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InkTober anyone?

Its getting to be that time of year again for artists around the world to partake in a fun month long drawing challenge called ‘InkTober’. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, it was started by Jake Parker as a way to improve his inking skills every day for a month. Since then, its taken off and spread all over the world connecting artists together and showcasing some very amazing work.

Last year was my first time ever hearing of it. It was last minute when I decided to participate and I didn’t make it through the month. I followed the prompts that were provided from InkTober.com but I found myself at a loss. Instead of using it as a way to improve my inking or just to commit to the challenge, I felt inadequate and out of my league. So I gave up when I shouldn’t have.

A year has past now and I have more confidence in my skills to successfully complete the challenge. I don’t know what my inking will look like but I know that I can take my time and do what needs to be done and keep pushing to move forward.

I plan on posting a video every day of InkTober, which is another challenge in itself but hey we’re all a little crazy from time to time! I encourage you to take part in something like this, it doesn’t have to be an art challenge, just find something to improve on. Challenge yourself for 30 days. See what your results are in the end. I bet you won’t regret it!

Here is the 2017 InkTober art supply haul I made!!

Disney princesses as comic book characters

So in my latest video I explain how I wanted to approach drawing out this concept. But I didnt really go into how I came up with this idea.

When I first thought of it I was watching my daughter play with her Wonder Woman doll she got for her birthday. I thought to myself that this was the same little girl that loved Frozen and now equally loves Moana. Here she sits, playing with a super hero doll pretending to battle some pretend villain and completely oblivious to the fact that I have just been sitting and watching her.

After a while I asked what she was doing, so she went into detail about what her mind had conjured up about Wonder Woman and all her little adventures. I then asked her if she still liked Disney movies and she said “Oh yes.” She paused for a moment and turned to me, “What if Wonder Women was a Disney princess?!” The thought took her away to some unknown land and I went with her.

I started thinking about super heroes as Disney princesses and how cool that would look. I imagined Storm from X-men right along side of Elsa creating storms of lightning and ice and the imagery in my head was nothing short of amazing. I went further down into the rabbit whole and started imaging Disney girls as super heroes and thus another YouTube video was created. So take a look and let me know what you think, who is your favorite and who you would like to see next.

RIP Camera (you annoying piece of….)

So I decided it would be a great idea to record today’s YouTube video this morning. I am fully aware of my equipment’s age and lag, not to mention the new slower speed of WIFI I now have in my thanks for being in the middle of farm lands. Even with all of that plus set up time for the camera and art supplies needed for the video, I still thought to myself, ‘what the heck’. Well, that’s just what I got. Heck.

Not only did it take me forever to get the makeshift tripod to stabilize, I also had a time with the paints. Once I got through that, I took my literal 10 year old digital camera off the charger and began recording. It took me roughly 2 hours to complete the painting, I sketched it out the night before to save me time, and I took a look at my camera. I noticed the battery was already dying so I saved the file and put it on the charger for 30 minutes.

I went back to take a look at the camera and use it one more time to film the end result painting and right before eyes are the words ‘corrupted file error’. What in the world am I supposed to do with that. And I even put the memory card into my computer and nothing showed up. Nothing. I was told to reformat my card, meaning that everything on it needs to be deleted.

Oh I know what you are thinking, my husband probably saved the day with a cup of coffee for me and what you are about to see i another ‘Cup of Coffee for today‘ comic.  But that didn’t happen either. He was busy being super dad outside with the kids after making their lunch.

I am not going to lie, I felt terrible. Utterly disappointed. I couldn’t believe it was happening and I really just wanted to cry. The picture came out nicely, which I posted below, but I have been working my butt off to keep up with a YouTube posting and it just wasn’t the time for it. Of course, when is there a really good time for everything to simply fall into the toilet?

So now I am working on my kickstarter campaign a little bit faster to help me with a project I have and to get some extra money for better equipment. I will post all of the details for it when its nice and polished! In the mean time, enjoy today’s beautiful painting that had a botched video recording!

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Maybe I should just go and color in my own coloring book!

Today’s cup of coffee – Too early

The night before I had not slept well at all. Constantly struggling to get comfortable with my 8 month pregnant belly and my 4 year old kept finding her way in my bed. So when I finally woke up that morning it was, of course, before everyone else woke up. I decided to get up and make breakfast for the family.

I walked downstairs and was greeted by two large dogs who were still getting the sleep from their bones. I let them outside to use the bathroom, gave them fresh water and food, and washed my hands. I looked in the fridge to see what I could make quickly and enough of so I didn’t have to spend my first 2 hours of my day cooking for ever growing hungry children. I decided the 3 dozen eggs I had would suffice for cheesy scrabbled eggs.

I grabbed the non stick pan, butter, cheese and eggs and got to cooking. Once the butter began to melt I started cracking the eggs. I got about three eggs in when I realized that the 4th and 5th eggs were in the trash and the shells were in the pan. Normal and more aware people would scoop out the shells and continue on with cooking. Not me. I stared at the pan for an unnecessary amount of time before turning the stove off and moving the pan off the burner.

Wishing my husband were awake to brew the coffee, I walked to the coffee pot and made it myself (poor poor me). I poured myself a nice hot cup of caramel flavored coffee and finished it before addressing the problem in the pan.

For your own piece of mind, I did get all the shells out of the pan and proceeded to make a successful breakfast before someone came downstairs.

For this comic I decided to make a video of me coloring the comic page

Here are some newer videos of mine that I have uploaded. Stop by my channel to see more videos and subscribe to my channel and like my videos

Today’s cup of coffee – In Tune

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Recently I found my sketchbook from last year and started thumbing through it. I came across some old character drawings I did and thought it would really fun to do the ‘Draw this again’ challenge where you take an old drawing and redo it to see the difference in your skill or just to make some changes. The character I chose was one I created when I first got my markers but instead of using markers again, I chose to use watercolor and ink (a technique I love to use).

I decided to film this challenge for my YouTube channel. I also used a much larger paper because I have always preferred to draw bigger and sketch smaller. I charged my very old camera, about a 10 year old by the way, and started recording. I was able to get a the base of the picture and the inking done before it died. Usually, I can predict when it will die so I can stop the drawing and charge it up again. But, from what I can assume, the battery is nearing its end in general so it died before I could realize it, thus sending my pregnant and emotional self spiraling down in a pit of anger.

(Side note- This kind of frustration, that happens more often than it should, could easily be avoided if I just upgraded my camera equipment. This is something I am working towards.)

Through low angry rumblings under my breath, kids giggling at me while I try not to throw the camera through the window, I plug in my camera to the charger and sit and stew in front of my unfinished piece, staring at it, feeling as though I won’t finish. I hear a small thud on my table and I look over to see a fresh cup of coffee and my husband just setting it down and walking away quietly, as to not further irritate his dragon of a wife.

The smell overcame me. I grabbed the cup and took a long sip. It was so refreshing on so many levels. Thankfully, I started to ease up and take a few extra deep breaths. I looked out of the window and saw that my husband went on the back porch to lay out and converse with the kids. My full on irritability had turned into a mild annoyance and I got up and went to sit and talk with everybody. After all, what was staring at an unfinished piece of artwork work and watching a slow blinking blue light on a dying camera going to do for me?

I was able to pull it off the charger and finish recording the last little bit I had left. If you want to take a look, watch below or visit my channel to see that and other drawing challenges. And remember, while you are watching it, that a simple cup of coffee and gesture of love helped to finish that art piece. 🙂

Take a look inside the books!!

I have finally created videos giving you the inside look to my coloring books that were published last year! I uploaded them on YouTube and added them below for your convenience. Click here to order yours from Amazon or you can get a signed copy from my shop

Finding my goal as an artist

Lately I’ve been thumbing through all of  my artwork on hand. I have noticed so many changes and more importantly growth over the years. I haven’t always made or posted a new artwork for social media on a set schedule or even every month, but I have kept up with working on my art. But there’s one thing that has really stood out and it really bothered me.

I have not kept up with a certain style art.

I have used so many different mediums and learned so much about them. I always used them in ways that other artists used them. And instead of using those techniques and that knowledge to my own advantage, I would just use it the way others did. And from what I can tell, it held me back.

I can recall saying to myself or close friends and family ‘I want to be a graphic novelist’. I love telling stories and I have a vivid imagination. I can draw out scenes and characters based on words and produce a captivating picture. And while I’ve known this and wanted to accomplish that goal, nothing was ever done about it.

Over time, I noticed I would produce cool sketches, fantasy art or fan art (which is an art I love). I would always take on commission portraits that would stress me out and take too long for the little pay. My previous art never followed anything specific and always  appeared scattered.

I noticed that I keep coming back to a particular style. With my characters outlined and the background of a picture in watercolor, Its a style I associate with comics and graphic novels, story teller artists. I draw in this way without thinking and it feels like I’ve been telling myself for years to draw in this way.

So what am I going to do with this newfound knowledge?

Embrace the style that I can natural go with and see where it takes me. I can use it to my advantage by furthering a new aspect in my artwork that isn’t just style, such as, technique, color blending, proportion, perspective etc. I fully expect, and hope, that my art will evolve in this style into something more than I can achieve now.

This will also give me a bigger platform to relate to fans of my work. They can count on me being consistent and will expect to see a style that speaks to them the same way it speaks to me. This is not only good from an artist to viewer perspective but in a business sense also. Showing my style in different subjects greatly opens up doors for opportunities that ‘just being someone who can drawn’ can do. Being artistic in your own sense has a better uplifting power and freedom for your work.

Find your style of creativity and run with it.

Until next time….