Drawing Every Week 2018

Drawing of the Week– week 19

About a week or so ago, I went to the art store. You know what happened next. I bought things. Of course. A little more than I originally intended but not too much more.

I’ll show you the full ‘hull’ another time maybe, but today’s painting features two of them: Winsor & Newton Ink…


and Derwent’s watercolor paper


The more I do art and look at art and all that fun stuff, the more I realize what kinds of things I love and what kinds of things I want to draw. 

Giraffes are one of those things. 

DEW 19 giraffe

Their long necks and gangly bodies combined with their goofy faces, tufted ossicones (that’s what their horny things are called as I just learned; thanks Google), and spots make them into a majestic but also a rather awkward and silly looking creature. Especially with the facial expressions they make sometimes.

And I can’t help but like them for it. 

But back to the paper and ink.

I don’t have a lot to say about the ink. It’s black. Very black. It’s ink. Very inky. And it’s actually waterproof unlike my last black ink which– despite claiming to be– was very much not waterproof. It’s a good ink in other words.

There’s a little more to say about the paper, though I think I’ll be able to give a more thorough review when I try colored pencils on it– which, by the way, I’m very excited to try.IMG_8070.jpg

I’ve heard watercolor paper can be great for colored pencils but I’ve only ever had cold-press, which is too rough a texture for the detailed work I do. But this paper is veryy smooth. I just hope it’s not too smooth for building up colored pencil. . . that’s always a danger.

Because of aforementioned smoothness, the ink went on. . . well, smoothly. Super smoothly. So much so it wanted to do this cool unpredictable bleeding background. I could have evened it out if I wanted to but I liked the look and when it came to the giraffe and I cared about realism I didn’t have to fight it to get smoother washes.

I’m reallyy happy about that. And I bet my other colorful inks will react the same. In that case, the possibilities are endless.





Drawing Every Week 2018

Drawing of the Week– week 18

You thought it was going to be late again, but it’s not. Ha, take that.

It was a struggle getting it posted on time alright– I lost my camera in a tragic event (it got misplaced, that’s all) and then I kept adding things to the painting over and over again– but I did post it on a Monday for the first time in four weeks. It’s time to throw the confetti, people.

But enough about my wonderful and oh so impressive accomplishment; we’re here for the art.

DEW 18 bee eaters.jpg

I did this piece in something that’s swiftly becoming my favorite combo– ink and colored pencil. In fact, I’ve already started yet another one with the same subject matter. (Spoilers)

In my perfectionist mind, this piece didn’t turn out perfectly (but then again, when do I consider my art perfect?); however, I must say I am happy with it and definitely much happier than I expected I’d be for most of the process.

At first, I was afraid the birds looked too goofy– and they do indeed look rather goofy, to me in any case– but then I embraced the goofiness. Then I was worried the leaves might look too abstract, but now I think I kinda like the look and I wouldn’t want them to be so detailed they take the focus away anyway.

Then of course, I had to be worried about the background, that it would be too crisp and dark and not abstract enough, because you have to worry about every part of the process, but that turned out fine as well especially after adding some white.

But all-in-all it was enjoyable and all that worrying was for nothing. Well, it did help push me to come up with solutions I suppose, but still, a little unnecessary perhaps.

Maybe I was just staring at it for too long; that’s basically always bound to give you some troubles.

You start to see things, I tell you.


Drawing Every Week 2018 · Finished Pieces

Drawing of the Week- week 17


Generally, I veer away from using the same medium twice in a row because it feels wrong (don’t ask me why– I have no clue) and after doing one I’m bouncing to do something else, but there was no resisting this time. And so I ended up painting another gouache painting; this time a lion.

It’s definitely one of my looser pieces and honestly, I’m surprised with how well it turned out.

I did like how it looked better at an earlier stage but my loose drawings always end up looking sloppy. (To me anyway, though staring at a painting for hours and being an overthinker certainly doesn’t help)

This though, this is pretty good by my standards.

I’ve always wanted to do looser pieces. . . maybe I’ll be able to. One day. I’m still not quite there yet.

Drawing Every Week 2018

Drawing of the Week- week 16

The post is a day late once again, but the weekly drawing is done!

Last Saturday, I had my birthday and as you all know, birthday’s mean presents– art supplies, if you’re me.

This year I got these gouache paints:


Pretty much ever since I got my bottom-of-the-barrel cheap Reeves gouache paints– which I still loved– I’ve wanted some higher quality stuff.

Reeves is known for being extremely low quality, and even though I loved using the gouache paint I had despite that fact, it was largely because I was aware of how bad this particular kind was and I liked the gouache-ish qualities well enough to let it slide until I could get some better ones.

So after two years of patiently waiting I finally have some better ones! And oh, are they better. I could tell as soon as I swatched them.

Of course, what it really came down to was this test run that I did. And here we come to the actual drawing of the week: this quick study of some roses.

DEW 16 gouache roses.jpg
I know if I spent just a few more hours on this painting it would be much better but it serves it’s purpose well enough

My first impressions on this new, student-grade gouache is that it’s a lot smoother, thicker, richer, and– though it’s reworkable as gouache (other than Acryla gouache) is meant to be– it’s not patchy or overly liftable and fickle like the Reeves.

But best of all, it’s far more vibrant. That by far was my biggest complaint with the Reeves. Patchiness and fickle lifting can be really frustrating and hard to work around but I got familiar enough with it I could manage.

But when the quality of a certain brand gets in the way of the final piece– not just the process– that it really bothers me.

Dull colors is one of those things, and believe me, those Reeves really did dull.

True, I can always add my lovely colored pencils, but they can only do so much and I like to have an option to not use them. (Though let’s be honest, when do I ever not? I’ll probably end up adding colored pencil to this as well)

And now that I’ve gotten all my complaining about cheap art supplies out of the way, you can fully appreciate how happy I am to have these new paints.

The only problem is after having a taste of new art supplies, I feel like going on a shopping spree again.



Drawing Every Week 2018 · Thoughts & notes

Drawing of the Week– week 15

For this week I decided to– once again– tackle my higher quality acrylic paints and play around with those.

I didn’t have very high expectations going into this, and not in a very helpful way either more of a negative, let’s-just-get-this-over-with way.

I don’t really know what I wanted from this piece going in either. Adding the gold acrylic paint in wasn’t even part of the plan to begin with, it just kinda happened to be next to me. So much for planning right?

(I say that jokingly because I actually have been planning several pieces, it’s just all the behind-the-scene stuff at this point. I am keeping my word, I promisee)

Anyway, all I was expecting was to struggle with the acrylic paints as usual. And that did indeed happen. I was trying to get things perfect, trying to blend everything out smooth and render everything realistically and I couldn’t, as usual.

I just don’t have a lot of control with acrylic paint yet.

It was so hard to get a good photo of this with all the gold shimmer and even now it looks far better in person


Every time I fight it but after this piece I’m wondering. . . Should I really?

I’ll talk about it in the timelapse– which I tried so hard to get done (that’s why this is a day late)– but unfortunately I just can’t fit it in this week with all the crazy other things going on.

I’m leaving Friday morning to go to a singing event and after that I won’t really be back home until the end of the month, so I’m doing a whole lot of scheduling posts and making art and finishing up other projects and this is one of the things that we’ll just have to leave.

I’ll see you on Thursday!

Art Videos · Drawing Every Week 2018

Drawing of the Week– week 14

A few weeks ago we got these really juicy, flowey ink pens. They’re just for writing– nothing special or anything, but they go on so nicely and so darkly I couldn’t resist doing a little drawing with them.

Cinnamon and anise PR1.jpg

And as tends to happen with pens in order to shade properly, I ended up using a lot hatching, cross-hatching, and stippling.

It’s been a while since I’ve done these particular techniques on purpose. My last few ink drawings– if I remember correctly– had a mix of them, but it was mostly scribbles and the like. Very free-flowing and nothing too organized.


And as nice as that is, I do really like the look of the more organized product. Which I like better, is a totally different question and one I don’t have an answer to.

What’s interesting is that when I went into this week’s drawing, I didn’t have any plans of being organized– or unorganized for that matter– I just started, as I tend to do.

Very quickly I decided that I was going to go for that orderly approach and go (mostly) in one direction– up and down- but the original intent was. . . well pretty much nonexistant.

It wasn’t very set in stone even after that. It was just a thought, one I (for the most part) ended up following.

There’s a lot to be said for that way of going about things, and sometimes interesting things like this can happen, but even then I find in some ways it can be, well, boring and predictable.

And that brings us to the topic of the first of my (hopefully weekly) timelapse videos:


Drawing Every Week 2018

Drawing of the Week– week 13

This time the weekly drawing is this bulldog, who somehow manages to look furious even while he is shaking himself off.

DEW 13 dog wm.jpg

This piece is very reminiscent of one of my old ‘motion studies’. In fact, I made this one with that in mind.

Motion Study dog

I never did get around to finishing those motion studies. . . Maybe someday I will. Maybe when I have better gouache that isn’t such a pain to work with (I still love you, gouache)

Until now, I’ll have to continually resort to layering my gouache with colored pencils for brighter colors and overall less patchiness. (Though to be honest, I don’t know if I’ll ever stop. I just love the precision colored pencils give me too much)