Friday, June 24, 2016

There's an Elephant in my Journal

I love elephants. They're incredible, kind, compassionate and strong with such beautiful wise old eyes and big hearts! 

I've drawn so many of them often over the years including this one I sketched in pen and wash the other day.

I drew the elephant a tad crooked so decided that he's just scratching his leg on the tree!

My ellie and mouse were drawn with a Derwent Graphic Line Maker in .3 and I used a waterbrush to activate the ink to blend out. 

Its a great technique, turning a line drawing into a greyscale painting. It can be simple doodles, Zentangling or highly detailed illustrations. Whichever side of the line you wet will bleed and blend into grey shadows.

Only the basic supplies are needed too, making it easy on the purse strings!

A waterbrush like the Jasart ones in my photo. These are fantastic! They hold oodles of water, saving you from carrying jars of water wherever you go. A square of kitchen paper will be useful too. I tend to clean my brush or test water amounts on the back of my hand so paper towel will stop your hand turning grey and soggy!

Drawing is done with a waterbased black pen, felt tipped or fine marker (texta) like a Chameleon Detail Pen (pictured) or Derwent Graphik Line Maker. The kids's textas like Crayola or the Faber-Castell ones that join together will work too :) You'll soon find out if your pen is waterbased or not when you use it, because if its not, it won't react to water no matter how many buckets of water you throw at it! The paper will get super soggy though, but that's fine too because it will dry and can be reused :)

My favourite paper to use is Strathmore, either the 400 series (brown cover) or the spiral bound art journal. This high quality watercolour paper withstands quite alot of water and scrubbing without going furry (pilling) or creating holes. Like any porous surface, too much water with friction will damage it eventually so still be gentle!

This rose in a tin pot was just a few squiggles, a few splotches of water and voila, a groovy little picture appeared! And the roses stayed looking like roses too, always a bonus! A couple of soft spots of water in the flower centres gives an impression of a full flower while wetting the tin can's sides makes it appear round.

The next few drawings are with my Chameleon pen (detailer, using .6 end). You can see the different colours that make black inks when you add water to them. The Graphik pen dries in variations of grey while the Chameleon dries with hints of green and yellow in soft grey tones.

They're all different, I had a Stabilo black felt tip pen that dried showing bright blues :) Experiment with what you have and see what other colours appear.

To create a simple watercolour flower using a pen 'n wash technique...
A - draw a spiral with the pen.
B - 'paint' the spiral to activate the ink using the waterbrush.
C - pull out the ink with the brush using a flicking action.
D - pull out more colour to create more or longer petals or even curved petals.

Once your flower is dry, add some loops for petals and add dots and spots for the centre. I also added a few white spots. 

Its amazing the difference a few squiggles and spots can do!

The next picture I've drawn and then used my waterbrush to pull out the ink to give shadows and shape.

The next few closeups will give a better idea...

I like how sometimes things work out! The wash has made the seaweed look really bendy :)

This pic with the crab hiding in the sand  was drawn over the sandy wash. No water has been added to the seaweed or crab.

You can use the pen like regular paint simply by scribbling a small spot then adding water to it. 
I made a spot of paint like this to add extra swirls in the sea and behind the fast swimming fish. Use quickly as it will dry. Not all pens reactivate once dry (after being wet once).

Hope this has shown how simple watercolour can be and are inspired to have a go :) Sing out if you need help or have questions.

Thanks for reading my blog :D
Happy creative day!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Mixing It Up

I've not had much time to create art these days... time flies so fast! But last month, I managed to get a few hours all at once :) Very grateful! I was waiting to post the art off to its owner (its for a swap) but its hiding at the moment! I figure if I post it in my blog it might reappear :) You never know!

Having a theme of "Pink" made it hard to start... but I soon got going. 

The outside was created using both the Dina Wakley and Dylusions (white) acrylic paints through a few stencils (Tim's "Scribble" and Dylusions' "Hearts" and "Flossie"). Then I added Ranger's translucent texture paste in matte using the heart stencil again and with a spatula, scraped the paste over different areas.

The quote stamp I used is "Good Bra" by Darkroom Door, stamped with black ink after the page was dry.

The doodling was drawn with a black Graphik line maker (Derwent) and white Sharpie (waterbased). You could also ise the groovy new Dylusions paint pens :)

The inside was created in a similar way, but without the texture paste. The flowers and butterflies are a serviette while the dragonfly is a diecut shape cut out of white card.

The quote is a Stampendous rubber stamp (such a lovely statement) inked with black StazOn.

The cute little bird is stamped with white Distresss ink (Picket Fence) and doodled over with my white Sharpie.

So that's my first DAJ :) I enjoyed mixing it up with paints, stencils and serviettes. Art is so much fun!

Happy Creative Day!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Journal Art - Cactus

Having a fab weekend? Hope so! In South Australia we have a public holiday on Monday for the racegoers to celebrate the Adelaide Cup horserace. So I'm going to work in the morning and get arty in the afternoon!

We had our local art journal meet yesterday (Saturday). Loads of laughs and fun as usual :) Love my friends!

This is a page I created in Yvonne's book... Handdrawn Cactus Wren on Yupo paper on a background made with paint and texture paste. I used acrylic paint and stencils by Tim Holtz, Dina Wakley and Dyan Reaveley's Dylusions, Ranger clear matte texture paste, pencil, black Fudeball pen and white Sharpie paint pen.

Distress paints are great for backgrounds, the colours blend well together! I used an mini ink blending tool to stencil with the white Dylusions paint and my fingers to stencil with the Distress paints. The texture paste I used a spatula.

Have you ever wanted to have a go art art journaling but don't know where to start? I can help you - with supplies as well as lessons :) I'm in southern beachside Adelaide, SA. Contact me via FB pm or my shop at 

Happy Creative Day!

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