Beardie Portrait #1

Acrylic, Painting, Step-by-Step

I’ve got so much to share! I thought about posting all the updates in one post but decided it’s more fun to track each project individually. Anyone feel differently? I’d love to know!

Last year I started this. It was going to be for a Beardies in Need charity event but I didn’t finish it in time. I’m hoping it can go in the raffle of the next event. I started right when I was getting back into painting, so it’s nice to see how far I’ve come already.

I really need some more very fine paint brushes. At the moment I’ve only got one and it’s looking worse for wear. I tried adding finer details and building up texture that way. It’s not an ideal way of working but I think I’m pretty happy with the results so far.

I’m worried about losing the depth of colour, especially as I add the lightest part of the fur (it’s basically white). I suppose I’ll know better when I go back to it with fresh eyes.

That’s all for now. I plan to tackle the right side next time.

Happy Easter everyone!

Julia

Josh and Bike #3

Acrylic, Painting, Step-by-Step

Hi all,

We’ve had more snow here. Luckily it hasn’t disrupted work this time, but it has been extra chilly. Perfect weather for being cosy inside, watching Harry Potter films and doing some painting.

In this post I showed a recent painting I’ve been working on. I’m going to give it to Josh’s first owner, the man who rescued him, when it’s finished. Unfortunately, he’s too unwell to look after him now but he still visits which is lovely!

This is the stage it was at:

I mentioned in the first post that I wanted to work on these things:

  1. I want to block out Josh’s toggle on his collar. It’s accurate, but kind of manky in real life.
  2. I need to add some shadow to the background.
  3. I’m really keen to find a super fine paintbrush and add lots of little details, especially to Josh’s fur!

I was especially keen to add some details into the background and get some practise at creating more realistic scenes. To start I worked on the top-left corner to give it some life. Here’s a few progress shots. Sorry for the odd lighting – I was too into it to remember to take photos when there was natural light:

I’m really pleased with how it’s shaping up, especially the bench, and I feel like my leaves are coming along. Come to think of it, most paintings I did last year involved painting leaves so I better be getting better! Here’s how it now looks overall, with an artificial pink hue:

It doesn’t make a huge difference to the overall impact yet, but doing the smaller details still takes me SUCH a long time. Still, I take much less time to plot out my basic shapes and get colour matches that I’m happy with so there’s definitely progress!

Here’s a summary of a few things I learnt from adding the details:

  • Sometimes, a wash is all you need.
  • JUST USE A TINY AMOUNT OF PAINT!
  • You can never have too fine a brush.
  • It’s more likely that you’ll accidentally make the painting too dark, rather than too light, so keep stepping away and checking the overall effect.

That’s all for now,

Happy week all!

A Couple of New Projects

Acrylic, Chatty, Ink, pen

Hi all,

Recently I’ve found it much easier to make time for art. Maybe you just need time to settle into a new year, or maybe it’s having that little bit more daylight. Either way, I’m trying to make the most of it.

Since I’ve recently painted a lot of pieces based on the garden, I’m getting a bit bored of the colour palette. Instead, I’ve started painting a version of this photo:

spainsunset2

It was taken in Granada, Spain, and when I finish I’ll give it to my parents. I’m not too far along yet so there’s only really the sky to show.

A couple of things I want to practise with this piece:

  • I’ve never really worked on the texture of clouds/the sky. Especially when it’s sort of wispy and blending together.
  • I want the colours to be really vivid. My paints aren’t the best quality in the world and up until now I haven’t used any extra materials with them. Usually I’d do a piece like this in oils but I just love how instant the results of acrylic are, so this’ll be a new challenge.
  • I want to show the detail in the from of the roof houses without overworking it or getting the wrong shape (I will be doing a cropped version of the original though). I guess this’ll need a suggestion of shapes but without looking blocky. Again, something to work on.

I’ll update you when I’ve got a bit more to show.

The second mini-project I’m working on (read: current doodles) are some absinthe spoon designs!

We took a day trip to Brighton (I’d never been) and passed an art shop. I don’t have any near me that sell copic markers, and I’d been meaning to try a few other colours since Inktober.

Teal (especially Duck Blue) is my favourite colour so of course that determined the colour palette. I found it so helpful limiting my colour choices when I used them before so I’m doing the same again.

The first thing I think of when I see that bright teal colour is absinthe and absintheries. In fact, it reminds me specifically of this beauty we passed in Prague:

IMG_0140.JPG

So when deciding what to use them for first, I thought I’d play around with some spoon designs where the sugar lumps would go.

Not the most practical, but then it’s all about the show really.

I’ll add more detail to them later. Starting it made me excited about inktober next year. It was such a good way to get some momentum and really prove something to myself. I’d highly recommend it to anyone.

That’s all for now, folks. Have a wonderful rest of the week!

Julia

Snow! Josh and Bike #2

Acrylic, Chatty, Painting, Step-by-Step

Hi all,

I planned to update earlier in the week but the snow threw all plans out the window!

I feel like I’ve been working, or thinking about work for the last 72 hours straight. Day 6 tomorrow but I’m feeling good! I won’t go into details, but we’ve done so well recently, and I’m proud of my team and of myself. It’s exciting and rewarding to think of our potential. Definitely worth the mission of getting into work.

Here’s a picture of Molly-Moo looking like a wild thing in the snow:

She loved it! Although she wasn’t such a fan of the ice-ball snow boots that formed around her legs. Josh is also generally less anxious in the snow. My theory is he had a good experience back before he was rescued so has nice associations. (That’s pure speculation by the way.)

Back in this post I showed the start of a painting. I’ve worked on it for a couple of hours more.

The biggest difference is that I’ve added some highlights to the grass, tweaked the scale of the bike, added some detail to the leaves and basket in the background and slightly changed the proportions of a couple of things.

Things I’ll continue to work on:

  1. I want to block out Josh’s toggle on his collar. It’s accurate, but kind of manky in real life.
  2. I need to add some shadow to the background.
  3. I’m really keen to find a super fine paintbrush and add lots of little details, especially to Josh’s fur!

Hope you’ve all been able to enjoy the snow and not been too disrupted by it.