Making Books With Ugly Colours

lesson 8 with Carla Sonheim

Imagine combining colours that you don’t necessarily like and creating a piece of art with it. That was the assignment from Carla in her Year Long Class 2021.

To add another element of interest we were to use old pieces of art that we no longer liked and cut it up into rectangles. On the unpainted side we added four colours that we don’t normally use or just dislike. I’m not much of a purple person so I used dark purple, dark green, bright pink and pale pink. Here’s what the original side looked like and then you’ll see the newly painted side with ‘ugly’ colours. I’m sure some of you won’t consider these colour ugly and I have to admit that they did grow on me.

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Once the paint dried, each rectangle was cut in half and each half with folded in half. Then the pieces were all stacked together to create a small book and I sewed the pages together with book binding thread. This process created two books.

In the first book I added collage, stickers, marks in black and white ink and I wrote words. Here is the first book I created.

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I Immediately Saw a Pig

….after laying down random splashes of watercolour

Once I saw the pig I couldn’t get him out of my mind so I knew that I had to include him in my next intuitive art piece. After I drew the pig I started to see other animals and of course more flowers appeared.

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Looking for Shapes in Splashes of Colour

Pam Garrison was a guest artist recently on Carla Sonheim’s Year Long Class and treated us to a lesson using random splashes of watercolour to create an art piece. Once the paint dried we had to look for shapes and bring them out with outlines of black ink.

In this piece I saw mostly flowers and some birds.

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Meditative Art Practice

it’s been too long since I last posted my art

I’ve always enjoyed sharing my art on this blog but several weeks ago I had a very upsetting and unfortunate experience with an internet troll. For a few posts I was getting long and horrible comments from an unknown person. I was told that my work was crap, that I shouldn’t call myself an artist and that I should give up on art. I blocked this person but they came back under a different name and started to insult my husband’s art as well. In both cases I blocked the comment and reported it as spam but the damage to my ego was profound.

Many friends told me to let it go and I did continue to make art. For awhile I only posted on group sites on Facebook and on Instagram. One of the first pieces that I posted after the negative comments was a very simple mediative exercise where I was instructed to make small circles all over my paper with watercolour. When I was done I wasn’t exactly thrilled with the outcome so I started to add details with black ink.

After posting it on the art group page that I belonged to I was shocked by the positive comments and the number of likes. The last time I looked on the page I had 714 likes and 60 positive comments. This was certainly a boost to my ego and inspired me to continue making art.

Here is the piece that brought me back from the doldrums.

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You’re a Hoot

….day 4 of Sketchbook Revival with Tamara Laporte

In one of today’s Sketchbook Revival classes we meet Tamara Laporte. I’ve watched some of her classes before but I think this is the first time I’ve completed an assignment. It was a lot of fun and I think I may go back to her site and try some more.

This owl was first sketched with pencil and then watercolour was applied. Along the way marker, ink, pencil and acrylic paint pens were used to add detail.

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Art in My Sketchbook – Part 3

….on day 2 of Sketchbook Revival we meet Leanne Oliver and Sarah Matthews

Leanne walked us through an exercise she calls Cracks in the Road. She loves to make marks in her paintings and she finds that this process helps her with her art. The steps involved wetting some watercolour paper and adding a little bit of neutral acrylic paint over part of the surface. Then she took a charcoal pencil and drew lines from a photograph of cracks in the road. Then she wet the lines so that the charcoal would bleed out a bit. After that she took Gesso and applied a coat over some of the areas and while it was still wet she went over the lines again but this time with pencil. Then she added some colour using a soluble coloured pencil or pastels and more water.

The whole process was a lot of fun and I can see how I might use this technique in my next painting. Here are the two samples that I did.

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Sarah Matthews is a print maker and she makes her own stamps. I thought I had a block of material to carve into but I’ve either used it or couldn’t find it. I’m hoping to order some more so that I can try her art lesson at a later date. Stay tuned for that one.

Art in my Sketchbook – Part 2

yesterday I started the Sketchbook Revival lessons

The first lesson is with Danny Gregory who is the founder of Sketchbook Skool. He had us find an interesting shoe to draw and we had to gather up a variety of drawing tools, like markers, pencils, crayons, pastels, watercolour, etc.. Then he timed us as we were drawing our shoes and we had to change our drawing implements about every 30 seconds. It was actually a lot of fun. Here is my finished piece.

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Our second teacher yesterday was Carla Sonheim. I’ve taken dozens of classes with her and love her style. Her lesson was based on one-liner drawings where you quickly draw and object with lifting your pen off the paper. We had to draw cats, flowers in a vase, an elephant and a toilet.

Then we had to pick our favourite drawing and create a new drawing but this time we didn’t have to make it all in one line. She also encouraged us to use bits of paper to collage into our books and draw one of our characters around the paper. Here are some of my cats and my elephant.

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We were also encouraged to add some colour to our final characters.

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Art in my Sketchbook – Part 1

I haven’t posted any art for awhile

I haven’t worked on any large pieces lately. My focus has been mainly on drawing in my sketchbook. I signed up for two classes. One was with Lewis Rossignol called
Sketchbooking and the other is a two week class with Karen Abend called Sketchbook Revival. The latter is a free set of classes with 27 artists that each give a lesson that takes about 30 minutes. Sketchbook Revival is free and you can still sign up. https://www.karenabend.com/sketchbook-revival-2021/

Lewis’s focus is on being loose and not too precious with your sketchbooks. In fact he encourages you to mess up your pages a bit so that it is easier to start drawing. He likes to work in ink, pen, and pencil and he uses collage to add interest and balance.

Here are a few of the sketches that I did after watching his lessons.

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I will post my art from Day 1 of Sketchbook Revival in a post tomorrow.