The Ghost Series

“Ghost” Watercolor & Gouache on Hot Press

I recently had a conversation with a fellow artist on Twitter about adding gouache to watercolor paintings. Honestly, I’d tried to avoid the own subject in my mind because the whole idea of adding another medium to an already established medium seemed complicated. What colors would I use? Why? What could gouache give me that watercolor couldn’t? This particular artist said he would use white gouache to add highlights, and that made so much sense! I suddenly had a flood of ideas, but one in particular kept pestering me:

What if I added white gouache to Payne’s Grey watercolor, and let the white drip down to make a ghost? I imagined the gouache flowing, trickling down the deep blue-gray shade, giving my ghost eerie tendrils, and I couldn’t wait to give it a try!

The results were way cooler than I could have imagined. Continue reading “The Ghost Series”

When You’re Too Scared to Draw

The past 1-2 weeks were difficult for me. Every time I sketched something out, I put the unfinished piece on my easel, and then it  would just sit there. Because I was scared to go further, to pull out the Micron pen and draw the “final” draft. I was scared to mess up, to make a problem mark somewhere, to overdo it.

I was scared to fail. Continue reading “When You’re Too Scared to Draw”

Hatching & Cross-Hatching

Every now and then I’ll practice something that may or may not make it into my future illustrations. Because I learn. Even if I never use it again, I learn.

I’ve practiced hatching & cross-hatching in the past, and it didn’t make it far into my artwork. However recently I picked up a few illustration books at the library and one of them discussed hatching and cross-hatching–as well as other shading methods–and I decided to play around with it again. This time I think it has stuck. My artwork is evolving again; I can see it! While I do like the “clean” look of my most recent work, I also like the weathered quality provided by the hatching. In fact, it seems to bring forward the part of me that loves all things eerie: foggy mornings, ghost stories, fall wind, dusty photographs.

And I think that, maybe, hatching will help grow yet another branch of style for me.

At the time, I seem to like the “quick sketch” look, as I usually do, but I want to work on cleaner lines with my hatching.

Maybe it’s because I’m an info junkie, but practicing the basics is super fun for me. And because I returned to these “basics,” I’ve already sketched out four new pieces!

Is hatching here to stay? Only time will tell.

Prima Watercolor Confections: Tropicals

Looking for fresh colors, atypical from the basic reds and greens I’d been limiting myself to for so long, I discovered the joy that is Prima Watercolor Confections. They have many different sets with beautiful colors, all with unique themes such as: Decadent Pies, Odyssey, and The Classics.

The first colors to catch my eye were in the set, “Tropicals.” They seemed to have cooler undertones, and richer pinks and blues. I decided to ask for them for my birthday. Continue reading “Prima Watercolor Confections: Tropicals”