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!
Purchasing a downloadable Art Print from your favourite artist will be a cheaper more cost-effective way to bring colour and life into your space. It helps the artist, who let’s face it, is more than likely struggling to even cover costs let alone earn a wage. It also allows you to have some killer artwork to brighten your day and because it is so affordable you can inter-change them often.
There are a couple of things you need to be aware of when printing your own art prints.
Firstly, it is absolutely do-able on your printer at home. You may not get the Giclee quality – after all there is a reason you spend an arm and a leg. However, you will get some really good quality prints to frame and mount in your home or office or to give as a gift.
If you are printing in colour make sure you have enough colour ink in your printer. I can not stress this enough – your art print will look terrible if the colour is out of balance.
For black and white sketches, increasing the sharpness of your image slightly can be advantageous.
TIP: Make sure if you have the digital file, keep a copy of the un-touched image incase you go overboard with editing.
You may need to print it more than once to get it perfect. All printers and monitors are different – one printer might print vivid bold colour, where another it may be a little pale and lack luster. If you are printing a digital print from an artist, you shouldn’t have to mess about too much but adjusting the brightness and the contrast slightly can make the world of difference.
Size matters – and it’s not always the biggest that’s best. When an artist sketches or paints an image, they paint it at a certain size. Most artists selling downloadable prints will have a set size – you will be able to decrease the size and still have a beautiful image – increasing the size too much will have a detrimental effect on the details of the image. This should be avoided. You will lose some detail in an art print (sometimes brush strokes will look smoother) already. Keep this in mind. No more than a 5% increase in size is advised.
Paper – one of the most important parts. I print on to good quality sketch or water colour paper. At least 250gsm. This gives it a professional feel and look once printed. I would steer clear of any paper that is too rough (tooth). Smooth paper with a little bit of grain is perfect.
TIP: Print on to regular paper in black and white to save ink if you are unsure about size. Once you have the size adjusted perfectly, print in colour on regular paper. Once you are happy with the composition of that, only THEN print on to your good paper. This paper can get pricey, save yourself some money.
On a very serious note, if buying a digital downloadable print from an artist, it is still subject to copywrite. You are still only able to print a few copies for your own personal use. They are in no means there for you to sell on or use as your own art. Cutting out the artist signature is illegal in many countries. Remember that the art print is cheaper for 2 reasons, to allow the artist to possible actually earn some money off their talents and to allow you the consumer affordable art. Both reasons are too put more art into the community, which I believe is an essential part of life.
Art brings joy to those who appreciate it. As well as sometimes causing controversy and making people talk about things that otherwise would not be spoken about.
See the downloadable prints available in my Etsy store.
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.
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!