Sketchbook Sunday: Monochrome Portrait in Watercolor

Hi friends!  It’s time for Sketchbook Sunday where I share the projects I am working on to grow my skill as an artist. Last week I mentioned that I was taking a class on painting figures in watercolor which required me to work from my own photos. During class last week our instructor has us draw a picture on a large sheet of transparent Mylar. I found a photo I had taken of my daughter sitting on a rock in a stream looking at her phone. She had climbed out there to take some pictures and she didn’t notice me snap a candid shot. I really loved the unposed causal feel of the photo.

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The instructor has us draw it on Mylar because he is going to have us paint it 2 more times, once using the “Zorn palette” of cadmium red, yellow ochre, lamp black, Ultramarine blue and Chinese white, and then again with a vibrant palette which he has not specified to us yet. I am currently working on the version with the Zorn Palette and I will share a photo of the finished work next weekend. I am really enjoying this class because it is pushing me to do exercises I normally wouldn’t think to try nor would I be likely to paint the same thing 3 times LOL!  Watch the video to see the process!

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I have received some surprised reactions from people when I tell them I am taking a class. “Why are you taking a class, you can already draw and paint?” is the general comment but let me tell you no matter where you are in your journey you should always strive to improve. It is being in that “atmosphere of growth”, as Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project puts it to stave off burnout and feel fulfilled and happy. Today’s project was not quick and easy, it was long and hard and in order to have a fulfilling career or even hobby we need to stretch ourselves a bit and push our skill to new levels.  For me that means paying good money to learn something new and having someone to hold me accountable. You can know the techniques in theory but until you go through the process and commit to doing them you will not completely understand the subject. I am unlikely to paint the same picture 3 times without having an instructor assign it, I am also unlikely to use the limited palette of Anders Zorn (which I learned didn’t even include Ultramarine Blue until his later years-Black, white yellow ocher and a warm red, can you imagine?!?) so trying the lesson another artists finds essential is very mind opening. I doubt black and white will be a permanent fixture in my palette but who cares? Be humble enough to let someone teach you something.

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Do you want to learn something new? I believe that drawing is the foundation to all forms of art and I have a course on beginner drawing that does go over portraits as well as still life, landscape and warm up exercises so you can learn to draw what you see. If you want help learning to draw please check out my course Learn to Draw with Lindsay and I would be humbled and honored to help you along in your artistic journey. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

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Ombre inking!

Howdy friends! This week at Oriental stamp Art there was a sketch challenge. The challenge was to make a card with strips of cardstock in various shades of the same color. I hit my scrap bin but could not come up with the colors I wanted so I did what any self-respecting crafter does (no, I did not go the the store) I figured out another way!

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I love the look. All you need is ink, masking tape (I used painter’s tape because it is less sticky) and a stipple brush (I used a color duster by Judikins but any hog bristle brush will work). Watch the video to see how I made this card!

In the video I mentioned 2 companies i have loved for years. I find Asian paper and embellishments hard to come by and when I find some I like I am afraid to waste it. I was looking around at Lettering Delights yesterday and found beautiful Asian papers, clip art and svg die cuts. They have a nice feature on their site called the “Try Me Now” tool and you can see all of the items in a set up close and if you purchase the set you can easily print them right from the site. You should download anything you purchase just in case but you can print your stuff with a click of a button! No opening software and knowing how to use it just click on the image, paper or what have you, type the size you want and click print, easy as pie! and in the case of paper you save a lot of room on your hard drive! Did I mention easy? If you have purchased anything from lettering delights in the past you can log in at the site and it is all there! You can even type out titles and just print that, it is amazing I tell you! You can go play with the try me tool even if you have never bought anything, be sure to checkout the monthly freebies while you are there and sign up for the newsletter because thy have coupons sometimes! They are have a dollar sale on some of their stuff right now too.

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The other company I love is About Art Accents, I love their Asian stamps from the delicate nature stamps to their bold paper-cut stamps they offer a great stamp for whatever theme Asian card I want to make!

If you have any questions on the techniques I shared today just leave a comment! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

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