Pale Girl

This blog has gone a little dormant generally. What with the pandemic and all, I just have not been up to enough in my life that generates blog fodder. This blog has, however, gone especially quiet when it comes to my art dabbling. That is not for the lack of art in my life, however. On the contrary, I have been drawing near daily since June. I have been sharing the results of a personal challenge (illustrations of vintage photos) and now Drawlloween drawings over on my blog that is dedicated to only art. Since all of my art time has been invested in those projects, art journaling has been placed so much on the back burner that it is stone cold. While I intend to take a break from daily drawing, I am going to return to art journaling in order to keep up with regular practice and stop those creative gears seizing up from rust.

Draw This in Your Style (DTIYS) challenges on Instagram seemed like a good way to get back into playing around and experimenting in my art journal. The subject matter and composition is all set for me so I just need to – like it says on the tin – draw it in my style. I thought I would have a crack at a recent art work by Behemot titled “Pale Girl and Very Suspicious Cat”, not least because the monochromatic palette appealed to me aesthetically and in terms of time management. I am pleased with my version of the Pale Girl. I think my illustration shares DNA with the original but is very clearly my style. It is a fun challenge to translate digital art into analogue so I am going to seek out a few more of those I think.

Pale Girl

Rainbow Art Journal – Head in the Clouds

The next page in the blue section of my Rainbow Art Journal was an almost blank slate. Apart from some small scrapings of leftover blue paint, all it contained was a wine label containing the word “Wonderful”. That label became my starting point for constructing a column comprising odds and ends of washi tape. The column then became the herma-esque body form for a female figure. Having painted the background a solid blue, I decided her hairstyle should take the shape of a simplified cloud. I think she has emerged with a bit of a silent screen actress look.

63 - Head in the Clouds

Rainbow Art Journal – Air Sprite

This next page in the blue section of my Rainbow Art Journal was actually created back in February. It was made with the contents of that month’s Art Snacks box. I received blue and green products so I decided to produce an illustration of an Air Sprite. The blue of her clothing is an acrylic ink and the colour of her hair was actually produced by diluting the pigment from a metallic green marker. That same marker has a nib that produces dots of varying sizes depending on the pressure placed on it. As you can see, I had a lot of fun creating those dots.

62 - Air Sprite

Squiggles and Blobs

This was what I created with the contents of my March Art Snacks box. I am not a fan of coloured pencils. It’s a bit of a chicken and egg situation as I don’t know whether I am bad at using them because I don’t like them or whether my ineptitude with them has led me to dislike them. Despite the fact the pencil leads were buttery smooth, I still could not achieve a neat finish. I am as scribbly with the pencils now as I was when I was a wee girl. Still, sometimes it is as useful to be reminded of what media you don’t enjoy as which you do like to use. The squiggles in the background did not start out as purposeful mark making. The nib of the black marker was very flexible – the type that would lend itself to calligraphy – and I let it slip when I was attempting a straight line. I just had to lean into it and channel my inner Bob Ross and allow squiggles to be a feature in the background. Once I had added background squiggles, it seemed necessary to balance those out with blobs made with the paint pen.

Art Snacks - March 2021 -2

Green and Ochre

In addition to my Post-It note drawings, the other art I have been trying to keep up with is the monthly challenge of creating an illustration using only the contents of that month’s Art Snacks box. Each box arriving in my mailbox was a useful prod to get me to set aside some time for art. It helped that most of the products in recent boxes have been portable so I have been able to create art on the go.

This was what I created with the contents of my January box. I really liked the grey fine liners. As you know, I use black ink pens a lot but I was glad to have grey pens to add to my case of drawing pens. The green has not photographed well but it is actually metallic with a pleasing shimmer. I didn’t find that ochre colour appealing at first glance and never would have chosen that colour in a store but, once I used it, I actually found I really quite liked it. Green and orange are both colours I overlook when I am drawing so it is sometimes useful to have a nudge to create with those neglected colours.

Art Snacks - January 2021 - 2

Rainbow Art Journal – Waterlogged

I have accidentally established a tradition in my Rainbow Art Journal whereby each colour section contains an illustration of some kind of sprite-like creature.  For the blue section, I was thinking of water.  I drew a figure who is drenched in water (or, as I would say in Scots, “drookit”), her body morphing into a puddle on the floor, her hair dripping across her face.

59 - Waterlogged

Rainbow Art Journal – Graphite Girls

Another completed page in the blue section of my Rainbow Art Journal.  This one was easy to finish up because I actually drew the original in March of 2020 – which feels like years ago now – in response to an Art Snacks challenge.  I had drawn it in the blue section of the art journal thinking the media I had received were, well, much more blue than they turned out to be.  They were far too green and it was annoying me that I had misjudged the colours and stuffed up the colour theme in the sketchbook.  I had, therefore, walked away from it for a while – which turned out to be a long while – to come up with a solution.  I was so annoyed with myself initially that I considered covering up the whole thing and starting over with essentially a new substrate but I loved that graphite watercolour and the way it had dried in puddles far too much to cover that up.  My solution in the end was a quick and easy one so I could call this page “done” and move on: I simply layered some blue ink washes over some of the most green areas of the illustration to knock them back.  It is definitely a blue-green piece but that’s acceptable to me.

58 - Graphite Girls - Final

Midsommar

I have not been creating any art for a month now which, for me, is quite a long time.  Partly this was a consequence of needing a break after several months of near daily drawing and partly it was a symptom of just being burned out from everyday life in 2020.  My creative mojo had temporarily departed.  Not wanting rust to settle into my artistic joints, I decided to try the December Art Snacks challenge as a way to grease the machine.

In order to avoid overwhelm, I opted to work on one of those small, narrow samples of paper I have that I have been turning into bookmarks.  When I looked through the media contained in my Art Snacks box and thought about the colours, I immediately thought of summer flowers.  Summer flowers made me think of the May Queen from the horror movie ‘Midsommar’ and so that became the basis for my illustration.  I did cheat a wee bit in that I used a micron pen for the outlines of the face and the very loose flower shapes.

Art Snacks - Dec 2020 - Midsomar

Art Snacks - Dec 2020 - Midsomar May Queen

Now that I have broken my creative drought with this small illustration, I hope to get back to at least pootling around in my art journals over winter break.

1980s Girl

I desperately needed some art time but I was completely lacking in motivation and inspiration.  I did, however, have my November Art Snacks box sitting untouched on my art table so I decided to tackle this month’s challenge as a way to jump start some creative time.

I did cheat a bit on the challenge because I used a black ink pen that did not come with the box.  The bright pink of the marker, the citrus green of one of the pencils, and the neon yellow of the brush pen suggested a 1980s pop vibe so I sketched out a girl wearing 1980s fashions – based simply on my recollection rather than any references so probably not super accurate.

It’s certainly far from my best work but it felt therapeutic to create something in my art journal and, as I have written many times before, often the journey is more important than the destination.

Art Snacks - November 2020

Sunshine and Lavender

Between completing my Star Wars illustration challenge and participating in Drawlloween, it took until mid-November for me to find the time and motivation to experiment with the supplies in my October Art Snacks box.  Even when I did break them out, I kept things very small and manageable.  This illustration is the scale of a bookmark.  Indeed, I have a number of these skinny drawings now and I think I am going to laminate them so they can all become bookmarks.

I think this drawing ended up with a bit of a 1910s vibe to it.  The combination of the lavender paint pen, which I watered down as well as using straight out of the barrel, and the bright sunshine yellow of the ink brush is quite a pleasing colour combination I think.

Art Snacks - October 2020 - 2