Tutorial – How to Draw a Giant Alium


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Miya Himi Gouache on Hahnemühle Harmony Cold Press Watercolor Paper

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This is a repeat of the Giant Alium step-out. I’ve updated the text, added a Close-up Alium step-out, a new example painting, and a video.

Giant Aliums are fun because they are essentially colorful fuzzy balls on long sticks with triangular leaves.

In the distance, you can’t see that aliums are made up of tiny petals, which I’ll call florets.

If you want to increase your sense of distance, use the Close-up Alium for the nearest flowers and then leave the other flowers solid, with a little shading to indicate roundness.

Or just make it easy and have all your flowers solid with shading.

Artwork: Zebra Pen Funwari Color brush, Zensations colored pencil and Derwent White Graphik Line Painter in a Stillman & Birn Beige-Tone sketchbook. I do NOT recommend the Graphik Line Painters because they blob.

Hahnemühle Hand Lettering Pad  (review)

Full list of Fun & Easy Step-outs

Want to share your Fun & Landscapes?  Join the Fun & Easy Landscape Facebook Group!

The Queen’s Magic


Artwork-Blue Tea, Zebra Pen Technical Pen, PM-701 Permanent Marker and Sarasa Metallic Clip pens in a Hahnemühle Report and Art book

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I’ve been drinking a lot of blue tea lately, so you can expect to see lots of tea-toned paper in blue.

The Hahnemühle Report & Book is one of my favorite sketchbooks. It isn’t formulated for watercolor, but the paper is heavy enough to wet thoroughly and still hold up to pen or whatever else you want to use on it. I did put a piece of plastic acetate underneath to keep the blue tea from staining everything.

This time I just swiped the tea bag across the page for an overall blue tone without letting the bag or the peaflowers sit on the paper to leave shapes.

Nonetheless, the Queen appeared on the page after a bit of study and I doodled on from there with technical pen, permanent marker and metallic brush pens.

Wanna buy some of the cool toys I used?

Hahnemühle Report & Art books (review)

Zensations Technical pens (review)

Zebra PM-701 Stainless Steel Permanent Marker

Zebra Sarasa Clip 1.0, 9 Shiny / Metallic Color Set 

Dried butterfly pea flower tea

Bubbles & Coins Bleedthrumanade


If you are looking for the Life Imitates Doodles Weekly Wednesday Giveaway #13 , you can find it here.

Front – Zebra Pen PM-701, Zensations Colored Pencil & Technical Pen and white gel pen over watercolor on a Hahnemühle YouTangle Tile.

I painted the front of my YouTangle tile with watercolor, and sprayed it heavily so the color would bleed through to the back of the paper. Once the color dried, I used the PM-701 permanent marker and technical pen to draw the lines, then used color pencil to define the bubbles and soften color all over. I finished with white gel pen for the highlights.

Then I turned the paper over and drew these coins with technical pen. I used brush pens to add the color and lines. I used a waterbrush on the Metallic brush color for the coins.

Back – Zebra Pen Zensations Technical Pen, Color Brush & Metallic Color Brush over bleed-thru color on a Hahnemühle YouTangle Tile.

Wanna buy some of these cool toys now?

Hahnemühle YouTangle Tiles (you can find my review here).

Zensations Technical pens (you can find my review here)

Zensations Mechanical Colored Pencils 24Pk

Idunna’s Gryphon – an ATC Humgryphon


The Weekly Wednesday Giveaway for this week ends at 11:59 PST tonight!

Before I got into Zentangle, I was into ATC’s and I was as obsessed with that too. I don’t do them anymore preferring to work larger.

I had a method of painting with acrylic, and then drawing with an India Ink Pitt Brush pen to mix the color. The result looked a lot like oils.

This little humgriffin has always been one of my favorites. Actually, he’d probably count as an Alebrijes, except that I wrote a story for him and it involves the Norse gods. As I recall, I did this as part of a challenge, but I can’t remember anything about it.

Artwork Ceramcoat metallic acrylics; tube acrylics; Pitt Brush Pen on Strathmore illustration board.

Here’s the story that explains the humgriffon: Idunna’s Gryphon

Idunna, the Norse Goddess was picking out the ripest of her golden
apples one morning, when a gryphon flew over her garden. She was
enraptured, and desired a gryphon as her own pet. She was worried,
though, that such a large beast would destroy her garden.

This was in the days before Loki became the enemy of the gods, and he
loved Idunna for her sweet nature. He thought long and hard about
her wish for a gryphon, and finally came up with a plan.

He placed a dead fish in her garden and laced it with nectar to lure
both a cat and hummingbird. When one of each had arrived, he spoke
with a golden tongue, hypnotic and compelling. The hummingbird was
convinced that the cat was a bird, and the cat believed the bird was
feline. They fell in love and mated and from their mating was born a
tiny beast of the gryphon kind, with a hummingbird’ s head, and the body
of a kitten.

Now it flies around Idunna’s garden, a bright jewel among the flowers.