Painting Ginkgo Leaves And Making Patterns

ginkgo watercolour sketch
Ginkgo watercolour sketch

Hi there how are you?

I love ginkgo leaves, speciality at this time of year. The leaves turn from green to yellow and lovely pale oranges.

I picked a few fallen leaves one day last week and brought them home to draw. It was just a sketch drawn with a fine liner. I scanned them into the computer for later and then coloured them with watercolour.

Later in the week I signed up for a class by Bonnie Christine. She is teaching a free 5 day class on pattern making in illustrator. I know the basics of pattern making but every time I take one of these classes I pick up a few hints, tips and techniques that make this epic program easier to understand.

Since I’d drawn the line work for the ginkgo earlier I decided to use them to make the pattern and I scanned the painted leaves in to for extra pattern pieces.

The blue image is the same pattern in four different colour variations. It was made with the line art. i really like this one, must be going through my blue phase hehehe.

1 ginkgo pattern 4 colour-ways
1 ginkgo pattern 4 colour-ways

These were made with both the line art and the watercolour images. I have to say I find the colour picker in illustrator totally addictive, I can’t stop clicking for the next colour variation.

4 ginkgo patterns
4 ginkgo patterns

And finally in this one I’ve put the leaves in rows, I’m happy with this one because I got all of the leaves to join up so you can’t see the start point.

lines of ginkgo 2 colour ways
Lines of ginkgo 2 colour ways

I had promised myself I wouldn’t do more classes this year, they take up so much time. This one was too good to pass up though.

I like making digital patterns and even digital art but it needs a lot of time in front of a screen and isn’t that relaxing so for the rest of the year I want to stick to my sketch book and get down to some drawing and painting, it’s been sadly neglected for a wile now.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Beetles

beetles

Hi there how are you?

It’s December already! The last month has flown by.

Last week of the Victoria Johnson course I drew a stag beetle, it was supposed to go with last weeks images but didn’t seem to fit so I embellished it a little more and it sits nicely with the other beetles now.

We all did beetles as part of the course and it was the part I was least looking forward to, all of those creepy little legs.

Well something I never thought I’d say,”I’ve spent the whole week drawing beetles and enjoying every minute of it! The beetles I’ve seen on–line are amazing with all of the lovely patterns and colours suddenly I drew a whole page of them. Who would have thought?

They’re a bit wonky, coloured with watercolour and outlined with various gell pens. I’ve even used some gold markers but that doesn’t show up in the scan. They do look quite fancy when they catch the light though.

I am working digitally for this course because it was the only way to keep the colours consistent and work quickly enough to keep up with the rest of the class.

I pulled my little beetles into illustrator and drew out all of the shapes and turned them into various patterns.

Here are my two finished collections. (I don’t have fancy names for them) The first one is birds, butterflies and flowers. I’ve tinkered around with them since last week, changed colours, added stuff and they’re looking a lot better.

Collection1 flowers butterflies and birds
Collection 1

The second collection; Beetles, they are much better all together. The patterns made from my ropey little drawings came our quite well.

Collection2 beetles
Collection 2 Beetles

The beauty of illustrator, I clicked the screen by accident and changed the whole colour of the orange beetle. Oooooo I like this one too hehehe

blue beetle
Orange beetle turned blue.

The reason I had taken this class was to give me a change from inktober and stop the burn out I usually have after a monthly challenge, boy did it ever! It’s probably the hardest course I’ve taken; it was a huge task just to keep up with everything.

If you’re an illustrator, designer or professional artist selling to companies this is the lady to see, so much useful information (so much!) for me I’m glad to have completed it and now I can get back to my drawing although maybe in the back of my mind some of this epic information will stick. You never know how these things will affect you till they do.

Now the class is finished its time to start getting ready for the day, only 24 more days to go so I better get a move on!

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Birds Butterflies And Blooms

bird and flowers

bird and flowers

Hi there how are you?

The last four weeks I’ve been taking a class by Victoria Johnson called create collections and it turned out to be a lot harder than I thought.

I tried to make all of the art work traditionally but couldn’t get the colours to gell and started to wonder why I had taken this class in the first place.

After discarding many paintings (probably as much to do with a mean inner critic as poor colour coordination) I decided to regroup and start again this time using illustrator. Digital colours are much easier to control so I set up a small colour palette to work off.

I Started (above) with the little bird and adding flowers and butterflies, then on to some flowers influenced by the blossom. I think the flowers need tweaking but its getting there.

Next a pattern: Since I had used opened butterflies for the main image I changed to butterflies with closed wings and switched up the colours, it’s kind of pretty.

butterfly pattern
Butterfly pattern

For a less busy pattern I took some of the leaves in the flower image, changed the colours and made an implied pattern. It doesn’t repeat but it’s big enough to give the idea of a pattern.

leaf pattern
Pink leaves

A couple of coordinates or tiny patterns and that’s it for now. I still have lots to do but at least I have something to hand in now.

tiny patterns
Tiny blossoms and dots

Hopefully these look like they belong in a group (coordinate) especially as that seems to be the point hehehe.

I may paint some of these up in watercolour after the class is finished, at least the ones I really like.

This week we have to put everything together and present it, interesting times.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Lots Of Little Birds

Week three 2nd page.
Week three 2nd page. Too pink?

Hi there how are you?

What a week! I’ve been concentrating on the course I enrolled in (create collections by Victoria Johnson)

It doesn’t look like much but that one pink page has taken all week too put together.

I drew all the bits and they were placed in photoshop. I think I spent far too long in front of a computer this week.

I’ve painted a few other blue tits along side this one, not sure they will be used in this class yet so I’m going to wait and decide nearer the end.

I’m still not sure about the colour, it’s a little bright. I’m sure some one will have some kindly advice and I’ll be able to fix it later.

To get away from the computer I painted some little watercolour birds. I’m trying to be a little more illustrative, I think. Normally I paint or draw what I see, more the way the little blue tit is painted above, and I suppose I’m taking inspiration from the other artists in the group and trying something different.

Where ever will it end!

little bird 1
little bird 1

They were based on photos on pinterest but didn’t copy them but “took inspiration” and changed the colours. I think the background colour needs to change a bit because they’re all a bit bland, maybe if I get time I’ll have another play with them.

little bird 2
little bird 2
little bird 3
little bird 3

I have more pages and even patterns to make next week so no playtime for me if I don’t get my homework done hehehe

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Taking On A New Challenge

hummingbird finding colours

hummingbird finding colours

Hi there how are you?

After the marathon that is inktober I usually feel a bit flat. Drawing something every day isn’t a problem I do that any way, 5 minutes here half an hour there, mostly the drawings however are not very good. Over a normal week maybe half of my drawings are worth posting the rest are stepping stones to something else. During inktober though there has to be something postable every day!

This year I thought I would head of the burn-out by enrolling in a class. Create collections was one of the first classes that took my interest. I don’t know what a collection is or what you’re supposed to do with them but I intended to find out. ???

create collections

create collections

We started of finding colour palettes. Turns out I am already using most of my favourite colours and with a few additions they’re even more favourite hehehe.

I drew a lot of humming birds. I love the colour palette of the first one above; the others are placed against different colours to see how they looked.

hummingbird 1

hummingbird 1

hummingbird 2

hummingbird 2

This week we made a finished piece in a “collection” I thought I would use those lovely muted colours again but no, my brain had other ideas! I used a little painting of a geranium I had painted way back in August, painted some other bits and pieces to go with them and after much fiddling about came up with this.

geranium wreath

geranium wreath

I quite like how it turned out now but there were a few moments when I thought “why am I doing this!!” the class is full of illustrators and designers so I’m feeling a little out of my depth, all of the work I see in the class is amazing and well thought out, Then there’s me.

The challenge is on and I’m out of my comfort zone but I am drawing loads of stuff, mostly things not worth posting but there’s no sign of burn out so achievement unlocked.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Inktober 2019 Final Week

28 iguana

28 iguana

Hi there how are you?
Inktober is done, happy November!

It’s been an interesting and very enjoyable month, I liked the way brown paper looked when other people used it and wanted to see if I could get a similar effect.
I have used tons of pieces of paper drawing, sketching and working out ideas, hopefully it’s had impact on my drawing abilities.

1. iguana – (above)I took a photo of this iguana at the zoo, it was a bit blurry but good enough to draw from.

2. iguana – once I’d posted the iguana in instagram I realised it wasn’t quite done and needed more work, so I used my brush pen to give it a dark background and lightened the rock a little with a white gell pen, I like it a lot more now.

29 iguana 2

29 iguana 2

3. pigeons – this one made me chuckle, it was actually a photo of pigeons eating seed but once I’d drawn them it looked like two ladies having a cheery chat hehehe.

30 pigeons

30 pigeons

4. magpie – I love the way this one came out, I should have drawn more magpies, they look great on this paper. This was day 31 the last day of inktober

31 magpie

31 magpie

5. testers – although inktober was finished I had missed one day in the middle so I used some of the little test pieces. They were 3×3” off-cuts from the bigger pieces of paper. The two little bees were drawn with gell pens, I was missing colour and I hoped I could use the gell pens but meh, it wasn’t quite working for me. I used watercolour for two of the hummingbirds; it worked a lot better than I thought it would.

testers last ones

testers, last ones

I didn’t use the prompts this year; I haven’t found a way to incorporate them into my drawings without turning out a lot of art that I feel no connection to. I have enjoyed other people’s interpretation of them though.

I enjoy the inktober challenge; somewhere in the middle I always get that low feeling of “how many more is there left to do!” If I can push through that it’s usually OK.

I never know how this month will impact on the future arty stuff I do, it’s always fascinating to see it crop up when I’m not thinking about it.

If you participated no matter how many you did congratulations and here’s to next year.

(too soon? hehehe)

Next week hopefully I will be using colour again, yay!

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Inktober 2019 Week 4

20 one dancing crane

20 one dancing crane

Hi there how are you?

It’s Week 4, almost there now, just a few days to go. I managed a drawing every  day this week so am patting myself on the back for sheer determination. The challenge is quite enjoyable but deciding what to draw is a lot of work.
Had I followed the prompts I’m sure it would have taken even longer because I found the words really hard to interpret this year.

1. Dancing crane – (above) a single dancing crane (there was only room for one on the page) I used a big red sun in the background. The paper wrinkled a bit because the red ink was very thin.

2 + 3 humming birds – I drew a hummingbird in the first week; he was just taking flight and a little puffed out. The next two hummingbirds are in full flight, I love the shapes their little bodies make.

22 hummingbird

22 hummingbird

23 hummingbird

23 hummingbird

4. parrot – I drew this one from one of the photos I had taken of some green parrots at the zoo. We were looking up into the trees so it’s a slightly strange angle.

24 green parrot

24 green parrot

5. hare – they have loner ears and legs than rabbits with that startled stare that means they’re ready to run.

25 hare

25 hare

6. kingfisher –Usually I would draw them sitting but I wanted to draw them moving so this time it’s going for a dive. I like the way this one turned out, it has plenty of detail but it’s not too fussy.

26 kingfisher

26 kingfisher

7. tree frog – took a photo of this little guy a few weeks ago, he was just hanging around.

Note to self, not all papers are created equal. I’m using paper recycled form the inside of last years Christmas wrapping and most of it has been good quality but this one was far more absorbent and didn’t really suit the technique I used, also it drained all of the ink out of the pen!

27 frog

27 frog

Although I have found the prompts this year hard I have seen some fantastic interpretations by other people, maybe I need to try harder to make them work, something to think about.

Here’s a link for week 1 , week 2 and week 3 just in-case you’re interested.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Note: If you want to know more a link to information on inktober and what it is all about is here.

Inktober 2019 Week 3

14 fish amongst the lily leaves

14 fish amongst the lily leaves

Hello peeps how is it going?
It’s week three of inktober, wow this month is going fast!

So far I’ve mostly managed to keep up, there’s been the odd “I don’t know what to draw” moment and at the last minute I think of something. I could use the prompts but found them so uninspiring so I’ll just plod on as usual.

1. Fish amongst the lily leaves – (above) there’s the beginning of an idea here that maybe I’ll look at later.

2. Horned owl – I’ve drawn a similar owl before on white paper, it’s interesting to see the difference the toned paper makes.

15 horned owl

15 horned owl

3. Hornbill – I love these cantankerous birds, the zoo is trying to breed them but the hornbills have other ideas.

16 hornbill

16 hornbill

4. Monarch butterfly – three butterflies fluttering. It was fun to draw them with the wings in different positions.

17 monarch butterfly

17 monarch butterfly

5. Penguin – at the zoo we have Humboldt penguins, they love nothing more than showing off to the children swimming right up to the glass.

18 penguin

18 penguin

6. Sparrow – I know I drew a sparrow last week but I have taken loads of photos of them and I really like drawing them. Who knows maybe I’ll draw more sparrows’ hehehe

19 little sparrow

19 little sparrow

7. Dancing cranes – there was a program on TV about Japanese wild life, when I saw the cranes I decided I needed to draw some hehehe. I’m sure had I thought of it I would have painted some with my Chinese brushes last year. “Future me” may try this, once inktober is over of course.

20 dancing cranes

20 dancing cranes

I like most of the little drawings I made this week even with the phaffing about deciding what to draw. I am starting to miss colour now and can’t wait to get the watercolours out again, “Soon my pretties”.

Here’s a link for week 1 and week 2 just in-case you’re interested.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Till next time, have fun x

Note: If you want to know more a link to information on inktober and what it is all about is here.