Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Lady and The Prince - and a Happy New Year

The lady and The Prince

8x10 inches

Inktense Pencils and Faber Castell Pitt Pens on Acrylic Paper

Firstly, a very Happy New Year to everyone and I wish you all a year filled with good health, peace and happiness!!!

A very big thank you to Juno Kughler, an amazing coloured pencil artist, who kindly shared some of her reference photos for other artists to use, including the one of this gorgeous frog.

Those of you who have followed my blog for a while, would know how much I love to experiment with different mediums. I have had my Faber Castell Pitt Pens for a while now and always suspected that they could be a joy to use, if used on the right surface, but hadn't really spent a lot of time exploring which ones would bring out their best qualities. Unfortunately, they really aren't suitable on drafting film at all, because even once the ink has been left to dry, it still wipes straight off the film. I would like to try the pens on the Dura-lar wet media drafting film to see if this gives the ink more staying power. I also found that regular paper seems to negate the wonderful blending qualities of the pitt pens as the ink dries a little too quickly for my liking.

I spent a lazy day last week pulling out all sorts of different surfaces to see how the pens responded and found that the acrylic paper was an absolute joy to work with. I would like to find a brand of acrylic paper that has slightly less texture (I'd be keen to hear if anyone could reccommend one). The one I'm using is the Canson, which has a texture similar to linen canvas.

I actually started this drawing using the inktense pencils and was only using the Pitt pens for the darker areas, but then found that I could achieve a combination of textures and shades, by either layering the pitt pens over the top of each other, using a wet brush to blend the ink before it dried, or softening edges and blending colours using the Tria blending marker.

I must admit I feel really excited about exploring this combination of mediums further. The colours are vivid and bright, but it is also possible to achieve soft, muted colours. I would love to hear of anyone else's experiences with these pens, and in particular different surfaces that you might have tried :)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Ponderings of Christmas

Indra and Guy

9x12 inches

Pastel on Pastelmat


8x10 inches

Coloured pencil on drafting film

The house that Sam and Karen built

Christmas is such a strange time really. The last week has been a haze of last minute shopping, cleaning, cooking and young people coming and going in a blur of social engagements and long working hours (our three older boys work part time at Toys R Us - and have had several 2:30am finishes in the last few weeks). There were high expectations amongst them all and some of those expectations were met and some were not. As we get older, the excitement for the materialism of Christmas is replaced with a yearning for everyone to be happy, and sadly enough this doesn't always coincide with Christmas Day. Now, it is Boxing Day, and in typical Australian fashion, all the men in our house set their alarms for 10 to 10 so that they could rise just in time to watch the start of the cricket. The frantic pace has been replaced with a gentle laziness and everyone seems happy and content and expectations have disappeared. For me the day after Christmas sometimes holds more of the peace and joy that we long for on Christmas Day.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

My Gift to You

Opposites - High and Low - My Gift to You

26cm x 51cm

Coloured pencil on drafting film

This is a sample illustration for another book for Hachette publications, and seemed appropriate to post at this time, as we are in the midst of a season of giving and sharing. Hope this puts a smile on your face and that all my blogger and internet friends have the most wonderful Christmas, full of peace, love and joy, and a truly fabulous year in 2012!!!! xxx

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Introducing Sophie

No artwork today, as all the pieces I've been working on lately are commissions for Christmas and I can't spoil the surprise. This is our newest addition - Sophie (a Chinese Crested Powder Puff), although this photo was taken a few weeks ago, so she has already grown. It is just as well puppies are so endearing and bring out that strong maternal instinct or else no dogs would make it to adulthood - my cupboard has never contained so many carpet cleaning products, we've had to throw out several pairs of shoes, some of my low lying books now have chewed or non existent spines and the list goes on - but who could resist that face!!! Hope everyone is having fun with their Christmas preparations - I wrapped my final present today and sent off 12 parcels interstate, which is always a lovely feeling - just the cooking and cleaning to go!!!