Posts Tagged ‘art!’

October ArtSnacks (and Related Thoughts)

I got my ArtSnacks last week! Very exciting. Good to try new things. And find that you dislike all of them. (I would put a laughing emoji here if I could figure out how.)

Here’s my #artsnackschallenge pic for the month (and the supplies used to make it).

Octopus

Let’s go through each thing like we did last month.

Plumchester Paint Marker
It’s pink. I suspect, like the paint marker last month, that this would be great if I knew what I was doing. And wasn’t afraid of color. (At least this one is harder to drip paint on the carpet with. And you can reverse the nib so there’s different shapes to color with.) It’s thick acrylic paint.

Sennelier Ink Brush
So, essentially, this is a brush with the paint built into the handle. Mine is bright yellow. (The color’s a little off in the picture. It’s a lemon sort of color.) I have a travel watercolor set with brushes where the water goes in the brush itself, so this works the same way more or less, except with less steps and supplies. I like it, it flows nice, but it does seem like you’ll go through the paint fairly quickly and then have to buy another $8 brush pen. We’ll see!

Winsor & Newton Fineliner
Mine’s brown. It is quite fine, but it’s not waterproof, and when I was erasing the pencil lines around the octopus, I found that my eraser was erasing the fineliner as well (I used it for the sucker cups), so that’s less than ideal. Definitely going to stick with the Microns for now.

Royal Talens Indian Ink
Ah! Real ink! In a bottle! It’s very black and dries nice and quick. And doesn’t erase with the eraser, what the heck. I have hidden the bottle from the small, mobile ones, because that’s a terrible combination.

Speedball Standard Pen Nib Holder and No. 512 Pen Nib
I’ve never drawn with ink and a nib, because it’s always seemed very intimidating (and also, I am a klutz, and having an open bottle of ink is a bad idea). But it’s not bad! I have better control than I thought I would. The nib holder is pretty simple but does seem like it could hold lots of different types of nib, and the nib itself is fairly versatile, as long as you want to stay on the more narrow side.

The ink/nib combo is my favorite thing out of the bunch. It was much easier to use than I’ve always feared.

So far, when I’ve gotten a new box, I’ve done a silly page to try out the stuff before I do my official picture, so here’s the one for this box (cuz there’s a landsquid):

Scribbles

(It’s crinkly cuz it’s on the back of an experimental style I was trying out, where you sketch in colored pencils and then wash watercolor over them, but I think the pencils activated a bit with the water, so it’s more abstract than planned.)

I was also playing with some new brush pens (also Sakura Microns, because) last week, making flower wreaths:

black and white wreath
Colored wreath
Colored with watercolors

I like the texture the brush pens add to a drawing.

Art! Distracting me from my writing. Whoops.

I think I’ll give ArtSnacks one more month and then take a break. It is nice to try out new things, but I don’t necessarily want to accumulate a lot of supplies that I’m not really going to use in the long run.

(Although, if I get more paint markers in various colors, maybe I could experiment more with using them and figure out what I want to do with them. Maybe.)

Oh, the snack this month was a cherry Dum-dum. Good flavor. Dare I say candy is not really a snack? Candy is not really a snack. Though I suppose they are allergen free if you avoid chocolate.

Anyway! Still having fun. Hope you’re doing something to stay sane too, squider!

Landsquid Sketches

Sorry, squiders, no Red Mars discussion today. We’ve had a really bad week, personally, around these parts, and I’m just not done.

(I’m close, but I don’t see any way it’s going to happen today, around everything else that’s going on. Plus each section has a different point of view character and I’m super not digging being in the current one’s head, especially after [spoilers].)

So, instead, I’m going to share some landsquid sketches. I think I told you guys that I’m trying out a few online courses on drawing, coloring, and shading, with the idea of doing children’s books (both picture and chapter books) with illustrations. I did a digital coloring class last week (you can see the results of that over at the Turtleduck Press blog), and this week I’m doing digital sketching and character design.

I have a wacom tablet that my spouse got me several years ago. I used it for a bit (you might have seen the results here on the blog), but when I switched to my current two-monitor set-up, the graphics drivers couldn’t seem to manage the tablet correctly, and I had to stop using it.

But I’ve plugged it back in, and since I had to get a new computer about a year ago, apparently this one can handle both the dual monitors and the tablet, so hooray! We’re back in business.

Except, of course, that I find there’s a bit of a learning curve drawing with the tablet. See for yourself.

landsquid sketches

(They’re light because the class recommends sketching in a light color so they’re easier to “ink” later.)

I’m trying out different eyes, obviously–the center one is the way I’ve always drawn landsquid (for almost ten years now–wow!) but I’ve always found it a bit hard to do expressions. Any preferences on the eyes? I kind of like the anime-style ones (far left) but I’m not sure they’re any better expression-wise. But the ones with pupils look weird to me.

I don’t know. Even when I was using the wacom before, I never found it as natural to use as just drawing on a piece of paper. So we’ll see if it gets better.

Anyway, thanks for understanding, squiders. Red Mars on Tuesday even if it kills me, and more outlining on Thurs–wait, Thanksgiving. Um, Friday.

Reminder to Move Your CreateSpace Books (and the Promised Landsquid)

First, landsquid!

Ghost Landsquid

Boo!

Secondly, I wanted to remind everyone who has been using CreateSpace that the service is closing, and if you haven’t yet, you should look at moving your paperbacks over to KDP (which is replacing it). Amazon will eventually automatically move everyone who’s left.

There have been some issues with the transfer–some people have reported that their metadata got lost in the move. Mine transferred, but it’s worth going through, since, depending on when you published the book on CreateSpace, you get more categories/keywords over at KDP. Plus it doesn’t hurt to occasionally book them to make sure your book is placed appropriately.

See you next week, Squiders!

Under the Weather

uuuuugh, school’s barely been going for a week and they’ve already brought germs home.

So in celebration of my face being full of snot, have a landsquid. He looks how I feel.

sick landsquid

I’ll see you Thursday, squiders, unless I have to go in for jury duty. In which case, I probably won’t. See you, I mean.

Away til 2018

Squiders, I have lost my voice. This has made my normal wrangling of puppies and small, mobile ones more infuriating than usual.

But, anyway, I’ve got a full household, so I’m going to declare a hiatus here at the blog until Thursday, January 4th. I shall see you then!

Sad landsquid with tea

(Have a sad landsquid who is also drinking Throat Soothing tea, which tastes terrible. Bleeeehhhh. And I don’t even know if it’s helping.)

Happy holidays, squiders, and I shall see you on the flip side.

(Also, if anyone has tips for getting one’s voice back, please share!)

Dramatic Interlude

No landsquid today, Squiders–my holiday weekend was overstuffed (pun intended, haha) and I’m still recovering from it on some levels. Thursday, I promise, and if I’m wrong I shall let the Alpaca have my favorite hat, even though he will probably eat it.

So, moving on. I’ve always said that it’s good to try new creative things every now and then. I think it helps one grow as a writer and/or an artist, helps clear the mind, and gives one experience they can apply to whatever their main creative occupation is.

With that in mind, Saturday I am going to try out for a musical.

Am I terrified?

You bet!

My local community theater is doing Into the Woods, which admittedly I know nothing about aside from it being a Sondheim musical and a mixture of fairy tales. And that Chris Pine rips his shirt off during a song in the movie version (which I have checked out from the library, but still not actually watched).

Am I expecting to get a part, or even make it to call backs? Not especially. I am what I would call a competent singer–I can sight read, have good rhythm, and can stick to my own part in a multi-part song–but I don’t think anyone will ever say I have the voice of an angel. I was an Alto II in high school and an Alto I in college, but I can usually do the mezzo soprano and Soprano II ranges without any issues. On the other hand, I have had a death cold for about a month and it’s only within the last few days that I can sing at all.

Musicals and I don’t have an especially good relationship anyway. I didn’t get cast in a single one in high school, despite being in the advanced women’s choir and also a regular lead in non-musical plays. I was only onstage for my senior one because one of the chorus (a freshman, alas) dropped and they needed to replace her. And I’m pretty sure high school was the last time I tried out for one.

But it never hurts to try, right? Experiences! Variety! Theater-based mysteries! (A friend and I went to see Curtains about a month ago, which is a musical about a murder during a musical, and it was lovely and I enjoyed it a lot.)

And maybe I’ll actually get a part, and then get to sing, by myself, in front of all sorts of people…

But maybe dressed as a princess! That would be okay.

But first, I need to pick–and learn–an audition song.

Have you tried anything new lately, Squiders? How did it go?