There are so many differences between digital art and traditional art. One is there is a whole lot less mess with digital art. Especially for me, because I trash the joint when I’m painting……. Just ask my other half.
Some people prefer the traditional and some prefer digital. I thought (before I started digital art) that it would be easier, oh how wrong I was! It’s just as difficult to get a fantastic image, the challenges are just different. You still need to learn how to use your brushes, how the ‘canvas’ feels.
I can’t wait to learn more and more. As with traditional art I have so many ideas that I want to try. My reference photo library is going to come in handy. I’ve already used several of my photos to help with shape, style and colour palettes.
Weekly trips and adventures are going to become a regular occurrence in our family life. My aim is to get at least 2 images for my library every week. They give me inspiration and ideas for my art. Looking forward to the next few weeks of art!
I have now been an Artist for just over a year. I am shocked at how far I’ve come in one short year. I’ve made so much progress and I’ve been able to address some of my confidence issues.
Above is one of my very first sketches……. 🙈🙈
As an artist you are forever being judged. So many people think you don’t actually “work” and that it must be easy to throw some paint on a canvas. There will always be someone sniggering behind your back, sometimes even to your face. But you know what the best thing I’ve learnt this year is? Is not to care or listen to the armchair critics. The quicker you learn to ignore the ‘know-it-alls’ the better off you are going to be.
Above is a short video a start of a puffin sketch. It turned out really nice. It just shows a little bit of effort every day over time is totally worth it.
I have enjoyed so much about the last year. I’ve loved that many people love my art and that lots of my pieces (prints and originals) are making lots of people happy. I’ve loved learning new skills and learning how to perfect certain techniques. I’ve even enjoyed finding myself lost and not sure how to move a piece forward. I have also enjoyed being able to put those pieces down, move to something new and then coming back to the old piece and knowing exactly where to go.
Learning that I don’t have to force myself to be creative and enjoying the fact that some of my better pieces were created when I threw the rule book out the window.
I learnt to TRUST myself. Trust that I am actually good at this. It’s wonderful that after many years, several different jobs and career choices that I have finally found something I love. And yet I still have SO much farther to go. The road may seem never ending, but holy moly I am going to enjoy strolling off down the winding dirt path with the fairies.
Keep up with my progress and all my new pieces for this next year by following me on Instagram and Facebook. If you would like to see what original pieces and prints I have on sale at the moment check out my Etsy Store or my Redbubble Site.
Anyone who knows me, knows I love Harry Potter. I especially love drawing the magical creatures in the movies. My most recent piece that I’ve drawn is Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback. It took me a long time to get all the details right. I hope you all like him!
First Stages – sketching out his shape and making sure all the proportions are accurate. I chose to draw him on A3 size 110gsm sketching paper.
The first few layers of the wings were tricky. Using my graphite pencils and my pencil eraser to try to get the texture right.
My next major challenge was the texture in the wood of the table he was on. Inserting the shadows underneath Norbert gives the 3D affect to my graphite sketch.
The final stages are a little tedious sometimes. You can see the end, it’s so close but it’s not quite perfect yet! This stage probably took the longest time to complete.
After approximately 5 hours of work, here Norbert is! I really love him. Now I get to choose another beast to draw! If anyone has any suggestions drop you choice in the comments.
Now, as Norbert isn’t my original creation he won’t be for sale. I do have many other animals, flowers and landscapes available to purchase in my etsy store. Here’s a link to one if my small dragon sketches! Dragon Art Print
If you would like to keep up to date with all my art sketches and paintings please check out my Facebook or Instagram accounts.
Here’s a couple of pictures of my rosehip sketch I completed in about an hour. It’s very simple but I really love it. I have started an acrylic painting, but it’s still a work in progress. The reference photo is curtesy of The Mad Potter.
The first layer of graphite…….
The second and third layers of graphite are so much easier to apply. Once you have the basic shading it’s really just about light and shade. It’s important you don’t put too much dark on all at once. You need to build it up slowly, it’s very difficult to take it off once it’s on there.
This week the topic is my favourite tools! Learn about what paint brushes, pencils, markers, water colour pencils and ball point pens I love and why!
It’s really hard to find an ethical paint brush when you’re vegetarian. I don’t use any that are made from animal hair. This is something that is really important to me! I only use synthetic brushes. It’s hard to get a ‘rough’ look to your paint with synthetic brushes. So what I do is mess a couple up by scrubbing them hard into the canvas board or tissue paper. It messes the bristles up and you can get a much more natural effect for things like trees.
Spectrum Noir Markers
Alcohol Markers are becoming far more popular. They give a great deal of colour saturation with very little effort. They are especially good for fantasy art and animae drawings. Blending can be really difficult when you’re starting out with them. Paper plays an important role with alcohol Markers.
This is the sketching set I’m using at the moment. They are fairly good, but next time I’ll be purchasing something that’s a little better quality. I find there isn’t a lot of difference between the hard leads and the softer pencils. This sometimes can make shading very difficult.
The below picture is of a print drawn in watercolour pencils. You can lay a lot of colour down to make things very rich and vibrant, or use a very light pressure and just add a wash of colour. The background in my dragon picture has a light blue wash.
Graphik Line Markers – My all time favourite Markers. They come in various tip widths and are so easy to use. You do need to be carful when using them with water colours – make sure they are the last layer you put down. They tend to run!
I like to outline water colour pencil and graphite pencil sketches with these on occasion. I also like to sketch little designs with them.
I often get asked is Canvas or Paper better to paint/draw on. The answer is simple…….. it depends on what you want to draw or paint! There are so many options and there are so many things you need to consider. I’m going to show you what I use and how I use it to help you make a good decision for yourself.
For practice drawing and sketching you want to have a smooth paper. So a hot pressed paper that isn’t too thick. Anything up to 120gsm is pretty good. The thickness of the paper will still give you a quality feel to your sketch and the hot press will give you a smooth finish. The smoother the paper, the cleaner your lines will be which will give you a more realistic look.
My current art journal is less than 100gsm and is not suitable for anything other than sketching. Below is a picture of an Orca that I drew in my journal. If you try to use other medias (paint or watercolour) on this type of paper it will wrinkle and curl. It damages the paper and if you do that, there’s no saving it.
Mixed Media Paper 250 gsm +
The below sketch is a graphite on 250gsm mixed media paper. This paper is meant to handle Acrylic paint well, but water colour is a bit of a stretch. I love it to print my art work on to this paper because it has a bit of texture just like a canvas and it gives the print a really good quality look and feel.
The above picture is a print of my original Acrylic painting printed on to 250gsm paper.
Cold Pressed Cotton Paper
A cold press paper is rough, it has what is called ‘tooth’. It is ideal if you like that bumpy, textured feel and look to your painting. I personally don’t like to draw on this type of paper. I love to paint on it! I use a 300gsm cold press cotton paper with my acrylics. You get a matte finish with the textured finish of a canvas. The cotton paper is actually made for water colour paint because it can handle the wet application without creasing and folding. I use watercolours and acrylic on it and it performs beautifully.
There are several types of canvas you can get. The main types are stretched canvas, canvas board and canvas paper or sheets. I prefer to use a stretched canvas. I like the bounce back it gives you. All types of canvas have a tooth (bumpy texture) that I love! With the stretched canvas’s you don’t have to frame and can hang as is.
Above is an acrylic Painting is on a stretched canvas of Saundersfoot Beach. This is my favourite material to paint on.
For my original painting of my Light house I did it on a canvas board. As you can see from the below picture that it performs much like a stretched canvas. It has a tooth, although not as deep. It is an easy and cheaper way to start painting. They come in all sorts of sizes and packs. You can frame them easily too.
I hope you liked my tips for how to choose the right material to paint or draw on. Come back next week for more!