Monday, October 18, 2010

Watermelon – The Drawing Board

Layers Cream_Canary Yellow

Layers of Cream and Canary Yellow

The piece has been sprayed with workable fixative so the graphite won’t smear into the colored pencil. I am now ready to apply color using Prismacolor colored pencils.

I applied a wash of Cream to the watermelon. I kept the white of the paper for highlight areas.

I applied a layer of Deco Pink (discontinued) to the flesh. Blush Pink can be used as a substitute for Deco Pink. Then, a layer of Pale Vermillion was added. I included Carmine Red for the darker red areas of the watermelon flesh.

I added Canary Yellow to the rind. These layers are extremely light for two reasons.

First, the workable fixative is slick so not many layers will adhere. Second, I don’t want the watermelon to overpower the drawing.

Layers Yellow Chartuese_Apple Green Layers of Yellow Chartreuse and Apple Green

Yellow Chartuese was added as a layer to the rind. Then, a layer of Apple Green was applied. I used Dark Green for the “veins”. Limepeel was added as a layer. I applied Apple Green for the darker green areas of the rind.

Layers Dark Green_Scarlet LakeLayers of Dark Green and Scarlet Lake


Back on the flesh, I added Poppy Red to the whole area. Then, Scarlet Lake was used in the darkest reds. The watermelon was looking too pale and very unripe, so I added Pink and Scarlet Lake to brighten it up.


Turner Complete2


Copyright 2010 Valerie Jones

I blended the whole watermelon piece with the Colorless Blender. It was then sprayed with another layer of workable fixative.

This drawing is ready for delivery to the little man who’s eating a yummy piece of watermelon!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Inner Well

Thoughtful Thursdays Copyright 2010 Valerie Jones

Have you ever had a piece of work going so well and all of a sudden there is no creativity flowing from inside of you? Yep, been there, done that? I’m currently in the middle of that crisis.

I have an obligation to fulfill and I have become fearful of the creative outcome. I want to tune it out. I am working out of my colored pencil comfort zone. I’m working in acrylic and want instant gratification.

I need to fill the well. Julia Cameron says in her book, The Artist's Way, “the artist brain is the sensory brain: sight and sound, smell and taste, touch.”

“In filling the well…think delight. Think fun. Do not think duty. Do not do what you should do…Do what intrigues you, explore what interests you; think mystery, not mastery.”

Aah..yes…Think mystery, not mastery. I’m thinking mastery instead of the mystery behind the paint.

So, how can I refill the inner well? Cooking sometimes does the trick for me. Any repetitive action helps. Sometimes I’ll just sit and draw. The repetitive motion of the pencil moving back and forth is therapeutic. Listening to music is a great way to get the creative juices flowing.

Julia Cameron also states, “Our focused attention is critical to filling the well. We need to encounter our life experiences, not ignore them.” So, instead of reading while you commute to work, pay attention to what’s around you. The images you see can help refill the dried up well inside of us.

So, how am I going to refill my dried-up well? I am going to listen to some worship music. Worship music is a great tool for me because our creativity comes from God. Why not give something back to Him in the form of worship?

If you get the chance to refill your inner well, I’d love to hear how it happened.

Next time on Thoughtful Thursday, I’ll write about people who we call Shadow Artists.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Artist Dates

Thoughtful Thursdays

Copyright 2010 Valerie Jones

I am a firm believer in artist dates.  What is an artist date, you say?  Julia Cameron describes it best in The Artist's Way, "An artist date is a block of time, perhaps two hours weekly, especially set aside and committed to nurturing your creative consciousness, your inner artist.  In its most primary form, the artist date is an excursion, a play date that you preplan and defend against all interlopers.  You do not take anyone on this artist date but you and your inner artist, a.k.a. your creative child.  That means no friends, spouses, children - no taggers of any stripe."

Oh, I've tried the doesn't work, trust me.  They will distract you more than you think.  Some of my favorite artist dates have been taking a nature walk, going to art galleries, going shopping alone (yes, shopping), a photography class, and going to the bookstore.  You might say, "a photography class has people".  Oh, but I got to sneak away alone and snap photos of nature at the wonderful land of Woolaroc!

A great artist date is this weekend at the Price Tower Family Arts Festival in downtown Bartlesville, Oklahoma.   If you don’t live around these parts, be on the lookout for such events in your neck of the woods.

Artist dates have a way of refilling the well.  They unlock creativity buried deep within us.  I'll write more on refilling that inner well next week on Thoughtful Thursday.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Tweaking the Portrait – The Drawing Board

Now that the graphite part of the drawing is near completion, it is time to re-visit each part of the face and darken darks and make any necessary corrections.

First stop, the eyes. The eyes need make considerably darker. Using a 2B pencil, I darkened the outer rim of the eye. I darkened the whites of the eyes with a 2H pencil.

Turner Graphite

I tweaked the left-facing eyebrow by blending again and pulling out some lights with the kneaded eraser.

I moved around the face and added some more darks that had faded during the drawing process.

After all the re-work was complete, I cleaned up the background and the watermelon with a kneaded eraser. Then, I sprayed the piece with Krylon Workable Matte Fixatif. This must be done in order for the watermelon to remain free of graphite. Workable matte fixative enables you to continue to work on the piece after it is sprayed. Other fixatives smooth over the surface and won’t allow continued work.

Next time on The Drawing Board, the watermelon.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Price Tower Family Arts Festival

FAF2010emailHeader2 I will be at the Price Tower Family Arts Festival on Saturday, October 9th.  If you are out and have a few minutes to spare, stop by and see my artwork.  It sounds like a fun day to be had by all!

The event is located downtown Bartlesville, Oklahoma at 510 Dewey Avenue.