Piglet – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcard. Brush: Rosemary & Co R12 Pocket Dagger Brush. Photo courtesy of Gellinger on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Piglet

Did you know that pigs prefer to sleep nose to nose with each other?

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Joseph Zbukvic Watercolor Set No.1 Set of 3 Fine Artist Paint Brushes

 

 

Crinoid Limestone


Artwork: Zebra Pen ClickArt Retractable Marker Pen in a Hahnemühle Cappuccino sketchbook. Reference photo courtesy of glaciergary on Pixabay.

#Hahnemühle_USA #ZebraPen_USA #ZebraAmbassador

Doodlewash prompt: Limes. I’m being tricky again and drew a picture of limestone with crinoid (sea lilies, starfish, urchins, etc) fossils instead of limes.

Did you know that the Colosseum, the Sphinx, and many of the pyramids were built with limestone?

Squirrel Kit – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcard. Brush: Rosemary & Co R12 Pocket Dagger Brush. Photo courtesy of Alexas_Fotos on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Squirrel

Did you know that squirrels have been known to chew shed rattlesnake skin, then lick their fur so their scent would be hidden from predators?

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Rosemary & Co R12 Pocket Dagger Brush

 

 

Cupcake – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcard. Brush: Joseph Zbukvic Size 10 Round

Sketchbook Revival Prompt: Cupcake

For some reason the Amazon search feature isn’t bringing up Charlie O’Shields new Sketching Stuff Activity Book: Food. You can find the link to it at his podcast site.

It’s the first day of the Sketchbook Revival Online Workshop! Two free art videos every day and a Facebook group to share your efforts. Today there are videos from Carla Sondheim & Charlie O’Shields! If you’ve already joined check your mailbox. If you haven’t, go to the Sketchbook Revival sign-up page.

Did you know that originally cupcakes were covered in Lard? Winston Churchill started the custom of icing them instead. Thank you, Winston!

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Joseph Zbukvic Watercolor Set No.1 Set of 3 Fine Artist Paint Brushes

 

Something Green on Lilac


Artwork done with Zebra Pen’s cool new ClickArt Retractable Marker Pen & Kirarich Glitter Highlighters in a Hahnemühle Lilac 1584 sketchbook#Hahnemühle_USA #ZebraPen_USA #ZebraAmbassador

Doodlewash prompt: Something Green

Japanese Robin – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcard. Brush: Rosemary & Co R12 Pocket Dagger Brush. Photo courtesy of Kaz on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Songbird

Did you know that every continent has its own species of Robin?

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Rosemary & Co R12 Pocket Dagger Brush

 

Selkirk Rex – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Rough Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Jack Richeson Richeson Grey Matters Synthetic Watercolor Flat 1/4 Photo courtesy of athree23 on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Lilac

In the world of cat shows, there is a pale grey color of fur that is called Lilac. I didn’t even try to be exact since I don’t have a real-life model, and have only seen the color once, years ago.

The model in my reference photo is a Selkirk Rex, a fairly recent breed noted for it’s long, curly hair.

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Daniel Smith watercolor:

Jack Richeson Richeson Grey Matters Synthetic Watercolor Flat 1/4

 

 

Leaves of Living Stone


Artwork: Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor in a Hahnemühle Nostalgie Sketchbook. Brush: Escoda Perla Round size 8, 10 and 12. Reference photo courtesy of derevv on Pixabay.

Doodlewash Prompt: Leaves

Lithiops are a succulent plant with leaves that look like pebbles, camouflage so that animals won’t eat them during the droughts of Southern Africa. They are called Living Stones, although they are totally plants.

Tools

Hahnemühle Nostalgie Book (review).

Daniel Smith Watercolor:

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Joseph Zbukvic Watercolor Set No.1 Set of 3 Fine Artist Paint Brushes

Peacock – Pencil to Paint Tutorial


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard.

This painting is what is known as a ‘line and wash’ because it is drawn in pen first and then painted with watercolor.

Before You Start

I had a difficult choice to make with this painting.

Reference photo courtesy of AvinaCeleste on Pixabay.

Did I want to focus on the beautiful detail? Or did I want to capture the beautiful flow of the feathers overall?

I decided I wanted the flow, and started thinking of waysto meet the challenge of fitting the entire bird on a postcard.

Right off, I knew that I needed to avoid too much detail. We tend to focus on faces, even with animals, and it was going to be small in this painting.

Pencil

(This scan is darkened so you can see the pencil lines. You should pencil lines in lightly)

I spent far more time with my pencil drawing than I usually do, deciding what details I wanted, and how to fit it into the small size.

If you’ve ever studied drawing, you have probably come across the idea of *blind contour drawing. Many people don’t see the value, feeling you can’t possibly draw anything worth while.

This is the kind of drawing that makes it worth while. If you do it enough, you can keep your eye on the reference, only glancing down ever so often to make sure you aren’t too far from where you should be.

I drew the outline of the whole bird first to get the overall size and fit to the card. Then I drew the sections for the head, shoulders, back and wings

Then I drew the sections of the tail using the blind contour method, moving back and forth. I did look at the paper each time I reached the side of the bird and needed to move down to the next section. That meant I could look at the paper fairly often, and could easily keep track of where I was. It also kept me focused on the flow of the feathers rather than the detail.

Once I had all this established, I drew in some of the feathery eyes and a little bit of shading to help guide my eye during the pen drawing.

*Blind contour drawing is done by looking at your reference and drawing without looking down at the paper.

Not sure if you’re up to drawing this? Art Tutor has a great grid program that will help by applying a grid to your uploaded photo. You can also crop and adjust color and value.

Pen

The pen drawing was mostly following the pencil, though if you look close, you’ll see that I didn’t follow it exactly. I wasn’t using the blind contour method at this point because I already had my ‘mapping’ done

Having sketched if first, it was easier to see everything the second time, and I made adjustments as needed.

The main difference was that I picked out some of the darkest values and added the texture of some of the feathers. Except for the head and shoulders, I kept my values pretty light. At this size, anything that is overly dark is going to stand out like a beacon.

I decided the background would need to add balance for two issues. The peacock created a strong vertical stripe and to make it worse, I placed it directly in the middle of the card (too busy paying attention to the detail, darn it!). I wanted to add some horizontal detail, and have more of it on the left than on the right, to make it look like the composition was less centered.

A good part of drawing and painting is lying. But then our eyes and brain lie to us all the time so life follows art, right?

Values= dark to light. When you establish your values, you are deciding where the darkest areas are, and some of the important mid-tones.

Paint

I had just found a palette where I had collected various brands of paint, and then never used any, after that, so purely on a whim, I decided that was the palette I would use. Why not add extra difficulty to an already challenging project, lol?

Actually, there was a little logic to this madness. The palette had some shiny colors with mica. It doesn’t show up in the photos but this peacock’s feathers do shimmer.

I started with a light wash of Prussian Blue. While the first layer was still damp, I added a thicker wash of the same color to the back, letting it blend in. At this point, I was done with the head, neck and back.

I used Hematite (because it was a shiny gray) for the wings and wall. I started working on the background because I wanted to make sure it was well-integrated with bird. Working back and forth between bird and background made it less likely I’d overdo either at any point.

Leaf green was used along the tail. Quinacridone gold and an unidentified green were blended on the paper, for the foliage and I continued with the gold for the sky. I choose this sky color because it makes the Prussian Blue pop and helps keep the small head and back the focus of the painting.

I used a shiny handmade watercolor from Aquanut – Cosmic Turquoise – for the darker areas of the feathers, working some into the wings as well.

A little Quin Gold was used to warm up the top of the wall. A wash of Ultramarine Violet Deep covered the rest. I let the color fade towards the bottom to balance it with the lighter color at the top. Schmincke Neutral tint has a brownish cast and I used it for shading on the wall and worked it into the bottom of the foliage.

More leaf green was added to the eyes and foliage.

I should have taken another scan at this point but forgot. Sorry.

The last step was to lighten areas of the tail feathers and along the wall by lifting color, and letting some of the under color show through.

After Thoughts

If I were to do this again there are definite changes I would make. I would pay more attention to where I placed the bird so that it wasn’t in the middle.

I would have started the wall just slightly above the wings and made it slightly lower on one side, because I think that would have given the painting a better balance.

I’d choose a different palette. I’m not unhappy with the colors I used, but I know I could have made it better yet.

Tools

And where you can buy them

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review)