftily ;-)

Here's a photo of a collage I did a few weeks ago when it finally began to feel like spring would come to southern Ontario!

Normally I'm very perfectionist about collage (and art in general) but with this one I tried to let myself go and not worry about it being 'perfect'.

Mar 15, 2010

Using wax as a 'resist' in watercolour paintings

I've not been posting much but have been daily drawing, colouring, painting and more.☺

I've tried a number of different waxes as a 'resist' to use with watercolour paints.

So far, crayons did not work well, beeswax worked okay but is very hard and needs to be scraped down after application or it kind of flakes on top and doesn't resist well.
My favourite wax so far is soy wax. I had some around in the form of run off from a soy wax candle and  it works wonderfully!
Soy wax is very soft compared to beeswax and it glides onto the paper nicely without heavy pressure.
The resist does still work best if the wax is pressed down after application - I do this by running the flat back of my thumbnail over it but one could use any flat, hard object that would not damage the paper.

You can use wax directly on the white paper so that the wax lines will show up white (or whatever colour your paper is).  That's what I've done here with the front and back of a bookmark:

or, if you have the patience, you can paint a layer of lighter colour, wait for it to dry (or use a hair dryer on low - keep it moving to avoid scorching the paper), then use the wax over top.  Then you can paint overtop with darker paint colours like I did with the back piece of a page that is destined to be cut up into whimsical bookmarks (squiggly side is back piece done with the lighter and darker paint method, spiral piece is done with the wax directly on the unpainted paper):

Another thing you can do with wax and watercolour is a bit more complicated but tons of fun.
You can draw on the paper first with markers or coloured pens, go over the marker with wax, then use just plain water on a brush to pick up any marker not covered by wax (dab with paper towel if needed), then paint.  If the markers are waterproof such as Sharpies etc, you don't need to to the stage of picking up excess marker with water.
If they are water soluble markers, this stage is necessary unless you don't mind ending up with muddied, icky colours when you paint - the marker colour will mix with your watercolour paint. (I found that out the hard way :-)

a few examples of playing around with that technique:

Space Cucumber Ship
watercolour, marker, beeswax
If you try this out and post on your site/blog, I'd love if you post links in the comments area!  I'd love to see what others do with this.

Mar 8, 2010

Joy drawing - with colour!

I am really loving this playful drawing now that I've added more to it and coloured it in.

Find What Brings You Joy
ink, markers, pencil crayons

Mar 3, 2010

Find What Brings You Joy drawing

Shifting my focus to the things that bring me joy has been an essential part of my healing journey.
I did this drawing last week with a fountain pen and waterproof ink and plan to colour it with markers soon :-)  I may end up doodling in it more as well.

Find What Brings You Joy...
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