Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Diva Challenge #341, Travelling Tangles and thisclose to finishing my Inktober sketchbook...

Diva Challenge #341
"Go Big or Go Home"

This week's challenge is to work big. Bigger tile, bigger pattern, bigger tools. Any or all of the above.

I had previously prepared some eco printed tiles and happened to have one 4" square tile, not a big leap, but it's what I had with me. I used 08 gelly rolls, a .60 technical pen and Kuratake brush pen. Much much larger than my usual 01 and 005.
I liked the slightly larger format and the boldness of the larger nibs.

Travelling Tangles completed this week:

My finish...

...to this sweet start by Veena Arun

My finish...

...to another lovely start by Veena Arun

My finish...

...to this cute little  Bijou start by Kim Aarts Bruins

My finish...

...to this beauty by Susan Rink Olsen

Whew!!! Just two more to go and I'm caught up. I was already more behind than I'm comfortable with and then Inktober started and I was derailed.
I've almost completed the concertina sketchbook I made for Inktober and now pondering where to go next. I just ordered a Lamy Safari fountain pen on Amazon which seems to be the sketchbook artists pen of choice.

My home away from home;-)

My window seat

Late addition:

My Lamy Safari fountain pen just came in the mail!;-)

I spent my whole day off yesterday noodling around with my new pen. It came with a blue cartridge that I wanted to use up so I could fill it with the black Carbon ink (I got a converter too).
I've been working through some pen and ink drawing exercises from Alphonso Dunn's You Tube tutorials focusing on shadow and texture
When Joey's challenge first appeared I honestly didn't know how I was going to make this work and decided to take a pass this week. This morning I was inspired:


The Cat of Judgement
turns out I'm not my own worst critic

Thanks so much for stopping by ๐Ÿ˜ Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Diva Challenge #340 and InktoberX2

Diva Challenge #340
Use My Tangle Monday

This was a fun one. I've made a little stockpile of eco-printed tiles cut down from the larger pieces that didn't result in significant imprints, but I've found make nice tonal tiles. I'm hoping these can carry me through this season of challenges.
I enjoyed drawing along with Laura's video and agree with her about what a great pattern Wibble is. I remember this coming on my radar awhile back and liked it a lot and then forgot about it. Then it showed up on the Inktober list.
Speaking of...I did manage to complete all of the Zentangle inspired Inktober prompts following along with the Diva's YouTube videos and somewhat mirroring her dip pen drawings on Bijou tiles. I had a box full of my home made "Twinchies" from trimmings off of my watercolor tiles/ATC's and what I call my watercolor playground sheets, where I'm just experimenting with new palettes and practicing techniques and mixing colors etc. I also have white ones in here too.
I have about 8 ink colors and decided to play around with the addition of colored pencils. This was so much fun;-)

...and then, there's my Inktober sketchbook wrap-up:
I started this with a simple idea in mind, to draw objects, and perhaps views, in my apartment. Keep it simple and think of it as exercises and a journal of my home. I had never done this type of drawing before and after years of following Draw Tip Tuesday videos on YouTube, I thought I'd give it a go. I was inspired by this video which led me to make the concertina sketchbook.
I got pretty ambitious after the first several drawings because it was going better than I thought... and then, I got off track with a few missed days and felt overwhelmed.
Anyhoo...I'm still working through it although I've given up trying to follow the prompts as they stifled me from time to time when I couldn't make them fit my "Home" theme.

This is the hand made Concertina sketchbook
I'm working through

I mentioned in my last post that I procrastinate a lot with the YouTube videos, but I have to say that  the tutorials I came across a few weeks ago by Alphonso Dunn have been a total game changer! If you have any desire to start drawing or get back into it, check this guy out. Seriously. He's been posting tutorials for years so there are tons of them. I'm addicted.

Still in Inktober mode: Trail
This is near my apartment

the last Inktober prompt
It was a stretch;-)
I took advantage of Free Day at the SF Zoo

no more prompts
just drawing
a day at the zoo

I have a lot of drawing tools and covet more (I'm really wanting for Lamy Safari fountain pens). The ball point pen video I linked to above led me to try these last two drawings and I have to say, I love them.

This just in....

It took me awhile to find my purpose with Joey's latest series of 3D challenges. I was watching another one of Alphonso Dunn's drawing tutorials this morning and got this idea.

This is also a hindrance to my drawing

Thanks so much for stopping by. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me;-)

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Diva Challenge #339

Diva Challenge #339
Artoo, Gordgeous, Mooka & Diva Dance

I had the unusual work week of all opening shifts so my daytime drawing time was non-existent and in the evening I seem to be addicted to YouTube drawing videos so I was very unproductive. I flaked on the daily Inktober drawings but I'm still gonna finish it. Stay tuned.
I started this tile on a piece of eco-printed watercolor paper. The little branchy bit wanted to be "Artoo"...

It begins. Holiday themed challenges. Thankfully, The Diva gave us a little leeway, factoring in her global following since many don't celebrate Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas...and though it's Fall here it's Spring in the southern hemisphere.
I'm just a holiday theme curmudgeon and this is the time of year I'm constantly battling my peevishness with the short days and all of the holiday fueled sales pitches tossed at me every where I go  <<end rant>>.
I do love seasonal colors. Fall is my favorite. 
Though it wasn't required, I decided to give "Gourdgeous" a go as well. It's not a fave but I've seen it done so beautifully by others that it's one that I want to improve.

My artistic interpretation of Aimee 
I call this...
"I Naps"

Thanks so much for stopping by. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Diva Challenge #338, a Travelling Tangles Block Unblocked and Inktober

"White on Black"

I used the Gelly Roll pens for these. Something I saw on Pinterest inspired the above tile. I usually go for the Signo Uniball when doing white on black, less skippy, so I was just giving an old Gelly Roll a work-out and I really liked the way this turned out...plus it couldn't have been more Zen to draw.
I've adopted Laura's black gesso technique to create black tiles and recycle old rejects. I have a lot of rejects. The Gelly Rolls really like the smooth surface.

More White on Black
It's a really sunny morning so the white looks a little blue. 

I've been sitting on a stack of Travelling Tangles for well over a month. I had a pretty severe block which I tediously detail below. Fortunately I finally snapped out of it.

My finish...

...to this inspiring start by Pat Floerke
traveling all the way from Nicaragua

Pat started this on a gorgeous eco-printed tile.  This was one of the rare instances where I'll start with one idea and something else suddenly takes over. I've been seeing some really cool pieces using the new pattern Membranart here and there. I sat down to this with organics and flora in mind, with every intention of starting Pokeleaf, one of my mac 'n cheese patterns. The shapes in the eco-print seemed a perfect host...then an opposing force took over, telling me to try something new.  I drew the first stroke of the arch and...well...there you have it.

my finish...

...to another start by Pat

One of my favorite things is simple black and white on an official tile...so back in my comfort zone a bit. I have a hard time knowing when to stop because my pen is having too much fun;-)

my finish...

...to the 3rd tile sent by Pat

I love to draw auras. I only recently learned to go super slow and keep the spacing as consistent as possible. I think it worked. This was very Zen;-)

my finish...

...to this gorgeous start by Kim Aarts-Bruins
traveling all the way from The Netherlands

So. This was the tile that threw me into an unprecedented block and made me love the Travelling Tangles Project even more than I already do.
I've been a regular participant in this group for well over a year and I'm close to filling up my second album of collaborations. I complete my incoming pieces in the order that I receive them, so I couldn't move on until this one was done. That's just the way I roll. I abide by the saying "you can't wait for inspiration, you must chase after it with a stick" or something along those lines. The more challenging it appears, the more immediate the need to dive in.
This was one of those beauties I was hesitant with for fear of messing it up. I stared it down for a very long time. I put it away for a day and looked at it again. Kim and I have swapped before and I love her work. It's the antithesis of mine...so delicate and elegant. That was the first hurdle. Should I attempt to continue on (do I have the tools?) or aura it off and contrast it? I was also intimidated by the renaissance zendala. Always am. Whenever I get one, I sit on it much longer than I like. 
I decided to try a new pattern (can't remember the name) I saw on Melinda Barlow's YouTube channel...it's the one on the left with the alternating Fescu's. I only practiced it once because I use Fescu all the time. I went for it. I immediately hated it. I thought it was clumsy and the balance was totally off. I put it aside because I ALWAYS go back and find it's never as bad as it seemed. That didn't happen. Every time I looked at it, trying to find a way to fix it, I couldn't. I made myself a little crazy, because the thing is, the group is so encouraging and supportive. I could have posted anything and gotten positive feedback on it. I could have just not posted it at all and moved on. I know that happens because I have sent out countless swaps never to be seen again.
But, that's not how I roll. Each piece I receive is a gift. Not only a piece of someone's creativity and time, but it's a gift of artistic discovery and inspiration. There's so much more value to something you've struggled with...and after all...No Mistakes!!
I finally completed it after more than a month, continuing it one stroke at a time with one mooka here another fescu there until it felt balanced. I think it finally gelled for me when I finished it with the little black perfs(dots).
Then, I burned through all of Pat's tiles in less than 2 days with joy in my heart-)...and Kim, if you're reading this...thankyouthankyouthankyou and many thanks to ALL of you who got through this;-)

I'm a little behind with my Inktober drawings:

Inktober days 16, 17 & 18
When in doubt, draw the cat

Inktober Day 19

I took an excursion out to Flax last week. I spend a ridiculous amount of time watching YouTube videos of people doing art. One of my faves, Kendyll Hillegas, draws the most amazing food illustrations (I'm in the food business and love illustrated recipes so this especially appeals to me) and she had a video of one of her paper hauls. Normally, I just buy inexpensive watercolor pads from Blick or Aaron Brothers, but amped it up and I bought a couple of different 22x30 inch sheets of illustration and watercolor papers. I broke them down at the store by folding and tearing because I love deckled edges. It was a good day.

I got myself all set up to draw...
...Aimee had other ideas

Thanks so much for stopping by. Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Diva Challenge #337, IAST#215, Inktober...


This week, The Diva's young son "Artoo" turned 7 so to celebrate we're to use the pattern Laura created in his honor shortly after he was born (introduced in weekly challenge #9).
This was an experiment and there were two points in this process I almost gave it the boot, but I'm glad I stuck to it. I used a tile colored with art tissue. I'll re-use the strips of tissue until I've bled out the last dregs of color that I can. At the final stage, I usually just wad up a bunch of damp strips and smoosh them down onto a tile, saturate some more and using a piece of acetate press the wad flat and let it sit for a bit. I end up with just hints of color, which I really love.
I just bought a light grey Staetdler Triplus Fineliner and had an idea to play around with some layers and a bit of a monochromatic color scheme. I started with the darker of the two purples, then the lighter purple and finally the light grey. I thought the line work looked a bit clumsy and thought about ditching it at that point, but I had to keep reminding myself that the purpose was practice and play, NOT about a finished Instagram-worthy piece. Then I spritzed it with water to get some diffusion going, noodled around with a grey Tombow brush pen and then, "what the heck" let's see what a final stem in black on top of everything will look like. Love it! if I do say so myself;-)

Rope String
featuring: "Clob" & "Delys"

I've had a lot lapses with It's a String Thing challenges. Many of them mental. I completed this challenge very early in the week because I gelled with it right from the get-go (usually my first lapse if I don't feel the challenge right away) Rope String? One of my absolute Faves! The creator of "Clob", none other than Jem Miller aka "The Ragged Ray", another Fave! She and I have had several Travelling Tangles collaborations and I'm a huge fan of her work. "Delys"? gorgeous and new to me. I was super inspired by this challenge and got right to it.  Then, I completely forgot (a frequent lapse) to email it to Adele;-(
<<<heavy sigh>>> Story of my life;-)

Moving on... I'm quite pleased with myself for sticking to my Inktober guns. Last year I bailed after the first week. Here's my concertina sketchbook. I'm one page away from finishing the first side:

Day 11

Day 12:

Day 13:

Days 14, 15 & 16

Aimee Baby!
guess who just celebrated her 6th birthday
Isn't she just adorbs?!?

Thanks so much for stopping by! Your thoughtful and generous comments delight and inspire me ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿพ๐Ÿ˜ผ