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I had this weird idea ...
Doing more digital stuff. These are kids on the playground, all in different stages of being fiddled with, re-drawn, edited, etc.
Having fun working out their outfits, and making them individual people - not just generic kids.
These will be in color, but I would like them to work as line art as well. So I will save one version as line art before I get into the coloring. I'm using Photoshop and my Wacom. I used to do this with ink and watercolor - I love being able to make changes with digital art! Not sure what "look" I'm going to do for the color - part of the fun of experimenting!
A while back I said I was going to do a whole children's book portfolio in a new digital pencil style. Wellllll, it takes me a while to get around to things sometimes, but I do, eventually.
Here is a new test piece, where I've partially copied an old piece that was done with black colored pencil. (I do have an old test piece I started in color a long time ago, which you can see here
. Yes, I've had this idea in the works for a while!)
This first piece is the original in colored pencil.
And this is digital.
I'm working in layers. Here's how it looks with one of the layers 'turned off'.
I'm playing will ALL of the controls for brush and texture size, opacity, flow, 'jitter', some stuff I don't even understand - whatever there is in the control panels. I'm using Photoshop, a Wacom tablet and stylus, and am using the stylus just like I would a colored pencil, building up the values slowly.
I think I feel confident enough now to start a whole NEW piece, and try this idea out and see how I do.
OK, that's a weird title, I know. But did it make you look?
I am still here, just haven't been blogging. I was obsessed with getting this 'drawings of knitting' thing worked out, and I finally, finally, did. And I'll tell you about that in a bit.
First though, I'm working on a new little colored pencil series.
I love the way pieces look at this stage. I'm doing a series of 4 of these, and am just doing all the wrappers first. Then I'll do the 'tops', and you'll see what they are! I think its a kind of fun idea.
I'm using Luminance and Pablos (both Caran d'ache) so far, on Stonehenge. They'll all be 6" x 6".
OK, so, the knitting thing.
I figured it out! I finally got a drawing that I liked. I used Photoshop, and hand drew with a stylus on a Wacom tablet, each stitch. Yes, really. So, enlarged, you can see that all the stitches are not perfect, and look sort of 'hand knit'.
But then, reduced down, it looks pretty even.
I figured out how to do the "replace color" thing, so I can make any color combination I want.
I made a whole bunch of little 2 x 2 cards, and put them in a new etsy shop - http://www.draw1knit1.etsy.com
Then I got fancy and started making patterns!
My first argyle. Some brain cells got used up on this one, I can tell you. But once I could do this, I knew I'd nailed it.
I opened a new shop on Zazzle
, and have made some stuff there. I really love these little postage stamps.
And I'm venturing out into some other colors and patterns.
Christmas is in the works, and I have some fabric test swatches coming in the mail, so hopefully those will work out and I will have fabrics available as well. I'm excited!
I've started a blog and Facebook page just for all of this, so from now on will post all my updates there. I will probably do a quick mention of it here, once in a while, but the more meaty stuff will be over there.
Its all very new, and the shops need a lot of time and work to get them well-stocked. I plan to just keep building them, bit by bit, as I have the time. I could use a little love on Facebook, so if you feel like "liking" my page there, I'd be grateful. (I need 25 Likes to be able to take the goofy numbers off the end of the url.)
So that's it for me, for now. I'm busy! I want to get these mystery cp pieces finished, and have some childrens book work to do. There is just the wee, slightest, nip in the air today, and I am feeling the urge to start knitting more too! (You know I have a tiny knitting shop on etsy, right? http://www.tweedycrab.etsy.com
. Yeah, ADD or something, I know.
Anyways. I can't believe August is almost over. The kids are all going back to school. And the A/C does not kick on in the middle of the night anymore. I will be able to wear socks again soon! The things a person looks forward to ...
This is what I've been doing. I'm not even going to tell you how much time I've spent trying to get this idea into a workable thing. In my head, it is just the most genius idea. In reality, on paper ... well that's another story. Let's just say, its getting there. But has a ways to go.
I started with digital drawings of knitting, done with Photoshop and a stylus and Wacom tablet. Hand drawn knitting, one stitch at a time.
Experimented with scale, brush texture, how much "hand drawn-ness" there should be, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. until my brain exploded a little bit. (There are many more examples than what you see here. Many, many, many more.)
Then settled on one look, and figured out a repeat, and did some designs. (Again, this is one, of about 12 zillion examples.)
But something wasn't gelling for me, so I threw it all out the window and got loose. (At this stage I spent one whole day fantasizing about making really big abstract paintings of knitting, selling them in galleries for thousands of dollars.)
But I'm not really a "do big abstract paintings" kind of gal, not really. So after a little break (and some ice cream, and a decent night's sleep), the real, 'quieter' me came back, and I went back to my colored pencils and drawing table, and did some pieces the old fashioned way.
I like the look of the 'hand drawn' pieces so much better. That technique is not as versatile for what I want to do, and takes longer, but in the end, might be the way to go after all. I've done these with all colored pencils, but think I will have to do some with a combination of paint and pencil to get the 'look' I'm going for.
I do like this simple line drawing though. Wouldn't this be fun fabric? Hello Christmas!
OK, so you can see what I'm going through. My brain is fried. This is why artists go nuts.
OK, that's a little misleading. I'm talking about how my shops look, actually.
Zazzle has done a HUGE re-design of their whole site. Now, everyone looks kind of the same. I used to love how some people really got in there with the html and jazzed up their shops to make them look just like their websites, with graphics and bells and whistles. Learning how to add some pizzazz to mine has always been on my 'to-do' list (the one that never actually gets anything crossed off).
And now I am so glad I never got around to that, because all the custom stuff people did has been erased! Everyone's shop looks the same, except for the title graphic (no, excuse me, "mantle", to be technically correct - I'm learning all the techie web lingo for this stuff - "skin" is another one - evidently all the custom "skins" are gone - ew).
And of course, like with any re-design of something this big, there are bugs. The home page of all the shops doesn't display everything you want it to; the labels for sections don't all work; clicking on a page of some design, or doing a search, doesn't display all the products available; etc. etc. Hopefully all that will be fixed soon. At least there's some comfort in knowing everyone's shop is screwed up.
And then there's Cafe Press
. This 'oops' is all on me. I was fiddling around, and decided to click on a template design, just for fun, and neglected to read the bit that said "warning - if you change to a template design you cannot go back
". How did I miss that?
So of course I clicked, and now (say it with me) - "I cannot go back". And of course the "upload your own logo" thing doesn't work, so until I remember, or google, the html code for how to insert a graphic from somewhere else, it will look blah and generic.
We're having a little thing here called The Fourth of July. Its a day where we're supposed to be feeling thankful that a bunch of guys in breeches and buckled shoes and wigs all signed that big piece of parchment declaring our Independence, all those years ago.
What actually happens is that people eat a lot of bbq-ed meat and potato salad, drink beer, and then, depending on how high the 'yahoo factor' is, set off extra super loud (and may I add, illegal) fireworks for hours and hours and hours (the louder, the more "canon-like", the more obnoxious, the better), scaring animals and people alike, sparking fires, and blowing off the occasional finger.
But hey, at least we're FREE to do all of that, so I guess that's something, right?
Sorry to be cranky. Its hot. Very, very hot. I'll be better next time.
That's a loaded title. It applies to more things than just this little picture, for sure! Its what my life is all about right now - but I guess that's true for everyone, all the time, pretty much. Like spinning plates on Ed Sullivan
, am I right?
(In my mind I always have Sabre Dance
playing in my head to go along with this kind of routine, rather than what this guy is spinning to ...)
So here's my little piece. I set these up and took some reference to work from. It was fun to play with them, to see what they could do. They're just a little bit sticky, so I was able to get them to stay like this just long enough to snap a few pics.
This is a small piece - 5 x 7. All Pablo colored pencils, on Stonehenge paper.
I put the original and prints for sale in my etsy shop
. Because the prints are small, they're only $10. Such a deal!
Today I'm working on a 'drawings of knitting' project. I've been playing with this idea for a long time, and am determined to chain myself to my desk until I get it figured out. Luckily my desk is right next to an A/C blower, because we are having a heat wave from hell right now (108 on tap for today). I'm so thankful I get to sit inside and draw pictures, rather than have to be outside doing something icky for the next several days. The cats are all laying around like they're dead, and every time I walk around the house I have to step over some little furry body splayed out right in the middle of the hall, or a doorway.
Hope its cooler wherever you are!!
Just finished this piece. It was inspired very spur-of-the-moment the other day. I had the biscotti already, but had no idea how I was going to draw them. I'm bored with doing things just sitting alone with a shadow. So I found a cup. Then a doily, and 'wahlah' (voila). I only took two reference photos, which were essentially the same. In other words - I just 'did it'.
Its Pablo and Polychromo colored pencils on Stonehenge paper. Centered on an 8.25" square.
I found the biscotti at Costco the last time I was there. They were another spur-of-the-moment decision - they definitely weren't on my shopping list, but I always have an eye out for possible drawing subjects, and they looked nice. (It helps that I also like biscotti).
The cup is part of my very eclectic china collection. I have odd bits of all sorts of patterns, but mostly collect white or cream colored pieces. This is Wedgwood, the Patrician pattern.
And the doily is a little cheap paper one from the dollar store. I kid you not. All the holes aren't even punched out properly. But it was the perfect thing to complete the picture.
Here's a little 'step-by-step' so you can see how it progressed ~
And a little detail ~
I've put the original as well as prints in the shop
I'm also tinkering with my shop prices a bit. Its like splitting hairs, decided which prints should be $15, which ones $20. 8 x 10s are $20. But I figured out that if a piece is 8 x 8, or 7 x 7, it still takes a whole 8.5 x 11 piece of paper to do the print, and usually the same amount (or close) of ink as a whole 8 x 10, and I also have to trim it - just like an 8 x 10. So am 'upping' the price on a few things. If I can get two prints out of one sheet of paper, the price is less. There are times when this logic doesn't quite work, for odd sizes, and I'm sure some people may wonder how I arrive at a price. Prints that were $12.50 are now $15, and a few that were $15 are now $20. I think the cost is still low, and hopefully affordable to anyone who might want one, while still allowing me to actually make a bit of profit. This is the fiddly and not as much fun part of having a shop and trying to make it all work!
I'm also working behind the scenes on re-doing my website. I really need a "Commissions" page for people who want to order a custom piece of art, with sizes, prices, etc. There are a few other things I'd like to add. I do have some new software that I'm going to use, but any of you who've done this know about the learning curve, and how much work it can all be! But I'm determined. Meanwhile, if you'd like me to do a drawing for you, please just email me, or 'convo' me through etsy and we'll sort out all the details.
That doesn't sound like a very nice name for a candy. But that's what they are, right? At least here in the States. Maybe they're called something different in other lands. (I keep wanting to say "I'm gonna get you, sucka!" Isn't that a movie?)
8 x 8 inches, colored pencils on paper
The coffee shop I go to had a little bowl of these by the cash register, so I nabbed one. You know I can't resist a fun piece of candy. I haven't had one of these since I was a kid! They used to give them out at the doctor's office I think. Or somewhere like that.
I went back to Polychromos and Pablos (both oil pencils) on Stonehenge paper for this.
I put prints of this in the etsy shop
, and may list the original as well, later.
I have some other candy, and some biscotti to draw (if they don't get eaten first - especially the biscotti).
(I had to take a break from those sheep from the last post. Actually, I deleted a post where I did a good deal of whining about not being able to render them properly, using a new paper and all. Not sure what was going on there - its like someone waved a "bad ju-ju"wand over them or something. I absolutely love the drawing, but for some reason can't figure out how I want to render it. So I've put the little sheep family back in the barn for now, and they will come back out when I get my "sheep rendering mojo" back. Just in case you were wondering.)
My little blog here has been kind of lonely. I've been gearing up for some new projects, and am in the planning and sketching-out stages, so don't have much (OK, any) finished art to show.
I do have these little sheep though, who are now in the color rough stage. They are enjoying the nice Spring weather, and have moved out of the barn into the neighboring pasture for a little picnic.
Hopefully next time I post I will be able to show the finished art!
For a long time I've been saving fortunes I like from fortune cookies, and taping them to my parallel rule on my drawing table. They give me a little boost every day.
You can see that they've lived through many many illustrations and drawing and paintings. They're all pretty tattered and worn.
Sometimes you just need 'someone' to encourage you to keep going, or that everything will be OK.
The middle one below is actually a horoscope from the newspaper, but it was a perfect reminder to not obsess and worry, but instead, focus on the positive.
There are a few more which just didn't photograph well, and I was too lazy to redo them. But you get the idea. Some people tape affirmations to the bathroom mirror - I spend way more time at the drawing board than in front of a mirror, so this made more sense for me!
In other news, I'm cleaning flat files and putting some odds and ends up for sale in my etsy shop
. They're in the Spring Cleaning Sale section. I'm also listing some other original pieces that I would like to find homes for. And I'm adjusting some prices too. So over the next few days or week I should have more to choose from, and some things may be more affordable. I know "they" say you're not supposed to put your work on sale (if you're an artist) but they haven't seen my crowded flat files!
I'm doing little cards again. You may or may not remember me doing these before. They were fun, and people liked them, then for whatever reason I didn't keep them going.
Well, this time I'm using new paper (matte, rather than semi-gloss), new packaging (little take-out boxes rather than cube boxes) and also have some new images. So I'm happy about these!
I'm starting with 4 collections of my food art - Assorted Figs, Assorted Taffys, Plums and Pluots, and Assorted Jelly Beans.
Each card is 2 x 2 inches (5.08 x 5.08 cm) and comes with a little square white envelope, and a little round white sticker to seal the envelope.
These little envelopes come without any 'sticky' on them, so I experimented with home made envelope glue. Ew. No. I gave it a good try, and just couldn't. It was way too fussy and difficult to get just the right consistency for the glue, then brushing on a clean strip, or dots, also proved to be something I had no patience for. Plus, brushing glue onto umpteen envelopes and waiting for them to dry - again, no, thanks.
I settled on raffia for the bow rather than ribbon. I spent way too long in the ribbon aisle at the craft store trying to decide on something (
wired?, sheer?, what color(s)?, how wide?), then figured raffia would work well for all the different sets, and also wouldn't be too 'girly' for any men who might like these.
Right now I'm doing 24 in a box, but will probably offer them in sets of 12 as well at some point. It took a bit of figuring to make sure I ordered the right size carton. I checked, and measured, and double checked, and measured again before I placed the order. Then was very relieved when they arrived, and the cards fit as planned!
I think its a really cute package.
I've attached one card from each collection to the front, with a few words on the inside ~
Some of the images are 'wrap around', and some aren't. I liked playing with the compositions, figuring out how to make interesting bits go on the back as well as the front.
There's a lot of fussy cutting involved with these! I have a file for each card, then format them 10 to a page, then print and cut.
Finished cards go into little plastic bags until they're ready to be packaged up.
This is how they look when they're getting ready to go.
I've listed these first sets in the shop
, and hope to have more to offer in the near future. Chocolates? Assorted Candy? Crackers? We'll see.
Just finished this one - a very decadent caramel apple spice parfait. Tons of whipped cream and calories and fattening goodness. Done with all Pablo colored pencils on Stonehenge paper.
I put the original and prints in the shop
Now I have to go work it off (yes, of course I ate it!).
Happy Easter, to all who celebrate. Its morphed into such a weird "holiday", what with the mix of religion and chocolate and bunnies and hard boiled eggs and all. Not quite sure what I'm supposed to do with all of that. Take what works for you and have fun I guess.
So here's a piece a did a while back that I had titled "Easter Mango", because of the colors. And its kind of egg-like. I'm pretty sure I used Polychromos on illustration board for this.
Then I found a second version of it where I'd photoshopped the background - I can't even remember why now. There must have been a good reason!
I've also been doing some house portraits. This is one I can show. I love this house for its simple elegance. The landscaping kind of frames the simple design and color scheme of the building. I used all Pablo colored pencils for this one.
We've been having beautiful early Spring weather for weeks, with lilacs blooming and all the plants sprouting green stuff, then BAM!, last night we had the scariest thunder and lightning storm! I mean, window-rattling thunder. 'Cats under the bed' thunder. And crazy rain. Kind of a drag for the Easter bunny, but my lawn is loving it.
So until next time -
Hopping off to eat eggs and too much chocolate ...
** Horn tooting alert **
Look, there's my art on the cover. That's my "Answer Your Heart" piece. (They really bumped up the color - in reality, its pretty muted.)
You may click the cover to see a larger view, but the rest of the images here from the article I've made small on purpose. It wouldn't be kosher to "give them away" for free - this is just a taste. If you would like to purchase the magazine, they have both a digital and a paper version available through the website
Cool, huh? I love how they laid out the article and the art.
You can see a preview of the issue here
(although they leave out most of the 'meat', including my piece). Its a good magazine for anyone just learning about colored pencils, with lots of tips and info, as well as illustrated "step-by-steps", and features like mine. If you're thinking about 'getting into' doing colored pencil art, and aren't sure how to begin, this might be one low-cost way of getting started. People often ask me about which books to buy, what paper to use, which pencils, etc. etc. etc., and now I'm happy to be able to point them to this magazine (and no, they're not paying me to say this).
Going off to gloat a bit now.
Oh, forgot to say Happy Spring!
By: Paula Pertile
Blog: Drawing a Fine Line
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, red rose leaves
, Catholic Cardinals
, children's book art
, etsy shop thoughts
, botanical art
, colored pencils
, digital colored pencil
, cats in costumes
, Add a tag
I had this drawing on the board back when the conclave first started, but then the cats all got sick (they're fine now - BAD head cold, BAD BAD BAD) and that went on for an endless couple of weeks, and I got a little behind, playing nurse and all.
(please click on this to see it bigger)
These are some of the CATholic cardinals who didn't get elected Pope, out for a stroll through Rome, seeing the sites, and scouting for a place to have a nice plate of fishy pasta.
I had a lot of fun doing this one! Its a combination of colored pencil and Photoshop. A while back I figured out how to do a 'digital colored pencil' technique, but then got sidetracked with something else and never really developed that idea. I think now that I will go back to it, and see if I can put together a portfolio of children's book pieces that are all done that way. TALL ORDER. But hey, one piece at a time. I'll blog as I go, so you can stumble along with me.
I also finished this red rose leaves piece. This is ALL colored pencil, the old fashioned kind. I have some photos of other leaves and buds that I would like to do, and make this a series. This one was done with Polychromos and Pablos (both oil based), on Stonehenge paper, and is just under 8"x 8" (20.32 x 20.32 cm). I will do prints in the shop
as soon as I am able. Today maybe.
Speaking of the shop - I'm changing the paper I use for prints from the semi-gloss I've been using, to Epson Presentation Matte. I like it a lot better. Its a lighter weight, but I love the crisp images it produces. It also works really well for less "shiny" subject matter (like candy in foil wrappers). I still have some of the semi-gloss though, so if you would prefer that for something, please let me know.
I have to tweak my whole shop (today's chore) to include the new paper, as well as adjust some prices for shipping. I'll think I have it all sorted out, then I'll get a sale to a new (to me) country that has crazy expensive shipping, and I'll have to include that in all the listings. Like Australia, for example. What I could send here in the US for $3.50 will cost $9 to Australia sometimes. I hate having to charge so much to ship things, but I also hate to get a rude surprise at the post office, and find out I've just lost all my profit on the sale to under-charged shipping. Those of you with shops know what I'm talking about. Its the least fun part of having a shop. I just want to make the art!
I'm still here. Working on some things I either can't, or don't want to show - you know how that is sometimes. But I do have the start of this little drawing of some new rose leaves to share.
I really really really love when new buds and leaves appear on plants in the Spring - and especially these red rose leaves. I don't mean that the roses need to be red. Its just the leaves. I don't know why some of them come in this color, but I think its the coolest thing. The reds and purples are just so beautiful. They will all turn green eventually.
I was sitting on my back porch one day looking at my yard, daydreaming about what to draw, and it was just so obvious. So I got out the camera and took a few shots of these, and some other new growth. I hope to have a small series of these done to sell as prints in the future.
I don't usually draw plants, so this is a new thing for me. I also like this idea of 'new growth'. It's looking like a theme in my life right now on different levels. Some areas have been kind of stagnant for a while, and need some freshening up. Spring cleaning is about clearing out closets and drawers, sweeping out the corners and cobwebs, and doing a bit of deep cleaning. I'm kind of doing that literally, and also in my life. And trying to get some new little buds sprouting.
I've decided to call it a Recroissance (which I thought I just invented, but of course found out quickly is not new.) Its like a Renaissance, but a little different (Renaissance is 're-birth'). I also like that is sounds like 'croissant'. :~) So right now its a personal Recroissance, but feel free to start your own if you like. Maybe we can all together start a new Age.
By: Paula Pertile
Blog: Drawing a Fine Line
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Stonehenge paper. 8 x 10 colored pencil drawing
, food drawing
, red drawing
, Colored pencil drawing of Maraschino cherries
, Add a tag
8" x 10" (20.32 x 25.4 cm)
Every brand of pencils under the sun, on Stonehenge paper
I felt like making a new drawing, and looked in the cupboard for a subject. At first I thought I would do anchovies, but for some reason they grossed me out. Then I saw this little jar of maraschino cherries hiding in there which I'd forgotten about, and was so happy.
I always start with a line drawing, then start laying in some shadows or values just to get it going. I've darkened this up quite a bit so it would show up for you here. In real life it was a lot lighter.
This is a very RED drawing. Red is for me the hardest color to do with colored pencils. I really picked my way through this in the first several layers - kind of a 'Sunday painter approach', dawdling along, enjoying the subtle building up of color and value.
By the time I finish I will have used Coloursofts, Prismacolor, Luminance, Pablos and Polychromos.
At this point (above) I've used: Polychromo Burnt Carmine, Coloursoft Rose, Red, Deep Red, Scarlet, and Polychromo Green Gold. All really really light tentative layers.
I'm going back and forth between deepening the color, and re-establishing the forms in the jar.
At one point I got out my Prismacolors, against my better judgement. They've been breaking so much that I put them away and vowed to never use them again, no matter what. But they have the best reds. The best. So I pulled a Permanent Red, and started doing a layer. Then it came time to sharpen, and it broke, instantly. Grrrrrr. Try it again. Broke again. Pulled a whole NEW pencil out of a spare box, more breaking. Break, break, break, break break. I had to finish the one layer though, since I'd started, so I muddled through, but I was not a happy camper.
So now, by about this point, I've used all of the above, plus: Polychromo Purple, Fuschia, Middle Purple, Violet and Pablo Light Purple and Purplish Red. I know, hard to believe.
Then some Polychromo Geranium Lake and Pablo Reddish Orange. I think its here that I let it go for the night, and sat down to watch Downton Abbey.
The next day I was fully out of 'Sunday painter' mode, and very much in a "let's get this DONE" mode, so finally got serious about committing to putting down some real values. That required a bit of burnishing, which I always try to avoid until its the only thing left to get the piece where it needs to go. I skipped a few steps here in the scanning, because I just wanted to tuck in and get it done.
These couple of scans show the addition of: Luminance Permanent Red, Carmine Aubergine, Alizarin Crimson, Scarlet, Pablo Ruby Red, Luminance Green Ochre, Polychromo Olive Green and Green Oxide, Zinc Yellow, and maybe a couple more that I forgot to write down.
I just kept tweaking with a little of this and that until I was happy with it.
I thought you might like to see how un-glamorous my work set up is. I know there are people who have pristine, organized, "let's take a photo for the magazine" kinds of work spaces. How nice for them. Not me.
I stack all my tins of pencils that I'm using up on top of each other, like this, on my slanted drawing table. In the above pic you can see two tins of Polychromos, on top of Luminance, on top of Pablos.
I've separated them out a bit here below so you can see them better. I just pull up a tray when I need to search for a color in a tin below. The Polychromos are all organized neatly by color. The others are not.
And here's a shot of how the 'used' pencils look off to the right side of the board. Not neat. Not organized. They often fall off onto the floor (but I have carpet, so they don't get broken). I honestly don't know how you neat people keep everything all perfect. I admire it, but it doesn't work for me. Of course I'll clean them all up and put them back in their tins now, and the board will get cleared off for the next piece. And it will start all over again.
I'll put prints in the shop at some point. I'm searching for a new paper to do prints on in addition to the semi-gloss I've been using. I would like to offer an option for a more matte paper for some of my pieces. There are just way too many papers to choose from! I want to keep the cost down, so my prints will not be expensive. I do have some fancy paper that turned out to be too thick to feed through my Epson - boo. So I'll keep looking.
The sun is out here, its like Spring. Crazy. Nice, but crazy. People are mowing lawns and watering, washing their cars, wearing t-shirts. Gotta love California.
I've been drawing candy again. I found this assortment of chocolates from around the world at Costco, and you know I did a little silent squeeing as I popped them into my cart. All those shiny wrappers! And ones I'd never seen before!
This first one is a Witor's NOIR, dark chocolate. omg. Its really really good. It has some chopped hazelnuts (I think) on the top, just a few. Just enough. And that wrapper. It is just too beautiful, with that gold and brown. Yummy all the way around.
I used all Polychromos on this.
Then this one. Its a Dilettante Raspberry No. 30 chocolate. No. 30? What's that all about? I looked it up on their website but it offers no clue. In fact, it doesn't even have this one listed. So I don't know. But I loved this one too (both the wrapper and the candy).
I used Polychromos and Pablos on this one. They're both on 6" x 8" paper, and larger than life.
They're both in the shop
There are a few more to do, so in between other projects and assignments I will get to them as soon as I am able. I think I'd better make a trip to Cost Plus too, because they always have good holiday treats to draw. Then there's Whole Foods ... actually I want to go there for my annual mincemeat pie. So many treats, so little time!
This is a card I did for Paper Moon a while back. Some things never change.
I'm going to burrow in and cook, clean, wrap, knit and draw stuff for the next couple of weeks.
Hope you all have a wonderful holiday, whatever you're celebrating!
By: Paula Pertile
Blog: Drawing a Fine Line
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, house portrait
, teapot illustration
, Just Draw It online drawing course
, architectural rendering
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The end of another year. Where did it go? This one really seemed to whoosh by.
I finished a nice house rendering commission just before Christmas. Isn't this a charming home? Its so nice to work on a piece that's something you like drawing. This was a special portrait of a family home for the owners, who will (sadly) be moving. So it was kind of bittersweet.
This was done with Polychromo and Pablo pencils on Stonehenge paper.
One big goal for 2013 is to expand my architectural rendering / house portrait business. I have samples done in different styles, and want to put together a commission page on my website, or maybe even a whole separate site, just for this. I work in color as well as black and white, and do colored pencil, ink, and watercolor. I also have some new exciting ideas for "alternative", more decorative styles that are not so photo realistic. So that's a BIG "to-do" thing on my list!
* * * * *
I posted this Teapot illustration a while back, and have now listed it as a print in the shop
Another goal for this next year is to keep working on all my shops. I have ideas for oodles of art and designs, but only two hands and 24 hours in a day. You know how it is! Guess we all have that. So I'm trying to balance out what I want to make (just because I want to make it), with what people will actually want to buy. (Sometimes they're not the same thing.)
I've also raised my print prices just a hair, especially on the really "ink heavy" pieces. I've learned the hard way that printers really love to drink ink! Especially magenta. I am very thankful for Office Depot's free home delivery service, which I have taken advantage of many times over the past couple of months!
Its a constant learning curve, crunching the numbers on selling things you make yourself, making sure you stay in the black. But that could be another whole post in itself. Prices for similar things on etsy can vary wildly, and I'm always amazed that some people charge what they do and seem to sell a lot, while others practically give it away and set the bar way too low. Don't even get me started on what people charge for knitting!
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One of my artist followers, Koosje Koene in the Netherlands, has let me know about a new online drawing course she's offering.
"It's a six week course in which the participants will get weekly updates with tutorials, step-by-step instructions, video's, photos, and lots of practical tips on drawing techniques and illustrating. Unlike many other online courses, each participant will be provided with my feedback on exercises and assignments they do. Apart from that, the course is full of unique content, practical tips, tricks and fun."
Looks like fun. I hope lots of people sign up Koosje!
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So guess that's about it for me, for now. Like you probably are, I'm half relaxing, and half making big plans for next year. We're having some nice California sun here, which is lovely. The cats are out sunning themselves on the back porch or in windows, while I make yet another cup of Peet's coffee and either draw or knit or do this or make lists.
I sincerely hope this next year is full of good health and prosperity and joy for everyone. Things have been rough for too long. There will always be challenges, but hopefully they will just be little bumps, not mountains.
Happy New Year everyone!
I was surprised and delighted to be informed that my kitties (or drawings of them) had won me the illustrious "Moose" award! What an honor. I've admired Katherine Tyrrell's Making a Mark
blog for a long time, and to be singled out for an award by her is high praise indeed!
(please click on these to see them bigger, or better yet, click the link
to go to the blog itself)
She suggests I do more, art-wise, with my cats. Well, you know what? I am. I actually do have a genius idea in the works, but you know how these things go - they can take time. I already have a domain and blog, and have even considered trademarking it all. But I've been keeping it under wraps until its 'ready'. Guess this might be a sign from the Artiverse (I just made that up - its like Universe, only with Art - OK, you got that) to get going on it.
So it looks like to going to be very busy year for me, if I put my money where my mouth is and do everything on my work 'to-do' list!
And so what have I been doing the past couple of days? Knitting. I've been feeling just a skoshe under the weather, just slightly off and tired and chilly and tired and slow - and tired. Knitting is a good prescription for that I've found. I made some new cowls and a scarf, and am doing up some fingerless gloves, which is a new thing for me. I also found some perfect clear bins to store yarn in, so did a bit of organizing, which feels really good.
Its very cold and frosty here, but clear. I've been covering plants at night, and wearing my shawl a lot. The kitties have been extra snuggly, and every afternoon they squabble over who gets the 'good sun window'.
I hope all of you are having a nice start to 2013, and that the year unfolds well for everyone!
In the last two posts I was talking about all the work I have / want to do with cat art and architectural renderings. And then what do I do? Draw cheese.
(please click this to see it full size)
These are Parmigiano Reggiano rinds. Aren't they lovely? The cheese itself is probably my favorite. I grew up on that powdery stuff in the green can that most Americans eat because they don't know any better. It wasn't until I moved to San Francisco and was exposed to all good things that I discovered this food of the gods.
You should have seen me at Whole Foods when I found these in a little tub. You can buy the cheese shaved, or grated, or in whole chunks of various weights and sizes. But this was the first time I'd ever seen rinds for sale. Most (normal) people use these to flavor stews or soups or sauces, but of course I immediately thought of a drawing! (And then I stood there and looked at all the little tubs, picking each one up and turning it around, trying to get a good look at exactly what was inside, to see which one had the best pieces. I do this with the produce too, and always wonder what the people on the security cameras are thinking as they watch me.)
This drawing is 8 x 10 inches (20.32 x 25.4 cm) on Stonehenge paper. I used Polychromo and Coloursoft colored pencils. Mostly Coloursofts, because the soft leads helped me build up the slightly grainy texture I was going for. A nice Caput Mortuum Polychromo did most of the work for the lettering. All in all I used a dozen different colored pencils to render this.
I'll have the original and prints available in my etsy shop soon.
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Downton Abbey is back!! (here in the US, anyway) I'm reading The Real Life Downton Abbey
right now, which is all about how people really
lived back in Downton times, both above and below stairs. It goes into detail about rules, duties, salaries and lots of other nitty gritty details. I'm loving it.
I'm really in a cheese mood lately. Not sure why, but its been fun.
This is a Hennings Cranberry Chipolte Cheddar. Wow! Imagine biting into a piece of cheese, and having it be a little sweet, then *kapow!* hot right after that. Did you ever have that Halapeno Jelly over Cream Cheese dip/spread that used to be really popular (maybe it still is, I don't know). Its kind of like that. Except different.
What really attracted me to this (before I'd tasted it) was the beautiful rind. I have my suspicions about this though - although the cheese was labeled as being Hennings, the rind in no way looks to be anything about Hennings. Right? You can't get "Hennings" out of what cryptic bits are stenciled there.
There's no doubt its cranberry chipolte cheddar. None. And Hennings does make a cranberry chipotle cheddar. But as for the actual maker of this piece? Not too sure. The person who labeled this may have goofed. I guess it doesn't really matter, and may just have to remain a mystery.
I had fun building up the marble-y bits of stuff with colored pencils. This was done with Coloursofts on Stonehenge paper. Its 8 x 10 inches.
And now its onto something else ...
By: Paula Pertile
Blog: Drawing a Fine Line
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, colored pencil drawing
, chocolate cupcake
, Hostess cupcake
, childhood memories of the Wonder Hostess plant.
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How could I not draw one of these?
5.5" x 4.5"-ish on 8"x 8" Stonehenge paper
If you don't know, its a Hostess Cupcake. Its an iconic American snack food. We all remember eating these as kids. And recently, Hostess announced they were going out of business. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So there was a run on these at the stores, and I managed to get the last package at my local grocer's.
I have a fond memory of touring the Wonder / Hostess plant here on a school field trip in about the second grade. The place smelled so wonderful! And we were all given a wee tiny little loaf of freshly baked Wonder Bread to take with us. I always loved driving by the place, rolling down the windows to catch that heavenly freshly-baked scent. But now, alas, its quiet and empty and there are no more fresh bread smells. Very sad. Very sad indeed.
So I drew a cupcake for posterity. (I also have a loaf of Wonder Bread and some other goodies in the freezer that may become drawings as well, we'll see.)
I scanned this a few times along the way as I was drawing it, so you can see how it developed.
I started with Coloursofts - this was a layer of Brown Earth.
Then I added more browns, and a layer of Loganberry.
The icing is Polychromo Bistre, Cream, and Ivory.
Then a layer of my beloved Polychromo Caput Mortuum. I love love love that color!
And more of the same on the icing.
To finish off the top I added some PC Sepia and Burnt Sienna.
The icing just got "more".
The cupcake itself was a combination of all the already mentioned colors, just done to look like cake instead of frosting.
I'm not really a fan of burnishing, just because once you 'go there' there is no turning back. And doing a lot of it can hurt your hand (well, mine, anyway). But to get the frosting to look really smooth, I had to burnish a bit. Then the rest of it had to get burnished as well, just so it all looked the same. So this piece was pretty fussy, but it was still a lot of fun to do.
I've put it up for auction on ebay, here
. I started the bidding high, because I'm rusty on 'ebay-ing' and couldn't find the reserve listing thing they used to have (with that, you can start bidding low, but set a reserve price so that if the bidding doesn't go high enough, no one will get it). I don't want it to sell too
cheap. It may not sell at all! And if not, I'll put it in my etsy shop.
I did do prints in the etsy shop
Not sure what's next - maybe a Twinkie? All I could get on that last day were chocolate cream ones, not the white gooey ones, so I'm dithering about whether to do them or not. Wait, I think I have some Ho-Hos ...