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Drawing Practice: Two Things to Try When You’re Sick

We all catch a cold, come down with the flu, sprain a muscle or two, even break a bone now and then. But it’s still important to keep up with your drawing habit. I had a particularly rough time keeping up my daily practice the past few weeks. A cold went to bronchitis and my […]

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A Slip Case for My 2017 International Fake Journal Month Journal

This year for the April 2017 International Fake Journal Month celebration I created a journal of 30 loose card sheets. Each sheet contained the sketch from one day in the month.  To contain these sketches I decided that I would make a simple slip case using pre-painted watercolor paper. I decided to use a case […]

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Useful Tools: The Molotow Grafx Art Masking Liquid Pump Marker

If you paint in watercolor, inks, or acrylics, chances are at some point you’ve tried to mask something off so that you could retain the white of your paper, or an earlier color that you had laid down.  Artists use lots of products for masking—tape is the obvious one, especially if you want to create […]

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When Do You Stop? When Is A Drawing Finished

I think the number one question I get from students is: “When do I know my drawing is finished?” Most people aren’t going to like the answer. You’ll know after you’ve taken a ton of sketches past the point of no return. Here’s the thing, you’re asking a question that involves choices both stylistic choices […]

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Using Photoshop to Quickly Change Background Colors in a Scan

Sometimes you finish a sketch and you wonder, what would happen if I did “this” or “that.” But maybe you don’t want to try “this” or “that” because you don’t want to lose what you already have. I tend not to use Photoshop to change my sketches just because I prefer to work with natural […]

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Making A Paper Hinge To Adhere Loose Pieces Into Your Journal

  A couple weeks ago I posted a journal piece which used a paper hinge to add a loose, double-sided scrap of Stonehenge Kraft into my journal. I posted the image composited so you could see both sides at once, but this confused some readers. Today I’m posting a short video showing me actually creating […]

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Hair—Something I Love To Sketch

One of the things that attracts my eye to a possible face to sketch is the hair of that person. I like it when people get inventive with their hairstyles. It’s a little bit of living vicariously for me, because as you might know I haven’t changed my hairstyle since I was in my twenties!  […]

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In Context—I’ll Sketch On Any Bit of Paper

I suppose you could call it a doodle, but I think of it as a sketch. It isn’t in my journal, it’s in my day planner, which sits beside me on the computer table. One of my students alerted me to a new Peregrine nest cam and I turned it on. I grabbed what was […]

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Making a Simple Brush Holder for Your Travel Brushes

This year at the Fair I wanted to use real brushes with water, not water brushes, when painting.  Since I stand when I sketch it meant I had to have a way to put all my supplies and journal on one work surface. Dick and I made up a prototype “travel table” using plastic corrugated […]

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Fitting More Pans in a Square Metal Palette from Schmincke

As the Minnesota State Fair approaches of course I’ve been testing pigments and making choices on what gear I’ll be taking to the Fair for sketching. Today I’m posting about adapting my favorite metal palette box to contain more pans of paint—because sometimes you need more pans. I’ve been a fan of the Schmincke metal […]

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