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In Context—Getting Down Some Thoughts

A full spread sketch in the largest Hahnemühle Nostalgie sketchbook. I used a Bienfang Magenta watercolor brush pend to start and did the comb and wattles and area around the eye. A little different approach for me because I usually start with the eye. Then I decided to paint some of the features, add color to the background, and also add some stenciling detail to the background.

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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Slip Sliding Away—Distress Crayons

Above: Quick sketch of Dick to test Distress Crayons—read more below. I know some of you can’t absorb another “eyebrow” update, but hey, I deal with them every day! Besides, now that we don’t have any pups and Gert is disintegrating (a rubber wasting disease of some sort I suppose) Dick is the most readily available […]

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The Flexbook SKETCHBOOK by Prat: A Review

Above: Flyleaf page (black) and title page of a Flexbook Sketchbook. There is type set on this page where the eye of the finch is located. (Typically I paint over these annoyances.) There is also a place to write your name and return information at the bottom center of the page. Click on the image […]

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Project Friday: Using What’s Left on Your Palette

Above: Sketch using a black Stabilo All (which is watersoluble) on Strathmore 500 series Mixed Media Paper (7.75 x 9.75 inches). Left over gouache and Montana acrylic markers were also used. Today’s Project Friday is the perfect follow up to last week’s Project Friday—experiments in making neutrals. Of course you have to do that project […]

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Project Friday: No Black Paint

Above: 6 x 6 inch page in a wirebound journal. Stonehenge gray paper. Rubberstamp ink (background) with gouache painting of a Pentel Pocket Brush Pen. This is a page from my 2015 Fake Journal. I began with a very light pencil outline. It might even have been orange pencil. I mixed blacks using Dark Indigo […]

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Pre-Fair and Post-Fair Preparation—Materials Experiments Part 2: Kilimanjaro Watercolor Paper

Above: Quick sketch of a sheep using a Platinum Carbon Black felt-tipped pen, light washes of gouache, and Montana Marker. (12 x 9 inches, Kilimanjaro Watercolor journal, wire bound on the 12 inch side.) Originally, while getting ready to go to the 2015 Minnesota State Fair, I thought that I would like to take real […]

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Pre-Fair and Post-Fair Preparation—Materials Experiments Part 1: Strathmore 400 Series Printmaking Paper

Left: Pigeon sketch on Strathmore 400 Series Printmaking paper (5 x 7 inches) with Platinum Refillable Felt-Tipped Brush Pen and gouache. It has been a busy summer. I wanted to have my “Drawing Practice: Drawing Live Subjects in Public” class before the Minnesota State Fair in hopes that local students could take the techniques to […]

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Why I Embrace Messes on My Journal Pages

Above: While watching a TV show one night the excellent actress Jean Marsh was dying and sick in bed and it struck me as an interesting angle to work. I had already scribbled some yellow Montana acrylic marker on the page. I had a red watercolor brush pen I wanted to work with so I […]

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One More Loose Sketch: Grabbing the Impulse To Sketch

Left: Another A3 sheet of the Fabriano ecological drawing paper. Pentel Brush Pen with Golden QOR watercolors (Burnt Sienna and Indanthrene Blue) with Montana Marker for background. An 8-minute sketch made while watching the new NCIS with Scott Bakula. (I won't be cutting this piece up for collage as I discuss below. I like it […]

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