A Proliferation of Whiskers – Pencil to Paint Tutorial


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen, QoR watercolor and White Signo Uniball gel pen on a Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Princeton Elite Travel Round size 10.

Did you know that a walrus can eat 4,000 – 6,000 clams in one sitting?

Doodlewash prompt ‘walrus’.

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

Photo courtesy of skeeze on Pixabay 

What drew me to the reference photo was that wild stare and the whiskers, so I knew I wanted to focus on that. I also wanted to capture that splotchiness of color but I didn’t want it to compete with the focus on the stare/whiskers.

I first considered using a rough postcard, but decided it was the wrong kind of texture, and went with a cold-pressed postcard instead.

Pencil

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

The shapes in this painting are simple so I free-handed it. Notice how the folds of the walrus’s body tend to echo each other. Vertically, the tusks, the separation of face and body, and eye and body all have a similar flow. The same thing with the top lip, the back of the head and the folds along the back.

This very sketchy pencil drawing was used to place detail and to make sure everything fit on the card. I didn’t bother with the whiskers. They’re too much fussy detail and too easy to place to bother with at this point.

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

Although there is a lot of texture in the walrus’ skin, I decided to minimize that, making everything subordinate to the whiskers and eye (though the shapes are simple, this walrus could be painted in many different ways). At this step, I established my values*, drew the outline and spent a lot of time on the whiskers.

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 did a light wash of Quinacridone Magenta over the entire Walrus, and then I dabbed a light wash of Nickel Azo Yellow over the whisker and nose area, then Transparent Pyrrole Orange around the nose, the lip and the folds around the head and neck. By ‘dabbed’, I mean I bounced the brush up and down, sometimes using the tip and sometimes the side of the brush.

Using dabbing motions again, Dioxine Purple was splashed over most of the walrus. I dropped burnt sienna here and there in shaded areas. When the paint was dry, I did some dry brushing with a hint of the purple for texture.

Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine Blue were mixed half & half for the darkest value under the eye and whiskers. I thinned it with more water and painted in the areas between the whiskers.

Using the side of my round brush, the ripples of water were done with Phthalo Blue GS and Sap Green was dropped in while the blue was still quite wet. With a dry brush, I picked up just a little of the color from the water and used it to shade the tusks.

Once that dried, I used a White Signo Uniball gel pen to highlight the top layer of whiskers, and added a few dots along the snout and around the eye.

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review).

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

QOR Watercolor Half Pan Set of 12 Ultimate Mixing Set   (review)

Princeton Aqua Elite Series 4850 Synthetic Kolinsky Sable Round, Size 10

White Uniball Signo Gel Pens

 

Chocolate Labrador Retriever Puppy – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and Daniel Smith watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Escoda Aquario Petit Gris Mop, Series 1130 Size 12 . Photo courtesy of Pezibear on Pixabay.

Did you know, that until 1960, the only color considered desirable for Labrador Retriever’s was black.? But black labs carry the chocolate, yellow and silver genes so they kept popping up, and they’re beautiful, so eventually the dog world wised up and all these colors are popular and bred for, these days.

Doodlewash prompt ‘chocolate’.

I don’t use many browns other than burnt sienna and occasionally a little burnt umber. I tend to mix other colors with these two to get the brown I want or mix purple and greens. But I do love Daniel Smith’s Piemontite Genuine.

It pairs well with Lavender. The challenge for this painting was to get that sheen of a healthy dog’s coat and I think the two were perfect. I sort of regret painting this particular scene on a postcard. A larger size would have allowed me to play with the sheen and all the textures more easily. One of these days, I’ll have to paint it again.

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review).

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

DANIEL SMITH Extra Fine Watercolors 

Princeton Neptune Travel Brush, Series 4750, Round, Size 8

Fox Terrier – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and QoR watercolor on a Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Princeton Neptune Travel Round size 8. Photo courtesy of Pezibear on Pixabay.

Today, my hubby took a Fox Terrier in his lunchbag. Did you know that up until 1860, any dog small and fast enough to flush a fox out of his den was considered a fox terrier?

Doodlewash prompt ‘pets’.

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

QoR Watercolor Half Pan Set of 12   (review)

Princeton Neptune Travel Brush, Series 4750, Round, Size 8

 

Numbat – Postcards for the Lunch Bag


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen, QoR watercolor and White Signo Uniball gel pen on a Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Princeton Elite Travel Round size 10.

Numbat – I know. It sounds like something you’d call your brother or sister when you were kids. It wouldn’t be much of an insult though. Numbats are termite-eating eating marsupials from Australia.

They ARE a bit oddball – unlike other ant-eating species, they don’t dig and don’t have those usual big, nasty claws. And they don’t have pouches like other marsupials. So if that’s what you meant when calling names, you were right on. It’s still not much of an insult, because Numbats are cute enough to get away with it.

Tools

And Where You Can Buy Them

Hahnemühle Cold Press Watercolor Postcards (review).

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)

QOR Watercolor Half Pan Set of 12 Ultimate Mixing Set   (review)

Princeton Aqua Elite Series 4850 Synthetic Kolinsky Sable Round, Size 10

White Uniball Signo Gel Pens

 

Dinner at the Black Hole Diner – Tangle Drawing


Artwork – Zebra Zensations Technical Pen on Hahnemühle Nostalgie Postcard

I started this one while at the airport, waiting to come home from Florida. Airports always feel a little bit like a black hole to me, sucking all the energy from you – hence the title.

Since I got home, I’ve played hide and seek with it, finding it and adding a bit, losing it and finding it again. I’m convinced it was hiding out in that Black Hole!

Waiting – A Pencil to Paint Tutorial


Artwork-Zebra Zensations Technical Pen and watercolor on a Hahnemühle Rough Watercolor Postcard. Brushes: Princeton Aqua Elite Travel Brush Set, Series 4850 Synthetic Kolinsky 

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

Some paintings, you just start and go with the flow. But if you are using a reference, it is often best to think about what you like about it and how you might achieve it. Don’t stress, even if you don’t know for sure, it will help.

Did you know that dogs have a sense of time? It’s been scientifically proven.

Reference photo courtesy of Fran on Pixabay.

And what I wanted from this reference photo was that expression of patient waiting for something to happen. He knows it isn’t time yet.

I chose the Hahnemühle Rough Watercolor Postcard so that the texture would add to the dog’s wild ‘do!

Pencil

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

Even as he patiently waits, this guy is busy – all that hair and the big eyes and nose and the division of color. I did a little more pencil work than usual, to get a sense of what went where.

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

There’s a lot of penwork going on here and I thought I break things down a little more than I usually do.

Some of my penwork was done to establish values:

  • The lightest area, I leave the white of the paper.
  • For the lightest grey, I draw long even strokes.
  • The mid-grey at the bottom, I use long, even strokes that curve to the shape of the nose
  • The nostrils are the darkest part of the nose – I used tight, curling strokes, but still left space for the paint to show.

Some of my penwork was done to establish length and direction of the fur.

For long hair:

  • I used long strokes that curve in the direction of the hair – they’re pretty wild, because the hair is
  • I’m sneaking in some values too – I darken some areas
    • where the hair separates
    • where the hair casts shade

For shorter hair:

  • I use strokes of varying length – more evenly than the long hair strokes
  • For value, I just add more strokes where it is darkest

For texture:

  • I use swirling lines – very loosely – to imply the texture of the carpet.
  • The lines follow the direction of the nap.

White Tail Saki – Pencil to Paint Tutorial


Artwork- Zebra Zensations Technical pens and Daniel Smith Watercolor on Hahnemühle Cold Pressed Watercolor Postcard. Photo reference from A_Different_Perspective on Pixabay.

This is the last of my lost and found postcards, along with Sunday’s caracal cat, and Monday’s Sheep. So details will be sparse because I can’t remember that far back.

The White Tail Saki monkey of South America weighs about three pounds. This is a painting of a male. The females are lighter, and have bright strips of hair from eyes to chins. 

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 didn’t take enough time before I started this card. I was getting ready for my trip to Florida and painting cards ahead so hubby would have them for his lunchbag while I was gone (then I mislaid them – cheesh!)

No painting is a waste of time, though. I know why this one didn’t come out the way I wanted it too. And that happened before I even began.

Usually, I look at my reference, and think how I might create the values, the textures and the colors, I’m seeing. These days, it only takes me a few minutes, and I know which palette I’ll choose and the brushes I’ll use. But those few minutes are probably the most important in the entire painting.

I’m not really satisfied with the way this painting came out. NOT BASHING! Just not totally satisfied. And this is the step where I went wrong.

Pencil

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

Another reason I can tell that I rushed through the beginning stages of this painting is because my pencil sketch is really minimal-even more so than usual. Mostly I made sure it fit the postcard and placed the facial details and foot. That’s all that is really needed, though.

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

With all the fur going every which way, it can be hard to figure out what’s fur and what’s foot, arm, leg or hand. I tried to get away with the direction of the fur, and a little value.

I would have been happier if I had decided to go all fur and merely suggest the arms or been much more detailed and really worked on getting my values correct.

Paint

I like the background to this painting much more than I like the monkey. It’s pretty abstract as my backgrounds often are. I used negative painting in places and lifted color in places to create the feeling of foliage.

I have to guess at the colors, but I’m pretty sure these are the ones used.

There is a red in there too, but I’m not sure if I used Burnt Sienna (most likely) or Tranparent Red Oxide.

Want to know more about the Tools?

Hahnemühle Postcards (review)

Zebra Zensations Technical pens (review)