Currently Browsing: April 2017 10 articles

A five-minute pencil sketch  of Dick as he sat on the couch in the TV room. I just grabbed my mechanical pencil with a very thick, soft lead, and a piece of scratch paper that was handy. (I can't even tell you which kind of paper because the sketch disappeared after scanning—I think I might have made a to-do list on the back…

Use Every Free Moment for Sketching.

OK, everyone knows you can’t use EVERY free moment for sketching. But you can grab a lot of them and bend them to paper and pencil or pen… I find that even if it’s late at night I can usually get one more quick sketch fitted into the day. On this evening I did a […]

Quick sketches of some Bosc Pears with a Pentel dye-based brush pen. A Niji water brush was used to draw out the shading from the water-soluble ink lines. (All in the largest portrait Hahnemühle Nostalgie Sketchbook—the paper is a dream to work on with the PPBP and its cousins.)

What Do You Have on Hand?

It has been hectic here lately. I notice I’ve been getting grumpy. It’s not because I’m busy. I love being busy. It’s because I miss the Pentel Pocket Brush Pen (and the Pentel Colorbrush Pen cousins). All my projects involve other media right now. They leave little time in the day for my tired eyes to […]

Above: Sketch of a sleeping pig, pen and watercolor on a 9 x 12 inch watercolor board. During class you'll see me demonstrate how to work with pen and watercolor in close quarters even at crowded events like the Minnesota State Fair. (The demos include active animals so that you can see how it's possible to catch a likeness even when your subject is moving.)

There’s Still Time to Sign Up for Drawing Practice 2017

The 2017 session of my popular class “Drawing Practice: Drawing Live Subjects in Public” begins on April, 30. Registration for this class closes on April 29, 2017, at 11 p.m. Click on this link. This will be the last time that I offer this class with daily teacher participation. If you would like to get […]

A magenta Prismacolor pencil and black, Roasted French Ochre watercolor and white gouache sketch on Speckletone cardstock 6.25 x 9.25 inches (remnants from making greeting cards).

I Didn’t Know It But I Was Starting A New Series

Often the idea for a new series comes to us by accident. We’re working (that’s when the muse can best find us) and things we’re working with combine in new ways, jog a memory, present a challenge, and bingo a new series pops into our minds. That’s what happened at the end of March this […]

Additional testing notes for rubber-stamp inks.

Searching for a New Rubber-Stamp Ink

I use pigmented rubber-stamp ink in my artwork. It’s a crucial part of what I like to do—creating surface texture with stamped lines and words: a type of visual collage without glue. (Don’t get me started on my problems finding a new glue.) It’s hard to believe I’ve been looking for a stamp ink replacement […]

In a small landscape Hahnemühle Nostalgie journal I quickly sketched this snow pile with a fiber-tipped ink pen and washes pulled off my Pentel Brush pen with the Niji water brush.

Why I Love Snow Piles

I love snow piles because their changing shapes and volumes are fun to sketch. They are also, even in the dead of winter, a reminder that spring is coming. This winter I wasn’t able to sketch as many snow piles as usual, but as spring came on and the odd 70 degree day (followed by below freezing […]

During Bill Mahr's political talk show I did additional experiments. I found that quickly getting down general lines for the hands allowed me to be more "judicious" about placement with my bolder lines and create a less fussier form.

Experimenting with Line Quality And Working Method

Typically I like to work with one pen throughout an image and get a variety of line types from that pen by the way I angle the pen and the pressure I use. In the past couple of years, because of approaches I’ve tried during life drawing co-op settings where I take a larger variety […]

9 x 12 inch Kilimanjaro Watercolor paper journal page. Brush pen and watercolor. The turkey was a yard visitor, the quotation was from a movie I was watching that night. Do they mean anything together? No, but I wanted to get the quotation down as I watched the movie. I knew I wanted to laugh and think about it some more. And I have.

Journaling Superstition #20: Your Text and Your Image Need to “Make Sense” Together

Students tell me all the time, “I can’t write in my journal, I don’t have anything profound to say.” Or they worry, “I don’t want to write on my pages because my handwriting is so bad.” Or they fret that, “What I’m thinking about right now and want to write about doesn’t have anything to […]

This is a pen and watercolor sketch made from life at the Minnesota State Fair in 2016. In class you'll see me demonstrate sketching live animals at the Fair!

Drawing Practice: Drawing Live Subjects in Public—Class Begins April 30, 2017

Do you wish you had a daily drawing practice? Do you wonder how to approach sketching live subjects? Do you want to join in the fun of sketch outs but you feel self-conscious sketching in public? Is there a nagging voice in your mind telling you that your sketches always fail? Beginning April 30 I […]

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More Life Drawing in the Hahnemühle Nostalgie Sketchbook

Phyllis sitting at her desk, but holding her coloring book in her lap, and coloring with her Tombow dual tipped markers. (She gives those markers a two-thumbs up for was of coloring and quick application of color.) Staedtler Pigment Liner and washes of Pentel ColorBrush Black ink. I didn’t remember to include the above image […]

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