Showing posts with label paint. Show all posts
Showing posts with label paint. Show all posts

January 05, 2016

Pretty to Look At



On Sunday, after almost a full day spent painting, I decided it was time for a treat.
These French macarons look so good, no? Wished I could say, yes. They are a too sweet for me but, my, they are pretty.  I do, however, love French butter cakes or Madeleines and even though I made some for Christmas, to appease the sweet tooth, I reckon I will whip up another batch.

Taken last summer. The fan was a gift that I received a couple of years ago from you know who. Thanks again.  I've always wanted one.

 Next week my red Amaryllis will bloom, I hope.

A sample of what's on my desk. He's not quite they way I wanted him, so I have another one on the board, waiting for his watercolour bird bath.
* * *

I was happy to watch the first episode of the last series of Downton Abbey.  I've heard that Mr. Fellowes is considering making a Downton movie for television. I hope he does! 
In case you don't know, he's also writing another historical drama named Belgravia. It begins in April, but apparently it will be on an app., weekly with eleven enhanced episodes. You can either read or listen. Sounds neat.

'Til Next Time...

August 05, 2015

Nature Studies

Drawing recently from nature, Queen Anne's Lace or wild carrot. To me, it's not your average weed. It's intricate and delicate and before it blooms it's wrapped in a wondrous package.
I found wild coneflower, or echinacea too.


To answer a request, I'm including a list of the art supplies I use and a few tips that I've learned.

Staedtler pencils. 2H-6H, (H for hard) but I prefer the 2H, although, occasionally, I use soft leads or B pencils, especially 2B.
FW acrylic inks.
Kneaded Erasers and plastic erasers.
Tracing paper ~ a must, unless you draw straight onto your watercolour paper.
Sketchbooks ~ look for good quality paper.

After researching watercolour paper and trying several different brands, I prefer hot pressed paper for painting.  Fabriano Artistico and Arches are acid free and 100% cotton. I use140 lb weight. (The higher the weight the thicker the paper.) I prefer Fabriano, but I am getting use to Arches. It requires a light hand, but can take several glazes.
I use watercolour blocks that are glued on all four sides; the paper doesn't require stretching.  (There's a small hole at the top of the block, you insert a thin knife and go around the block to remove the sheet from the block when your painting is completely dry.) I also buy large single sheets. It's cheaper that way, but the paper requires stretching or it will buckle and it takes time to cut the sheets into the sizes you want. ( A scary breath holding activity!)

I occasionally use Strathmore Watercolour cards; they are cold pressed ~ not as smooth as hot pressed paper.

Watercolour paints. I mostly use Schmincke and W& N. Windsor and Newton is bright and clear.  Schmincke can look chalky sometimes and I  do like Sennelier paints as well.  I also have a set of Derwent watercolour pencils that I received as a gift. In the beginning, I was using the watercolour pencils to paint with.  Around here, they are cheaper if you buy them individually.

* If you are just starting out, I would recommend that you buy good quality watercolour paper, a few tubes or pans of professional watercolour paint/or good quality watercolour pencils. They do make a huge difference! A (sable or faux sable) #4 watercolour brush is, in my opinion, a must. They are expensive, but should last a very long time if treated well. Never use it to mix paint with. (A tall order--one sometimes forgets.)  And you will annihilate it if you use it to apply FW inks.

Interesting optional items: Masking fluid and Gum Arabic.
Masking fluid is used to cover small stamens etc, that you will paint later, or any area that you want to keep white while you are painting. When it is completely dry, you rub your fingers over it to remove it.

Gum Arabic extends the drying time of paint, adds vibrancy, and is also used to add shine to eyes, reflections etc.

In the end, it's all about personal preferences, so experiment, have fun in the process and you will  find out what works for you.


  Until next time enjoy creating...

July 19, 2015

Sketching Flowers Part II


A little jazz for my new sketchbook.
Top of the week to all of you!  I don't think I've every posted this early in the week.


Because it was so drab, I decided to dress up my new sketchbook; that, no doubt, is probably the point of buying one of these books. (I bought it because the paper.) I am not sure how long these watercolour flowers will stay on the Kraft paper, but I enjoyed painting them.


Over the years, I've heard many people say that they can't draw.  I don't think that's entirely true. Why? Because I was one of those people. It was only when I changed my mind that I managed to get something down on paper other, that is, than a stick man.  For me, drawing is a dream/wish come true! (Hmm, I wonder what else I can change my mind about ~ not sky diving!)

To expand upon that thought below is a video that someone sent me. It's amazing ~  you can't believe your eyes.  As you watch, you'll notice the deep concentration going on behind that paintbrush. However, with that said, I do feel very ambivalent about this video. In many ways it's heart breaking because, of  course, I'd like all wild animals to be free, but that's not always the case, especially these days. (This elephant is also someone's bread winner.)

We all know elephants are very intelligent, but should an elephant be taught to paint? We used to think that only humans used tools, this video goes well beyond that idea. On the other hand, perhaps this type of training will help the world recognize and cherish animals more, including saving their habitat.

What are your thoughts?
 

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