Saturday, September 24, 2011

& colors

(These few posts are in response to the lovely Q's and comments I have received about art journaling.  We are doing a shared exercise and would love for you to join us.)

Adding color to a sketch on paper can be addictive.  (an artist's fair warning)

I rather like the idea that with pencil and paint you can create layers to real life, a "... giving the mundane its beautiful due!"  (Updike)  Adding a soft line of gold highlights and drawing tiny frills on boring edges, the possibilities are endless.  

It is your heart's leading.  What do you want to say.  

Many times I will sketch, paint, and draw without knowing the answers first.  That is okay too.

I took my simple watering can and copied it (one for watercolor, one for acrylics)

Did you like sketching? 
Did you have to remind yourself that there is no messing up in this kind of art?  

We are free to create our own art in this place.   

One of the simplest ways to add color in watercoloring is to wash it on ~ wet on wet.

(I am not endorsing any watercolor paints.  I have 5 different sets I am trying, each is unique in the  color choices and usability - wet/dry, small for travel.  This piece is done with a set of tube watercolors.  Feel free to use what you have at hand!)

These are examples of wetting the outside of my watering can with water on my small flat brush (just water) and then adding paint to the wet paper.  It all blends and flows together, the greens, browns, and golden colors.  Just make sure that you have your paints ready before you start.

If you let it dry completely, you can add layers on top.  I added the watering can last doing the same thing -- wet the paper first and then adding color.  The long streaks of brown and the little leaves were just an added layer, too.  If you look at my painting, you can see the brushstrokes added in, can't you?

When I get to this stage I always berate myself for not leaving enough unpainted space.  The "whites" in watercolor are what bring light and life into your work, try to leave some untouched whites inside your work.  I would have left a small strip around the top of the handle and the pail.   

But overall, I think this one will be adorable in the next stage.  I always tell myself how cute it is even if it isn't, it helps me stay motivated to stick with it.  Remember the ugly duckling story?    

How are you doing with yours?    

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Cut and wrinkled book paper decoupaged onto black canvas

Now, not to confuse you, but I really loved the idea of this watering can in paper piecing and acrylic paints as well.  In my art journaling I embrace all kinds of painting and tend to pull them all in.

Do you have a favorite paint medium or do you jump from one to another, too?

 I added a layer of light molding paste to this...I will let it dry and see what I want to do

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Now back to adding details on our original:  

My favorite part of this experience is adding in the detail and seeing the little piece come alive.  Have confidence in your sketching (give yourself a bitty pep talk) and then jump in.  Use a thinner pen ~ a micron o1 is the best if you are a bit unsure, you can paint over those tiny lines easily.  

Go around your basic shapes with a good sketching, add your hatching marks back in.  Add some life with personal nuances you use in your handwriting ~ add a couple tiny words?  A few xxxooo's?  Little numbers? A short verse or prayer?  

Keep in mind, we are using defined shapes and our hope is for journaling on top of our art, so we need to leave an area for writing.  White space, open area, is a good thing!  Or you may write right on top of your painting, too.

Remember ~ no rules.

I can't wait to see yours!  Leave a link in your comment or email me?

grace & peace to you today, 
may your sweet painting be a blessing to you~ 

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