My son’s preschool puts on an auction each year. Families are asked to contribute a useful service or something handmade. This year, I’m donating a custom pet portrait. I decided to go for small pencil drawings. These two are samples I’ll have on display so folks can get a good idea of what they’re bidding for.
I haven’t had anything up in my Etsy shop for a few months, but I’ll add this custom pet portrait to it. People sure do love their pets. And who doesn’t love a dog in glasses?
This week’s lesson was taught by Cathy Johnson, a naturalist and artist who has written a boat load of books and has a whole heap of experience in capturing nature. She is a sweet lady and I really enjoyed watching her videos because she’s positive and lovely and you can just tell that she is a very nice person. I love drawing animals, but I usually (ok, always) draw them from photos, because, well, you know, they move. I did my best to draw a bird from nature, but it was pretty pathetic. As Cathy suggested, if you can’t get a reasonable likeness from a moving object, just use a picture. But better to use a picture you took yourself to maintain a real life connection.
These first two seagulls were drawn from photos I took. I like bird butts. 🙂
This third seagull was from a googled photo. And this 4th page was done in real life as I walked around the embarcadero in Morro Bay. That thing in the middle? It’s a squirrel. I thought I could draw a squirrel from memory (which is basically what this is) since I’ve drawn them before, but alas. No.
This last one is also from a googled image. I liked this lesson, but it was hard. I learned that I do like working in pencil for birds and other animals. H and 3B work out nicely.
Jackamoose. His neck is so strong.
The more shrimp a Flamingo eats, the more pink she is. That’s a fact.
More art as inspired by the Creating Textures in Pen & Ink book. I dig drawing animals in ink but am usually happy with the black and white look.
Last weekend I made a trip to Blick to get one specific item. It was not paper. I have SO much paper. On the way to that item’s section I passed the paper and sketchbook aisle…
I will say that I made it out of there for under $15, so it wasn’t so bad.
I bought a Canson 6″ x 6″ spiral bound book and a Bee Paper 5.5″ x 8.5″ Pen Sketcher’s book. I like to have these little inexpensive sketchbooks because they don’t intimidate me. If I fill them with ugly doodles, no big deal. This freedom does tend to lead me to make drawings I end up really liking, which makes me wish I had put them on nicer, frame-able paper. Ah, well. I hate that I have piles of very lovely, thick, archival paper laying around completely neglected. Fear of failure, people. There’s also something about the potential of a blank piece of paper that I don’t want to mess with. What nonsense.
I’ve filled a couple pages of the 6″ x 6″ and here they are:
I admit, I have a bit of a problem starting a blank notebook, even a cheap one, for fear that the first page will not inspire the looker to continue looking. (I know, I know.) So, I just accepted the first page-ness of this first page.
This here is a sketch from a very old and not too crisp photo of my great grandmother, Cora.
This style sketch is easy and quick.
I wanted to try a pen portrait with my smallest pen- a 005 Micron.
I really love Jackalopes, but this old girl wasn’t suited for antlers. Can you imagine getting that collar on with antlers in the way? What a hassle.
My husband gave me a set of Reeves gouache paints for Christmas and I finally broke ’em out yesterday. I’ve never used gouache before except to add white on top of watercolor paintings (which I had trouble making look decent… not my fav. technique for w.c.) so I thought I’d just goof around and do some sketchy stuff instead of blast right in to a painting I’d want to look nice.
Gouache is super RAD. I need to learn all about it. The colors are so bright and thick it almost looks like pastel. I like the flat finish of gouache compared with the plastic-y shine of acrylics.
You can see that the colors are so much more brilliant than watercolor. It lends itself very well to an illustrator-ly style but a quick internet search of gouache images shows that it’s capable of so much more! I’m excited.
Nothing is more fun than painting animals in silly hats. This is my brother and sister in law’s dog, Janie. She is a wild party-er.