Saturday, August 27, 2011

Cat Fish City Before and After

I finished this one today, painting it with watercolor and then outlining in black ink. I think it turned out pretty well. Pastel colored paintings like this don't show up as well online as the bright colored ones.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

House of Happy Cats painting

This is a recent painting, I just finished it last week! It is watercolor, acrylic and ink.

The reason it has acrylic is that I made a mistake. I started painting sky where the house was supposed to be. So I painted over it with acrylic. The rest of the painting is watercolor and ink.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tiger Lily Kitten

Here's another recent painting. This is watercolor and ink. I started by drawing on watercolor paper, then painted it in with watercolor. Then I did the background of the sky with permanent ink marker. That was a long process. I should have made it a bit less detailed but once I start a background I usually will just do the whole thing in the same way. Then I used a permanent ink marker to do the outlining.

I've noticed that a lot of my paintings feature orange cats, goldfish and tiger lilies but I don't think I have a painting with all three of them. I'll have to do one.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sleepy Spiral Cat before and after

It's amazing how much it changes after the watercolor and ink additions. I used acrylic paint for the moon and stars, and then outlined with ink.

Another Cat Painting and a Defense of Coloring Books

Here is another new old painting! It's probably four months old.

This is one I did when I first got my watercolor crayons and colored pencils. I was experimenting with the new media.

I have a couple of different techniques and styles of painting. This is one of my standard ones. I draw an outline with pencil, then color it in. Then I add details.

I have not thought about this for a long time, but when I was a child I used to really like coloring books, crayons and watercolors. I liked having outlines and coloring them in and experimenting with different color combinations. I think doing that a lot helped me as an artist.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I also had those paint by water books - where you would have a picture that was colored in by all these dots, and when you applied water with a brush it would turn into watercolor paint. I loved these!

I have heard from a couple of places that coloring books are bad for children and they stifle creativity. I don't think that's true - for me they helped me learn the use of color and how to use a brush. I learned how to stay in the lines! You don't have to always stay in the lines but it's good to be able to do it when you want to. They taught me the skills I needed to do my own art.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Watercolor Crayon Paintings in Progress

These look awful! But they will be good paintings once I complete a few more steps.

I start these by drawing a basic sketch on watercolor paper. Then I draw patterns and some details with colored pencils. Next I take the watercolor crayons and put some color and shading in.

Tomorrow I'm going to do the next step of using watercolor on top of these. That will make all the crayon parts turn into watercolor. I could just use water but I like to experiment with just a little more color. I may put in some metallic detail with acrylic paint, and then ink the outlines in.

I like this technique because I can do the first part in my home office at my desk. There's no water to spill! I will do the rest of it in my studio upstairs where the cats are not allowed.

It's also really fun to get the paintings to this stage and then see what happens to them when the water is applied. It feels magical.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

1 year ago

I was putting this up as one of my new paintings - well, new since I started updating this blog a lot. I was surprised when I looked at the date. It was painted on August 23, 2010.

This is watercolor and ink on watercolor paper, with acrylic paint highlights. It was painted for an online auction for a cat shelter.