Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Chiaroscuro Lion

This is my first chiaroscuro. It was done for my online sketching class. It was fun and now I'm eager to try another one, but I'll wait for Kate's critique as I'm not sure this is correct.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Young Koala The wonderful photo for this young koala was taken by Susan at http://www.flickr.com/photos/tiger_empress/ who so graciously gave me permission to sketch this little cutie! He/she is now sleeping on his own, without the arms of mama around him. Thank you, Susan! Your photos are SUPERB!!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Koala Mama and Baby Sleeping

Isn't this just the cutest pose! I found the reference photo on Yotophoto and couldn't resist drawing it. This is still a work for lesson 2 -- I drew upside down again (LOVE that method!!), plus there were some negative spaces that I watched for and measured against, I used a variety of ways of holding the pencil, and blended in a circular motion using a tortillon to get the look of dense fur.

Friday, November 17, 2006


This was drawn upside down - no, I wasn't upside down, the photo reference and my sketch pad were upside down. The object of this lesson 2 exercise is to train one to draw what is seen - not what the brain tells us something should look like. An excellent exercise to stimulate the eye/hand and bypass the brain. I found the photo reference on WetCanvas--such an excellent source for photos!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


I just love these little creatures! I'm so addicted to the Animal Planet show, "Meerkat Manor." LOL!! I found the reference photo in WetCanvas. This was originally done first as a sketch for my sketching class, then I added light watercolor. This was done in an Aquabee Sketch Pad and it's the first time I've used watercolor in it so I wasn't sure how well it would take water -- it did great, but I did work with a light touch and very little water. The original sketch was a practice with gesture sketching and also negative space (the triangular spaces within the legs). I'm still getting accustomed to my new scanner, the pigments on the meerkat came out pretty true, but the dead tree in the background has a little more detail in real life and the spatters on the foreground are more pronounced. For the spatters, I used watercolor pencils -- just dabbed some random dots and then used a wet brush on them. This technique worked pretty well! I didn't have to worry about getting spatters on the meerkat.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Yupo Sunflowers

My second Yupo experience. I drew the sunflowers with a rapidosketch fine point pen with permanent ink. The blue background is watercolor that I gently dabbed with a tissue for some texture before it was dry. The lighter version was done with Derwent Inktense Watercolor Pencils applied dry and gently blended with a wet brush. I thought it was too pale, so the darker version is where I added a layer of watercolor pigments. I was very careful with this layer as I wanted the lighter pencil pigments to show through.
Hibiscus On Yupo
Well this was fun!! I've seen some watercolor work done on Yupo on the WetCanvas site and have been quite intrigued with it. It is not paper at all, but plastic with an extremely smooth surface. It IS sold as "suitable for all watercolor techniques." Since it is plastic, the paint and/or water does NOT penetrate it - it just kind of floats around until it dries. If you don't like something, you just wipe it off with a tissue - ha. Of course, if you want it to last, a fixative would have to be used on the finished work. I bought my Yupo from Dick Blick, but it is available from other suppliers as well. Because I have a tendency to be the controller, this was really a step out of my comfort zone as the watercolor is the controller and I became the controllee. Some Wetcanvas tips I remembered as I was going along with this are 1) Do NOT touch the area you will be painting. Skin oil puts a protective shield on the plastic and the paint will not adhere--you can see the white areas on this where my fingers touched the surface, but it was a happy goof because I rather liked the splotches! 2) Lay down the paint and move it around with a brush, or tilt the paper this way and that and let it run 3) To layer, make sure undercoat is completely dry, with a light touch apply the next layer. Once liquid is applied, the undercoat will become liquid again so much care needs to be taken. 4) If you totally goof, wipe it clean with wet tissue, Qtip or just dunk it in the sink and completely wash it off. 5) Do NOT use a blowdryer to dry it - Yupo can and will melt. A blowdryer on cool setting would probably not melt it, but it might make the paint run in places you don't want it. All in all, this was quite a liberating experience for me and I am eager to try this Yupo with some other mediums--wonder how permanent ink sketching would look - hmmmm.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Morning Quiet Place

The November theme in Kate's alumni group is things we are thankful for. I have a chair in my living room where I read my bible and pray in the mornings. There are many objects in this painting that are symbolic for things I am thankful for in my life. I love America, I am so thankful I live in a country where I am free to own a bible and I am free to read it. I'm thankful that the word of God has been preserved for us and that the wisdom found in it pertain to all times, all generations and all situations. I'm thankful my husband shares my faith and respects my quiet place. I'm thankful I have raised my children and I no longer have to hurry through my morning quiet time. I'm thankful for electricity and while I love my oil lamp, I'm very thankful I don't have to rely upon it for light to read! I love the doily the lamp sits on and I am thankful for an aunt who taught me to crochet when I was 12 years old. One final note. . . the colors in this did not scan true, IRL the chair is a merlot color.