Inktober 2018 Week 4 Final Week And Thoughts

inktober fish day 29

Inktober floaty fish day 29

Hi there, and welcome, here are the last three paintings for Inktober.

29 – The image above. Three floaty fish. For this painting I followed along with a Youtube video by Henry Li who has an excellent channel filled with tutorials and information about Chinese brush painting.

30 – Panda (below). With just a few brush strokes I had painted a panda, who knew this was even possible?

inktober day 30 panda

Inktober day 30 panda

31 – Iris. I love iris flowers but had no idea how to approach painting them. Two of the books I’m using had different instructions for iris so I mixed them up and used both. I love how this turned out and am definitely going to try this with watercolour.

inktober day 31 iris

Inktober day 31 iris

During October I made some cards, it seemed like a good time to practise Chinese brush painting. They were both painted with watercolour and not ink.
This one was a get well card painted while I was painting little Chinese style birds.

get well card two little birds

A get well card with two little birds

This one was a birthday card painted while I was painting sparrows on a bamboo branch. Both cards were inspired by birds painted in week three.

birthday card with 2 sparrows

A birthday card with two little sparrows


Here’s inktober at a glance, you can see the original blog posts for each week in the links below the image.

inktober 2018 Chinese brush painting

Inktober week 1
Inktober week 2
Inktober week 3
Inktober week 4

I can’t believe just how much I’ve learned this month; this style of painting was completely new to me and I wasn’t even sure I would be able to paint anything post – worthy at all.

Although I posted 31 images (one for each day of the month.) I practised quite a bit each day. I counted all of the paper used throughout the month and found I had used 157 A4 pieces of paper. Yes I know a weird thing to do but it interested me to find out how much practice and how many mistakes (so many) to achieve something I was happy with.

157 practise pages

A little stack of 157 practise pages, I’ll have to find a box to keep them in.

I was using cheap paper and had no problems messing up and starting again, I don’t think I feel quite so free using more expensive paper.

I decided to try Chinese brush painting because
1. It fascinates me to see the skill someone has to make very simple brush strokes into something totally amazing.
2. If I could even learn the basic techniques it would improve my drawing and watercolour painting.
3. I already had the tools to do this style of painting and I would rather learn to use the tools I have than buy shiny new ones. The brushes aren’t best quality but they worked well enough.

Quick summary: I had the most fun Inktober ever learning new skills and techniques. Painting everything from chrysanthemums, birds to irises and has given me the confidence to paint things I wouldn’t have even tried before.
I have lots of ideas now I just need time to paint them all hehehe.

I would like to thank to everyone for the love, support and encouragement this month you’ve all been amazing!

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


Inktober 2018 Week 4

inkktober day 22 lotus Inkktober day 22 lotus with black ink.

Hi there, and welcome to week 4 of inktober.

link to  what Inktober is here

If you would like to check out previous weeks
Inktober week 1
Inktober week 2
Inktober week 3

I thought I’d be flagging at this point but I’m still finding this style of painting fascinating.

Starting the week with lotus. I had seen pictures but had no instructions in the books I was using and I really wanted to paint some. I found one or two youtube videos and after watching them a few times then set about painting them.

22 – Black and white lotus flower and leaves. (see above)
23 – I added some colour to this one on the flower. I’m really struggling with the leaves they’re huge.

inkktober day lotus 23 Inkktober day lotus 23

24 – After reading in the books that there should be some sort of insect or bird to bring life to the painting I decided to practice painting bugs, butterflies, dragonflies etc

inktober insects day 24 Inktober insects day 24

25 – A lotus flower leaves and a butterfly, using the insects I had been practising the day before.

inkktober day 25 lotus and a butterfly Inkktober day 25 lotus and a butterfly

26 – Another lotus. I’m still struggling with the leaves so I painted three this time, (I need the practice). I also think that dragonfly could have been a bit bigger,

inkktober day 26 lotus and a dragonfly Inkktober day 26 lotus and a dragonfly

27 – Kingfisher, I love the simplicity of this little guy.

inktober kingfisher day 27 Inktober kingfisher day 27

28 – Fish, I think it’s a goldfish, I gave him some weeds and stones for a little background.

inkober day 28 fish Inkober day 28 fish

Not all of the paintings this week had proper instructions, they were pictures in the books I was using but they turned out pretty well in the end.

Almost there now, just a few days left then it’s all over for another year.

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

Inktober 2018 Week 3

Chinese birds on a blossom branch day 15

Inkktober Chinese birds on a blossom branch, Day 15.

Hi there, and welcome to week 3 of inktober.

This week seems to be the week of birds,
15-16  Random birds, the book doesn’t say what kind they are, I suppose you could just change the colours and the shape would work for many little birds.

15 – The birds above were painted on a blossom branch as it gives them a place to perch.
16 – Birds on a line, I was just practising the strokes so instead of the birds floating around in mid-air I painted a quick line underneath to represent the branch.

Chinese birds on a line day 16

Inkktober Chinese birds on a line, day 16.

17-21 Sparrows, these were so much fun to do! I found a picture from The beginner’s guide to painting: Birds and Insects. Judging by the page I have found I definitely need to check this book out.

17 – I painted a small block of birds on a page; they were all in different positions, perfect for adding to other paintings.

Inkktober 9 sparrows day 17

Inkktober 9 sparrows, Day 17.

Then all I needed was something for them to perch on, I picked bamboo with their flexible stems, I thought they would make good perches.

18 – A small part of a bigger picture, this was the only part I liked so I cropped it in the computer.

inktober sparrow day 18

Inktober sparrow, Day 18.

19 – Four sparrows all painted with two tones of ink. It’s all the same ink; I just add more water to dilute it to a paler tone.

sparrows on bamboo in black & Gray ink day 19

Sparrows on bamboo in black & gray ink, Day 19.

20 – Two little sparrows. I’m mixing my inks here and it makes quite a reasonable brown.

sparrows on bamboo day 20

Sparrows on bamboo, Day 20.

21 – Two more sparrows on bamboo. The beauty of having all of these birds in so many positions you can pick one or more and it is a completely different painting.

Inktober sparrows on bamboo, Day 21.

Inktober sparrows on bamboo, Day 21.

I could paint these little sparrows all day long and I have many more practice pieces. I’m also sure that it would be very boring for everybody to see but me hehehe, so I’m going to move on and see what else I can find in my books.

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

link to Inktober information here

If you would like to check out previous weeks
Inktober week 1
Inktober week 2


Inktober 2018 Week 2

inkktober day 14 swallows 2

Inkktober day 14 swallows bonus illustration.

Hi there how are you?
I’m continuing on with my Chinese brush painting for Inktober week 2. Week 1 is here

Day 8 & 9 Chrysanthemums – two more to finish the trio from last week, adding more flower heads with each painting.

inktober chrysanthemum day 8

Inktober chrysanthemum day 8

inktober chrysanthemum day 9

Inktober chrysanthemum day 9

Day 10 – 12 Plum blossom – in the book some flower heads are more of an outline but these are the full petal blossoms. I had a lot more trouble painting the branches, it’s quite hard to paint them and make them look organic.

inkktober day 10 plum blossom

Inkktober day 10 plum blossom

inkktober day 11 plum blossom

Inkktober day 11 plum blossom

inkktober day 12 plum blossom

Inkktober day 12 plum blossom

This is the last of the four main exercises all made with either Indian ink or as for the last 5 images sumi-e ink. I’ll spend the rest of the month hopping about the various books doing the exercises that I like the look of and even add a little colour.

Day 13 Chrysanthemum painted in a different style to the others, slightly more realistic, taken from the book by Cheng Yan. Look at that lovely yellow, whoot!

inktober chrysanthemum day 13

Inktober chrysanthemum day 13

Day 14 Sparrows – these sparrows are made out of a few basic strokes, once you get the hang of how to hold the brush they’re not too difficult and they’re loads of fun to paint. There are one or two more birdie positions in the book but I haven’t quite learned how to paint them yet. (Baby steps hehehe ). The bonus illustration at the top of the post is also of some sparrows.

inkktober day 14 swallows 1

Inkktober day 14 swallows 1

Traditionally the colours used in Chinese brush painting are watercolours but since it’s inktober I’m sticking with ink. The colours I have are limited to black – (Indian or sumi-e ink), yellow, blue and red – (pergamano ink), I don’t really like the pergamano ink because it contains a lot of shellac, it stains and if it’s not washed off tools, brushes etc. its stuck there for ever! I need to use it up so that’s what I’m using.

It’s been an interesting week and I feel like I’m learning a lot.

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

Inktober 2018 Week 1

inktober 2018 bamboo

Inktober 2018 bamboo


Hi all, wow are you?

It’s that time of year again, inktober. As I said last week I wasn’t really going to participate this year due to a case of the bleah’s. Then I hit on the idea of doing something completely new to me, Chinese brush painting, I’m so glad I did.

covers of the books I'm using

Here are the covers of the books I’m using.

know very little about this subject so I’m using three library books for reference.
Chinese brush by Jane Evans.
Not a bad book for a beginner – gives stroke direction and basic strokes needed for the first exercises, lots of lovely colour illustrations, some advanced stuff at the back.

Chinese brush painting traditional & contemporary using ink and water-soluble media by Cheng Yan.
A beautiful book with loads of lovely colour illustrations but not a book for beginners.

Sumi~e by Hakuho Hirayama
This book has no bells and whistles, no shiny coloured illustrations, just good basic information on brush strokes and why or where to use them, A very good beginner’s book.

There are four basic seasonal objects from nature to paint called the four honourable gentlemen.
Bamboo (summer)
Chrysanthemum (autumn)
Plum blossom (winter)
Chinese orchid (spring)
For some reason all of the books do these lessons in different orders!? These exercises teach everything you need to know to learn all of the strokes needed for Chinese brush painting.

Top painting is a bonus bamboo – an extra bamboo that was painted but not posted, I quite like it so I put it here.
Days 1-3 Bamboo – a few different arrangements to start off with

day 01 inktober 2018 bamboo

Day 01 inktober 2018 bamboo

day 02 2018 inktober bamboo

Day 02 inktober 2018 bamboo

day 03 inktober 2018 bamboo

Day 03 inktober 2018 bamboo

Days 4-6 Chinese orchids – again some different arrangements

day 04 inktober 2018 orchid

Day 04 inktober 2018 orchid. Light flowers and dark flowers

day 05 inktober 2018 orchid

Day 05 inktober 2018 orchid

day 06 inktober 2018 orchid

Day 06 inktober 2018 orchid

Day 07 Chrysanthemum – so many petals. To be honest though it’s just different lengths of the same stroke so when you’ve learned the stroke it’s not too difficult.

day 07 inktober chrysanthemum

Day 07 inktober chrysanthemum

Traditional paper for Chinese painting is usually rice paper, I don’t have any and reading the books they say any absorbent paper like news print is fine. I’m using a mixture of news print copy paper and some kids drawing paper that I’ve had knocking about for years, they are all very absorbent and I have found the kids drawing paper works very well for the bamboo.

I’m working in black ink at the moment, then once I have learned the brush strokes I’ll think about adding some colour. Chinese brush painting is usually done with watercolour but since it’s inktober I will try to keep it to coloured ink for now and see if I can make it work

It’s fun to take part in this challenge and also a lot of fun checking out other people’s inky efforts. There is a lot of amazing artwork going on around the internets.

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

The End Of Inktober 2017 Whoot!

#inktober 2017-30-31

The last two #inktober 2017 drawings

Hey ho folks, how are you?

We did it, inktober is over for another year Whoot!
I managed to keep to the prompts for all but one of them because mysteriously I had nothing for that day hehe.

Prompt and interpretations
Day 30 found – as in they found the treasure.
Day 31 mask – a mask

During inktober I have managed to fill up half of a sketch book (or there abouts) 27 pages both sides, normally it takes me four or five months so it has definitely made me draw more. Some of the prompts were a bit random so I was pushed way out of my comfort zone quite a few times which is a good thing I suppose, it does show up the weakness in my drawing capabilities though. Obviously this means I need to do lots more drawing to gain these skills.

I used my dip pens for most if not all drawings and this gave me some things to think about:

    1. I hold a pen far too tightly which inhibits the flow of pen movement, I need to loosen up a bit.
    2. Turning the paper around more means I can produce a smoother line.
    3. Dip pens run out quickly so make sure to dip before putting pen to paper each time.
    4. dip pens are messy, watch out for the splotts.
inktober 2017 mouse idea sketches

This is one of the pages from my sketch book for day 26 squeak. Theyre not finished (some of them are a bit wonky) or coloured in, I just needed an idea of what a mouse looked like. I chose the little black one from the second page, he was kind of cute.

Having to post something every day was a bit scary especially if the thing I’d drawn wasn’t something I thought good enough for posting.

Every day I got to draw lots of things I wouldn’t normally draw.

There was some amazing art made by other people, it’s always enjoyable clicking on the hashtag and finding out how everyone else interpreted the prompt.

I got to use supplies that usually sit in a draw gathering dust and expand my skills.

So was inktober fun? Yes, yes it was well worth the effort. Congratulations to everyone who participated and thanks. You can see all the inktobers here on instagram or wk1 wk2 wk3 wk4 here on WordPress

Thanks for stopping by today. Till next time, have fun x

Inktober 2017 23 – 29 And Some Acorns

inktober 2017 23-29

inktober 2017 23-29

Hi there, how are you?

We’re on week four of inktober, (nearly finished), just two more to go! I’m still sticking with the prompts, which has surprised me as some words were a bit of a struggle. I’m also still using the dip pens although I did change out the nib to a more flexible one. It’s helping with the line variation.

Prompt and interpretations
Day 23 juicy – orange
Day 24 blind – mole
Day 25 ship – an airship
Day 26 squeak – little mouse
Day 27 climb – lizard climbing
Day 28 fall – (autumn) acorns and oak leaves
Day 29 united – a bridge (uniting both banks of the river)


Working out the prompt in my sketch book.

These are some acorns I’ve drawn in my sketchbook as I tried to work out what to draw for day 28 (fall) and decided to colour them in, I’m missing colour at the moment as everything I’m doing is black and white or very limited in colour.


This is the image I chose for the prompt. It looks very different in the picture below in black and white.



If you would like to see all of the inktober’s for this month you can check them out here on my instagram, fluff.n.nonsence

There’s just two days left and then it’s all over for another year so I think I’m going to make it to the end, next week maybe I’ll have a think about what the effects have been and what I’ve learned during the month.

Thanks for stopping by today. Till next time, have fun x

#Inktober 2017 16 – 22 Trying To Vary The Lines

#inktober 2017 16-22

#inktober 2017 numbers 16-22 indian ink and dip pen.

Hello folks, how are you?

It’s week three of inktober, still sticking with the prompts, and good grief some of them are challenging.

Prompt and Interpretations
Day 16 fat – a caterpillar
Day 17 graceful – swan
Day 18 filthy – muddy boots
Day 19 cloud – stylized cloud
Day 20 deep – bunnies’ deep underground
Day 21 furious – bulls head
Day 22 trail – snail plus trail

There are always one or two each week that I’m not fussed with, either the prompt didn’t excite me or the picture didn’t come out as well as I wanted it to. On these days I have to look back at what I had intended the goal for this month to be. Then I do the picture post it up on instagram regardless of how much I like it, otherwise I’ll drive myself crazy with inner critic issues and nothing will get done!

I had decided I would use my dip pens and ink, these are not tools I’m very familiar with but since I have them I wanted to try to learn how to use them. Normally I draw something in my sketch book and use a brush pen for the lines, then when I’m happy with it transfer the image lightly in pencil to the book I’m keeping all the inktober’s in. They are then inked with Indian ink and a dip pen.

#inktober day 22 trail

Drawn with a pencil. lined with a dip pen and indian ink. Click this picture to view on instagram.

You can see the difference in lines between the brush pen and dip pen in these two snails here, I am getting some variance in line now with a dip pen, it’s not brilliant but it is better, I still prefer the brush pen at the moment.

snail trail sketch

Drawn with a pencil, lined with a brush pen and coloured with watercolour

There’s a little over a week to go now so hopefully we’ll make it through (inspiredtangle and I are doing inktober together)

Thanks for stopping by today. Till next time, have fun x