Let’s go on an adventure! A rambling adventure with much back and forth and uhmmming and aahhhing and frustrations and joys! An adventure in painting!
As the proud owner of three wee little blank canvases and mother to a child with two wee little pet mice, I decided hey! Why not paint the furry little creatures! What a delightful idea!
The idea began as sketches. Those sketches were then transferred onto tracing paper and fleshed out. Those fleshed out sketches ventured forth to the canvas for placement…
But hark! A problem! These sketches are not looking great. No matter how I shift and twist and merge and push and pull, I am just not happy with their placement. It takes me a while, but I finally figure it out. The mice are too small on the canvas. They must be bigger! Bolder! MORE!
Yes! Yes! To the Tracing paper with ye!
And, with magic and witchery, to the canvas!
And now paint my lovelies! PAINT!
Neener screeech eekk urrr… We apologize for the loss of transmission. Please be assured that “stuff” happened and, several hours later, a completed painting emerged.
Thank-you for joining us on this journey. We hope that you had a pleasant experience and look forward to having you with us on our next adventure.
What is this? A time lapse of an Emote Painting process? A recording from a live stream?
Who is this person and what have they done with me?! Crazy abductions and mind altering madness!
Or maybe not that crazy?
Over the past week I have made a whole two emotes (go me!) and wow have I learned things. What things, do you ask? Well, apparently I belong to the Emote school of DERP. Huh, who woulda thunk?
I kinda like these giant eye-balled, overtly emotive little guys. So happy! So manic! I will totally be spending more time painting up these goofballs. And who knows, maybe I’ll be a chibi artist next. :O
Three years later, and Thell the fairy is getting her picture taken! To be fair, I did try three years ago, but it was just a crazy stressful mess. Mentally, I was not in the right place, but that’s a story for another day.
Today is for celebrating! Thell has a lovely bunch of sketches all ready for her story. One coloured, a bunch to go! I will admit that I almost gave up at the colouring stage. That was Photoshop’s fault. I don’t know why, but no matter what I seem to do, I always end up with pen pressure issues. I’ve had problems with randomly loosing pressure mid stroke and then it suddenly coming back again. I’ve had pen pressure just full on dropping and only coming back when I restart PS.
It was a mess and made the whole painting experience a nightmare. These are known issues. Other people have these issues. And I found myself wondering what I was paying a monthly sub for if stuff didn’t even work properly.
Enter Clip Studio Paint and love at first sight. Yup. It’s true. I’ve converted and couldn’t be happier. I have only scratched the surface of the program, but already the whole process feels more natural. More peaceful and more in line with how I work when I paint traditionally. I wish I had made the change sooner.
Over the next few weeks I will be cleaning up and colouring these sketches. If you keep an eye out, you may even catch some of the process live streaming on twitch. This is another new experience that I hope will grow into joyful hilarity.
If watching each and every snail paced tiny brushstroke while the artist mutters incoherent stuff is your thing, you can find me here: https://www.twitch.tv/actonart
For now, I hope you enjoy Thell’s sketches. Progress and process walk throughs to come. 🙂
Finally, it’s time for painting. I don’t have much to say about my process. I keep things fairly simple. No special tricks or magic tools, just a bunch of familiar steps built over years of painting practice.
Most of my paint is Windsor and Newton Professional Acrylic. I do have a couple of tubes of Galleria (Windsor and Newton’s student range) as well as some Atelier tubes, but for the way I work, the Windsor and Newton Professional range feel the best.
For brushes I use a large, square to wash in the background, but the rest of the painting is done alternating between three differently sized round brushes. As for the actual technique, I can best describe it as layering on thin washes of colour and softly (but quickly) blending lights into darks until I get the desired gradient.
In future, I would love to video the whole process, but I don’t really have the right setup for it. For now, I can offer a photographic journey.
With the sketch done, it’s time to prepare the canvas for painting. Word of wisdom, buy the canvas before deciding on what size to make your sketch. I, of course, did not work with this sort of wisdom and alas, when I went canvas buying, could not get the exact dimensions that I needed. The best canvas I could find was a little wider than the sketch, but not quite as tall.
With some tracing paper, a pair of scissors and ample floor space, I got to work making adjustments to my composition. Satisfied with the new positions, it was time to transfer. Another feat accomplished thanks to tracing paper. I make sure to put only the main lines down. They are fairly light on the canvas, and serve as a guide for the initial layers of colour.
Speaking of colour, I need to make some decisions on my palette choice. I paint out a few quick colour studies to get a feel for the atmosphere. For me, the yellow one best brings out the kind of vibe I’m aiming for.