Poppies and Lupin
I’m testing Faber-Castell Gel Sticks. These watercolors in gel form are meant for kids. They are like a twistable crayon and come in a set of 12 colors. I thought I would try them out on a flower sketch.
She Wolf Experiments
The last two days I’ve experimented with new art supplies. I bought a new Kuretake watercolor palette. It took a month to get here from Japan. So, I was anxious to try out the colors. I decided to use a portrait reference from the Julia Kay Portrait Party group on Flickr. I did a quick pen sketch and used the new palette to color it.
I did these small flower studies all on the same piece of paper. The first thing I did was adhere the paper to a piece of 2mm Sintra PVC panel with some brushed on acrylic soft gel medium. I let that dry for about an hour under some heavy books. Next I split the page into quarters with blue painter’s tape.
On the Willamette
I did this small study today to test out how watersoluble markers work on a smooth gessoed panel. It’s like working with a limited selection of watercolors. Also I discovered that ink just sits on top of the gesso. It does not stick or sink into it. So, if you apply a second layer, it tends to lift the previous layer instead of building up to a darker more opaque color. The color remains transparent and shows the texture and streaks in the gesso underneath.
6×6 inch (15×15 cm) Sintra PVC gessoed panel, Arteza Real Brush pens, and Arteza flat waterbrush.
Daffodils in the Woods
I’m looking for a way to do plein air paintings without carrying brushes or water or wet media. I did this small study to see how tempera paint sticks and brush markers handle on canvas panel. I laid in the major areas of color with the paint sticks first and then I added detail with darker colors using the brush markers.
Reference Photo – Daffodils in the Woods
5×7 (12.5×17.7 cm) canvas panel, Mod Paint Sticks, Arteza Real Brush Pens.
This bush is in our backyard. It’s in full bloom. I’ve been glancing at it throughout the day thinking about how I’d approach sketching it with paint sticks dabbing on the pure color. Finally, before dinner I found the time to sit down and try out my plan.
Fabriano Studio Watercolor hot press 140 lbs 8×10 inch (20.3×25.4 cm) paper, Mod Paint Sticks.
Sketching from Google Street View. Testing tempra paint sticks on smooth paper with water.
Strathmore Mixed Media 400 Series 9×12 inch (22.9×30.5 cm) paper, pencil, Mod Tempra Paint sticks, Arteza flat waterbrush, ArtGraf Viarco 6B water-soluble pencil, Kuretake #13 brush fountain pen with Platinum Carbon Black ink, and Molotow 2mm empty pump marker with Dr. Ph. Martin Pen-White ink.
Freehand vs Traced Underdrawing
Today I did two small sketches (3.5×6 inches each) of the same photo reference to compare sketching freehand and sketching using a traced underdrawing. I did the freehand sketch first.
The other day I found a box of cardboard heat-seal 35mm slide mounts and an old custom built slide mounting press. I wondered if it still worked and if so, how I might put it to good use. It occurred to me that I could do miniature paintings and frame them in slide mounts as a novelty. They might make interesting business cards.
Winter in the Willamette Valley has its own stark beauty – cold and gray. I thought charcoal would be the best medium to express this scene interpreted from a personal photo.
Yachts Trees Final Print
This is a seven color hand-pulled print 6×6 inches (15.2×15.2 cm). There are 10 prints in this edition.
Some projects take a long time to complete. I worked on the first six colors over the course of several weeks last Spring. Then the project sat on the shelf for six months until I figured out how I was going to print the final black layer.
Sun Over Mountain – 6 Color Block Print
This little print (4×6 inches, 10×15 cm) is the culmination of two weeks research and planning and gathering of materials and tools. It is my first attempt at printing in color. It uses six plates to print six colors.
Nikki – Block Print
When I first moved to Oregon and lived out in the country, I got a puppy to keep me company. I called her Nikki (wild dog of the north). She was a Collie / Husky mix – a very smart, sweet dog. I used this photo of her as a reference for this linocut.
Birches Block Print
I made this print from a printing plate made out of card stock. I used scissors and an Xacto knife to cut up card stock and I then glued the pieces to another piece of card stock using Elmer’s white glue and then glued the whole thing to a thin sheet of wood. I sealed the plate by painting it with a thin coat of acrylic gloss medium. Here’s what the plate looked like before I inked it up for printing.
This is my second attempt at block printing. I carved a soft rubber plate (3.75×5.25 inches, 9.5×13 cm) mostly using the smallest V shaped Speedball cutter and an xacto knife.