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Hesitation: Reluctant to Start a New Project

  Recently one of my students wrote to me that she was hesitant about starting a new project. Hesitancy springs from a lot of issues and conditions. Hesitancy can arise as resistance and part of the ongoing barrage of negative talk you might experience from your internal critic. It can also exist because you have […]

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End of Year Evaluations: Setting Goals and Projects

Something I talk to my students about a lot, whether it’s in a drawing class like “Drawing Practice” or now on my Patreon site is the importance of setting goals and projects that support those goals. It all begins with an honest evaluation of where your skills and your goals are right now. I was […]

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Flood Debris Part 3—Rubber Stamp Masking

From the 1980s until November 2016 I gathered a rather large rubber stamp collection. I used the rubber stamps for mail art and as art tools in my journaling and art. While I gave most of the stamps (and storage boxes and index) to a young stamper in 2016 (in a move I realize now […]

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Brush Forensics

A few years ago I was asked to create an illustrated love letter for a show of such letters at a local gallery. At the time I wasn’t traveling much. For me a really good love letter requires time and distance to ferment. I chose instead to write a love note to Dick about the […]

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For the Love of Negative Space

I hear all sorts of things from my journaling students. “How much negative space should I leave on my journal spread?” “How much space should surround my focal point?” “How much text and how much more illustration should I put on my page spread?” “How should I arrange these 5 things on my page spread […]

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Liner Brush Test Sheet

Most of  you might not want to wait until I finish testing all the liner and rigger brushes I’m going to be testing to hear which is my favorite. Frankly I don’t know how long this project is going to take me.  So in the interim I’m posting my initial test sheets (which are two […]

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Direct Brush Painting with a Liner Brush

I admit it. I love experimenting. I had a new paint from Schmincke—Ocean Grey. I had a wonderful face reference from Sktchy. And I had a LINER BRUSH! Note: There are liner brushes and rigger brushes. They are and aren’t interchangeable. Both are long-tipped. If you want a long brush to apply paint it might […]

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Try, Try Again

I watch the British Police drama “Vera.” (In the US you can see it on PBS, but awhile back I started watching it on Britbox and think the episodes come in a bit earlier.)  I watch it because I’m totally in love with Brenda Blethyn. She’s so amazing. But as I’ve already discussed on my […]

Here's a close up view to show some of the color pencil lines.

When Is It a Good Time to Sketch in Pencil?

Usually I answer the question “When is it a good time to sketch in pencil?” simply by saying “Never.” I reside in the camp of, sketch in ink, live with the odd-off strokes, the pentimento. Use it all to train your eye. But sometimes you want really smooth lines, or don’t want to risk missing […]

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Why Keep Sketching the Same Subject?

A friend of mine once said he couldn’t understand how I could draw the same subject over and over. I do that a lot. Most notably daily drawings for 4 and a half years of my dog Dottie.  But my life is full of drawing the same subject over and over. Life drawing models I […]

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