Monday, July 28, 2014

Watercolor Pencil "Fuchsia" - Step by Step


I've been in full swing filming projects for my upcoming "Watercolor Pencil" online class.  This class is the first part of the new "Water Soluble Series" that I will be offering over the coming year.  I'm extremely excited about how this is shaping up.  It is a six-lesson class that is jam packed with technique, exercises, drawing lessons, projects, and inspiration. 


In this class, I take participants through a journey into watercolor pencils, teaching a range of techniques that will give their artwork a magical depth and vibrancy.  Watercolor pencils are fantastically versatile.  Almost everyone has them in their art box, but not many people know how to truly use them. 


This painting of a "Fuchsia" is one of the projects for this class.  It is done entirely in watercolor pencil using a number of different techniques to achieve the color glow and detail.  Building up layers is an important way to achieve dimension, and knowing how to build a wet layer over a dry is extremely helpful.


Another important element of watercolor pencil technique is knowing how to effectively mix colors from a limited palette to achieve a host of color effects and tones.  Before I start a painting like this I create a "Color Test" page in my sketchbook where I will experiement with a number of different colors and several different mixing techniques to try to get a color match that is as close as possible to my subject.


This color test page is vital to the process of understanding how the pencils interact with each other, and how the different application techniques can affect the outcome of texture and dimension. In this class I take you step by step through creating a color test page and different mixing techniques.


"Watercolor Pencils" goes live on September 18th. It is a jam-packed 6-lesson class that will help bring your art to a new dimension.  Access is ongoing and indefinite.  

If you would like more information, including a suggested supplies list, please click here.

Enjoy your week and thanks for checking in. xx

Friday, July 25, 2014

Friday Sketches - Week 21

Welcome to Friday Sketches.  This week it's all about 'Sketching Foliage' and I'm sharing some foliage sketches from some of my sketchbooks.

It's been a glorious summer in the mid-west, very tropical-esque, and that means that the foliage around our area is abundant.  My usual flower subjects are still my favorite, but I can't pass up some of the beautiful leaves that I've seen.

Sketching leaves is vastly underestimated.  They can make beautiful subjects for your sketchbook. 

Here are some of the stunning entries from last weeks "Friday Sketches".  Be sure to stop by their blogs and let them know you appreciate their work.

Michelle S. Mathey

Prachee :)

Through My Window

A.L.Romero Art & Design

Passion For Paper

Hawkeseye's heART

If you'd like to share your sketchbook or art journals on "Friday Sketches", please click the link below, and be sure to put a link back here in your blog post.

Enjoy your weekend and thanks for checking in. xx

(Linking to PPF & AJED)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Words To Live By


"Our way is not soft grass, it's a mountain path with lots of rocks. But it goes upwards, forward, toward the sun."

~Ruth Westheimer


I'm sharing a little sunny wisdom circle today to go along with the beautiful season in my part of the world.  Sunshine is abundant and the world around me is alive with color and sparkle.


Doodling a Mandala, or Wisdom Circle, as I like to call them, is a very important part of my creativity.  Especially at times when I am crazy busy and locked into deadlines and commissions. Sometimes I find it necessary to work in the abstract and represent the essence of my moments, rather than the images.


The simplicity of repeating patterns and the joy of color flow is soothing, energizing, and meditative.  It helps center me, relax me, and bring me back to my core.


My online mini-class, "Wisdom Circles" is a beautiful, gentle little class that guides you through this simple process.  Using Arthurian legend as an anchor it takes you on lovely journey through creating mandalas of dreams and desire.


"Wisdom Circles" is self-guided, open access, and on sale now.  

You get access to all the materials from Day 1, and access is indefinite.  So you can come and go from the class as often as you like, for as long as you like.

If you would like more information, or would like to register, please click here.

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you have a beautiful week. xx

Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Sketches - Week 20

Tea Is Served

Welcome to Friday Sketches.

This week I'm sketching Tea Time.  I've been doing lots of stuff with the kids and missing many of my usual quiet moments with a hot cup of tea.  A very important element to my day and to my sanity.

Tea Is Served

My "Intro To Watercolor" class that at I've been teaching all summer has ended and it was absolutely joyful.  A beautiful group of students with loads of energy and talent.  I'm now preparing for two more classes that start next week at the Waterloo Center for the Arts.

The kids have another month before they go back to school, so I'll be running around wishing I had eight arms for a little longer yet.

Tea Is Served

This sketch I did some time ago.  It is watercolor and ink in a Stillman & Birn Zeta Series Sketchbook.

Friday Sketches Banner

Here are some of the wonderful art that participants of last week's Friday Sketches have shared.  Be sure to check out their blogs.

W14 7 8 hummus raspberry pepper 300dpi 1
D. Katie Powell
Lunar Moondae
Through My Window

A quick visit to a peaceful outdoor museum and checked out Turku port area
Sue Shorman Art & Design

Journal52 Week 25 Nature Inspired
Sentiments & Scrapbooks

Hawkeseye's Nest

Pigment Of My Imagination
Passion For Paper
If you'd like to share your Friday Sketches, please click the link below.  And remember to put a link back here in your post.

Happy Friday and thanks for checking in. xx

Monday, July 14, 2014

Splash & Scribble

Scribbling ideas for my upcoming workshop for 21 Secrets FALL.  My workshop is called "Splash & Scribble".  
The blackberries watercolor sketch in this photo was inspired by the beautiful sketches of Richard Sheppard, The Artist on the Road.
21 Secrets begins on October 1st and is on sale now.  Click here for more information.

It's been a huge summer so far. I've been crazy busy with young kids and all the stuff that goes along with them.  In between family (which always takes priority), I've been teaching live classes at the Waterloo Center for the Arts and prepping and filming for my upcoming Fall schedule of online classes.  This means that blogging has taken a slight back seat for now.  Apologies to those of you who check in regularly but when the kids go back to school I'll have more time blog.

So this week I'm thinking about my offering for 21 Secrets FALL and scribbling lots of ideas.  My workshop for this program is called "Splash & Scribble" and it's all about quick and colorful art journal illustration. I've been playing around with ideas, techniques, and subject matter. 

I love the simple, whimsical, quick way of illustrating icons of everyday life, especially the garden.  It's a great way to improve your artistic technique as well as make your art journal pages more recognizable and meaningful.

21 Secrets FALL is an art-journal program that offers 21 online workshops with 21 fabulous teachers. It's on sale now, so if you'd like more info on this amazing program, please click here.

Have a great week and thanks for checking in. xx

Friday, July 11, 2014

Friday Sketches - Week 19


Welcome to Friday Sketches.  This week I'm still sketching my "Icons of Summer".

It's been a beautiful week for me, completely consumed with summer activities with my children and enjoy a little sketching time in between filming for my upcoming Watercolor Pencils class.


The gardens around me are in their total summer glory and deciding which of the exquisite scenes I look out on to sketch is the biggest challenge for me right now.


With children around, simple fast gesture sketches in ink or pencil, with light washes of watercolor are the best. 


This page of sunflowers was done in a Stillman & Birn "Epsilon" Series Sketchbook in ink and watercolor. 


What have you been creating this week??

Friday Sketches Banner

Here is just a little inspiration from some of the participants of last weeks Friday Sketches. 

Hawkesey'e heART
Learning To Just Breathe

The Art Of Stamping
W14 7 3 ONE BOOK
Lunar Moondae
Guess who got a set of Neocolor crayons for her birthday???
That’s right- THIS LUCKY GIRL!
Hats off to this amazing artist for the inspiration.
My Colorful Romance
Deb's Stamp Pad
Passion For Paper
Prachee :)
To see all the entries for Week 18, please click here.  Be sure to click through their links and leave them a comment.

If you'd like to share what you're creating, please link up using the Link below. You have all week to join in.

Enjoy your weekend and thanks for checking in. xx

(Linking to Paint Party Friday and Art Journal Every Day)