Pet portraits

Art, Pencil

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?

sarahs-dog001web

shohaabs-dog002-web

Advertisements

Sketchbook Skool #4.1

Pencil, Sketches, Watercolor

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.

Image (58)  Image (A58)
These first two seagulls were drawn from photos I took. I like bird butts. 🙂 Image (B58) Image (56A)
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.

Image (57A)
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.

New Sketchbook

Pen & Ink, Sketches

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:

ImageI 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.

ImageThis here is a sketch from a very old and not too crisp photo of my great grandmother, Cora. 

ImageThis style sketch is easy and quick.

ImageI wanted to try a pen portrait with my smallest pen- a 005 Micron.

Oh my Gouache

Gouache, Sketches

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.

Image (70)