Pencil drawings and a few thoughts

I’ve been feeling a little burnt out with the art lately, I’m actually a bit bored with it.  But after several long conversations with my wife I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve fallen into the Instagram trap.  I’ve been making art based on what gets the most “likes” on Instagram, and Facebook too.  And because of that, my art has started looking like a lot of art that’s out there, not that the art that is out there is bad, but there are a lot of people doing a lot of the same thing.  Not that that’s a bad … Continue reading Pencil drawings and a few thoughts

Mugs and old places

The pencil sketches/value studies continue. The last two days I have been focusing on tea mugs and old buildings. I don’t like to use the word teacup, I always picture a very dainty and small decorative cup detailed in flowers and sitting on an equally small and detailed saucer. I could just say coffee mug, but I am not a coffee drinker. I am a dedicated tea drinker who loves hot tea from a large mug. I never really appreciated the complexity of drawing a mug until these last few days. A cylinder and some lines and a bit of … Continue reading Mugs and old places

Value studies and loose watercolors

I’ve committed myself to really focus on the watercolors. I’ve always enjoyed watercolors, both painting them and looking at them. For years I have worked with watercolors, not really giving them a whole lot of thought, I’ve always just used them as an accent to the pen drawings. I think I just became comfortable, and maybe lazy, with that combination. But going forward the pens will be used for quick sketches and writing. To gain better control of the watercolors I am going back to basics. Lots of value studies and quick sketches. The value studies may never develop into … Continue reading Value studies and loose watercolors

Could this be the Holy Grail of sketchbooks?

I have spent the last several years looking for the perfect sketchbook. I think I can honestly say I have purchased and tried everything out there. I have two cabinets loaded with partially used sketchbooks. I have also passed along several of my trial and error sketchbooks to a budding young artist. What makes a perfect sketchbook for me? It really comes down to just a few key things. My preferred tools for sketching are pencil and pen sometimes together. I also use both fiber tipped pens and fountain pens, and I will occasionally use bottled ink and or art … Continue reading Could this be the Holy Grail of sketchbooks?

Spring is slowly coming to the garden

This has been a wild week for weather in our garden. Tuesday morning the temperature was 16°F, by Thursday morning it was 49°F. This morning it’s a more seasonal 37°F. I’ve started using AD Markers again with my sketching. I love these markers, best out there in my opinion. They do bleed through the Landland paper, but markers bleed through everything. It just means I’ll be buying more of these little sketchbooks. Everyday that I get to go outside I feel better. Just smelling the dirt and hearing the sounds is so nice. This morning I could hear several song … Continue reading Spring is slowly coming to the garden

The daily garden journal and a bonus chickadee

It feels like winter is really holding on tight. I realize we aren’t officially in spring, but once January hits I’m pretty much ready for the snow to be gone and spring to arrive. Wishful thinking, I know. I was looking out the back door on Sunday hoping to see something that would inspire me to draw. But there is only so much you can do with snow-covered grass and bare branches poking up around the garden. As I was standing there holding my pencil and Landland sketchbook, I could hear the tea kettle rumbling away on the counter top. … Continue reading The daily garden journal and a bonus chickadee

The garden journal and a new project

The daily garden journal continues. To be honest I really picked a challenging time of year to start a garden journal. It’s cold, snowy, and not a lot is happening in the garden. But I also enjoy the challenge that adds. I’ve been using a variety of fiber tip pens and fountain pens for my drawings. The fountain pens are great when I’m using colored ink, but the fiber tip pens are my first choice for black lines. The Faber-Castell PITT pens have always been my favorite. Over the years I have tried several different brands and styles of fountain … Continue reading The garden journal and a new project

A new garden journal

I’ve decided to start a sketchbook/garden journal this year. Starting this during the winter is proving to be a challenge, but I if I can keep this up until spring kicks in I will be golden! I am currently using a Story Supply Co. pocket notebook for this. I love the compact size of these notebooks and the faint grid. The paper is also very friendly to fountain pens, art pens, and pencils. This allows me to use both sides of the paper without fear of anything bleeding through. For those who want to try Story Supply Co. notebooks, or … Continue reading A new garden journal

Zinnias and an old farm house…

I’ve put away the pens and I am now embracing loose watercolors and pencil. I used a lot of pencils in college, and I always enjoyed them. I’m not sure why I stopped using them. After trying several different brands I have settled on Blackwing pencils and the original Palomino pencils. Beautiful pencils and the best graphite I have ever used! I am also skipping the pens with my watercolors, for now. That may change. But, I really love the challenge of painting loose. In theory it seems easy enough, bold brush strokes and minimal detail. But the challenge of … Continue reading Zinnias and an old farm house…

A busy week for art

Last week was a very busy week for art. I had several request for custom Field Notes covers, something I really enjoy! I also squeezed in some time for sketching for myself. I’ve been using both the Field Notes and the Leuchtturm1917 journals. They both have their strengths and weaknesses. I find myself favoring the Field Notes because of their size, and I am a sucker for the  multiple cover options. The Leuchtturm1917 journals are very nice, the paper is great with pens and pencil, but I still find the size and thickness a downfall. I really doubt I’ll stick … Continue reading A busy week for art