Check out my new portrait of Jezza through the link on my portfolio at the top of this page or the ‘Latest Portfolio’ thumbnail in the right side bar.
Archive for the ‘Doodle art blogg’ Category
Australia. Doggy Doodles, pet portraiture, has completed another portrait. Known for portraits of our k-9 friends and companions alike, Doggy Doodles has created another human and dog portrait for display. Go to ‘portfolio’ and select ‘My Best Friend’… or click on the display icon on the right of the home page.
Available for viewing now! Latest Doggy Doodles Portrait of Sam. Click the Sam icon link in the right column under ‘Latest Portfolio’ or the ‘Portfolio’ link at the top of this page.
The amazing art of Manfred Stader. Street art is admired all over the world for its amazing 3d effect and its realism. Three dimensional masterpieces produced on two dimensional surfaces requires special skills and a knowledge of anamorphosis…..read more, view pictures…. http://www.3d-street-art.com/
Sand Art from around the world. And we thought we could make great sandcastles on the beach when we were kids. These brilliant sand constructions make me feel a tad inadequate. Mind you, sand art is big business these days and can attract considerable sums of prize money…any wonder that these temporary masterpieces border on creative genius?….check these out…
Julian Beever. Some people have heard of him, some have not. But for those in the know, Julian Beever is an amazing artist, who usually works with chalk, and likes to showcase his creations in 3D on sidewalks. When Julian finishes his work, he likes to pose interacting with his masterpiece, which only serves to make his creation or the more real. See more…
Norfolk. Kieron Williamson, a seven year old boy who is more interested in art and creating art than he is in football, is becoming a celebrity in his home town of Holt, as people clamour to buy his latest creation, and waiting lists grow for more.
Some experienced artists are comparing Kieron to Picasso, who painted his first canvas at eight. Keiron has been painting since he was five… read more…
From time to time I like to give tips about what I have observed over the years, what I have read, what I have learned through experience, and what I have learned through study and practical work at college and university. This one comes from something that I have read in an artists book.
So…which is your dominant eye? You can use your ‘dominant eye’ to judge the relative position of objects. This can help ensure that your drawing or painting is as accurate as it can be.
It helps in the process to choose two vertical objects, one just slightly behind the other. Looking through a door in your house to something standing vertically a few feet away would be ideal. You can stand a few feet, maybe about eight to twelve feet away from objects, and look closely at the alignment of the objects. Cover one of your eyes with your hand so that you can only see out of the other – and keep looking at the objects. Now, don’t move and change eyes, covering other eye with hand and looking at the object with opposite eye.
Ok, now look at the objects with both eyes uncovered again. You should be able to identify which eye observed little or no change, and which eye noticed a shift in the objects. The eye which observed little or no change with both eyes open is your dominant eye.
I would consider myself an artist. I call myself an artist. How good I am would depend on my natural talent, my own experience, passed down experience of others, and perhaps even the opinions of others – no matter if the critique is placed in the positive or the negative.
Over the years I have become able to observe many things because I am an artist – objects, potential subject, how things move, light, and how different colours behave in different settings. Colours are interesting things. They can create mood, convey a feeling, create harmony or chaos. We have a sense of what a piece is ‘about’, based on what kind of palette the artist uses.
I am interested in not only the visual impact that my work has, but the feeling that it conveys. At times I am restricted in my palette, because of the nature of my portraits – animals. But restriction creates harmony when the right colours are selected. I may not always select what looks like the ‘appropriate’ colour for my subject, but when blended with another, it may create something that I may not have been able to achieve with just one pencil. An awareness of primary colours, and how secondary and intermediate colours are achieved through mixing comes in handy for those ‘tricky’ ones, where I just can’t seem to find the right pencil.
Colour is an important part of all our lives. A new artist will use this basic knowledge and seek to create colour harmonies and new colour schemes. Over time the new artist will develop their own style as their eye for colour improves.
Northern Territory, Australia. A red orche depiction of two giant extinct birds on an overhanging rock, discovered on the Arnhem Land Plateau, predates European settlement – and could be up to 40,000 years old.
The large painting was discovered by members of the Jawoyn Association Aboriginal Corporation two years ago during a routine patrol, but archeologists have only visited the site in the last month. Read more…
So you’ve decided that you want to begin a drawing and you’ve got your materials and subject matter together and started your sketching using basic shapes like rectangles, circles, squares and triangles to depict the overall shape of your subject. Next you would have gone over the shapes with a rough sketch and a little shading here and there to depict shadows and light. You’re not sure where to go from here because it looks so daunting.
Generally there’s a time in the process that I look at the original photograph and squint my eyes, so that I can pick up the placement of light and dark and overall colours. I tend to this this quite a bit, as it allows me to get a sense of where everything ‘sits’ in the portrait, and gives me a better perspective. Squinting blurs your vision, but allows you to see ‘the big picture’ – the lights and darks and the general shapes that are important to the picture.
Try to keep the drawing as simple as possible at this stage. Work from the larger bits of the portrait to the smaller. I tend to make sure I have the outline in proportion and the main lines before I start filling in any of the details. It is very difficult to change something later on if it hasn’t been proportioned right, and can be disheartening.
Buying art supplies can often be a bit of a hit and miss, especially when you are just starting out and don’t really know exactly what you are looking for and what you may need. I still have a load of stuff sitting in my cupboards that I don’t really use.
Over the years I have experimented with things and found the right type of tools and mediums that have been appropriate in my journey towards my ‘ultimate’ portrait.
Art shops can be a minefield, either of valuable information, or overstimulation of your senses, but I love them. I have my favourite shops that I go to, usually the bigger ones that have a lot of different things under the one roof. There are advantages and disadvantages to both visiting an artshop and opting to go online for your art supplies.
I tend to use my art supply shops moreso than the online shops, but that doesn’t mean that the online shops are not as reputable. I just prefer to be able to touch and feel, using my senses, and of course there’s always a friendly assistant lurking to help you in your quest for a particular product or something new that you may want to try. But for convenience of purchase at the click of a button, you can’t go past a reputable online store. If you know what you want and are familiar with the process, then this is the way to go. You can save money on the cost of purchase buying online, but make sure that the cost of delivery doesn’t negate your savings. Also make sure that the delivery process is straight forward. I’ve had good carriers and I’ve had bad ones.
Above all, enjoy your experience, either in the store or online. If in store, talk to people, you will gain insights into other people’s art experiences. Some people are only too happy to impart knowledge, and don’t forget the assistants, that is what they are there for. If online, trawl the sites and see how much information and free advice that they are prepared to offer you. Some offer plenty, some offer none at all. Look around and learn lots.
Now that you’ve got the basic shapes organised and on paper, and you have lightly sketched a basic outline of the dog around it, stop and have a look at it. It is probably better than you imagined you could actually put together all by yourself. The most important thing to do is make sure you have the dimensions right for the size of the dog. Once you get the dimensions right and have the basic shapes organised, you can probably draw almost any animal you think you can’t! Getting the basic shapes right is very important for the the basic structure of your drawing.
You can now either leave those basic shapes there, or you can lightly rub them out, keeping the outline in place. It is not important at this stage to rub out the basic shapes, until you feel more confident with your sketchings at least. It still works for me in many ways.
Now you can start going over your lighter outlines a little, adding a few more lines and definition to your sketching, not too heavy, as you may still want to change it later on. Now’s the time to really look at your original picture of your dog. What type of hair does your subject have? Where is the light coming from, and where do you need to do some shading on your subject? It would be also important to ‘ground’ your subject, so he doesn’t look like he’s floating in mid air. Add a few pencil strokes to look like grass around his feet, and perhaps observe the shadow he is casting and shade it in along with the grass.
Jagged lines can be randomly drawn to give the impression of a long haired dog. Shorter, straighter lines for a dog with short hair, and shading and swirls for curly haired dogs. I emphasise shading is very important in your sketching. Carefully observe where the shading is on and around your subject, in the fur, on the ground, on the face. The more you get the shading right, along with your more detailed sketching, the more your dog will look like the real thing, and you like the champion drawer you intend to be!
When I first started to draw as a child, I used to draw animals. They were my favourite things to draw. Drawing animals seem to be a favourite for a lot of people.
I started drawing birds, dogs and cats. I used basic shapes like triangles for the head and ears, squares and oblong shapes for the body and long, rectangular shapes for the legs. After a lot of practice I could put them all together in reasonable proportion and make something look reasonably similar to my subject.
I still do the same things at times even now. I start with a basic shape of the head, the body and the legs. All dogs come in different shapes and sizes of course, so you have to use different sized basic shapes…simple!
I start by looking at the whole body of the dog, or just the face and shoulders…depending on what I am asked to draw. Then I determine what basic shapes are involved. Sometimes the face may look like a triangle. Sometimes it may be more square or circle shaped. I draw the shape I think it is lightly on the paper. Then I might look at the ears…they may be triangular or even circular. I add them too.
The body may be square looking, rectangular looking, or even round. Go with the basic shapes and put them together. You will be surprised when you come up with a basic structure of the animal you intend to draw. Don’t forget to go lightly. You can rub it out when you start to lightly sketch the outline of the dog over the shapes. You will be surprised how much more confident you feel about drawing your dog if you have some basic shapes in place. Remember to keep your sketching light and don’t worry about making mistakes. You can rub them out later on when you feel a little braver about some shading and darker lines. My next post will include the next steps in drawing your dog.
When photographing your pet for a future drawing, try to make sure you are being objective. You love your pet, so any photograph is going to be great, cute, cheeky, funny, brilliant – from your point of view, but maybe not from an artist’s point of view. Getting down onto your pet’s level for a shot is always a good idea too, not too much looking down, unless of course up or down is the desired perspective you would like to achieve in a drawing. Remember, when you are down on your pet’s level, you are more likely to get a better perspective of your pet, and a more relaxed pet.
It may be a good idea to distract your pet, perhaps having them look at somebody else out of the picture, so that they are not looking directly at the camera and you can get a good profile or character shot. If you want them to look at the camera, try to make them look interested by getting somebody to attract their attention at a spot behind you. Hopefully they won’t run at the camera or the person waving behind you and spoil the whole shot!
Sometimes getting that perfect shot is often hit and miss, and sometimes it’s just a matter of taking a lot of photographs until you get it right or the right one presents itself.
Flash photography for pets is not recommended, especially close ups. The image can look flat with no character and the eyes become very unnatural. It is very difficult for an artist to ‘guess’ at what your pet’s eyes look like if they don’t have a good representation of them in a photograph. If possible opt for natural light and natural looking reflection will become apparent in your pet’s eyes.
I really like working with coloured pencils. It still takes me back to my childhood, when I would plaster my walls with my best ‘works.’ My techniques have changed a bit since then and my skills have improved a little, but I still get the same buzz from a finished work as I did when I was ten.
Coloured pencils are a really great medium to work with. They are relatively inexpensive and come in a big range of colours. You can take your pencils with you anywhere. They can be used wet or dry and with mixed media. You also don’t need to use any additives, special papers or fixatives if you choose not to. No wonder it was my medium of choice at three years of age!
If you really want to understand the pastel medium, it is essential to experiment with the different types of pastels that are available. As I have said before, there are hard and soft pastels, and oil pastels. I tend to use the hard or soft pastels, as I find them easy to work with. Oil pastels are made with a slight amount of inert oil and wax, and tend to adhere firmly to the paper surface, whereas soft pastels do not. Soft pastels tend to be dusted onto the surface and brushed off, and can be blended and shaded easily.
Once again, practice and experimentation. And more practice. I practice constantly to find what I am looking for. I also read a lot of books on art and look up information if I am not sure about something. It doesn’t matter how much experience I think I have, there is always room to learn a lot more.
Pastels are sometimes messy. What am I saying? Pastels are nearly ALWAYS messy, you just learn to live with it. So it’s a good idea to start with good habits and techniques early on so you don’t get yourself into tizz because the chalk is all over the dining room table. Ideally, it would be nice to have a studio, or a separate room where you can set up to cope with the mess. Failing that, I used to set up my gear on a nice sunny screened veranda. It had its benefits.
Set up a surface of convenient height next to your easel. On that surface, in my case a large drawing table, have your improvised palette. Try to keep your colours separate, or at the very least, in the same colour categories. Pastels will quickly become dirty with contact, so it is also a good idea to have a container full of dry rice – handy for putting your pastels in and shaking to get rid of any residue, not eating.
I like to have a wet rag handy as well to clean my hands. I go through a fair amount of paper towel after a session just to mop up the residue around me. Make sure you have a well ventilated area to work in, dust particles will get into everything, so it might even be worthwhile considering a particle mask. They’re not that expensive and disposable, but if you’d prefer not – then a fan is recomended.
Beginners need to remember that pastels can be used as a drawing AND painting medium. This makes them unique and versatile.
Once again, practice, practice, practice. This is essential to mastering the use of pastels and the basics of drawing.
You can also incorporate other mediums as tools besides pastels. You can use toothpicks, wads of paper wrapped around toothpicks (I find clean paper towel very useful for blending on its own) charcoal and knives to break up the already applied layers of pastels and add interesting patterns.
There are different types of paper to use with pastels. I prefer the finer textured paper for a softer, more detailed portrait, although I use rougher textures for a larger, more layered work.
Initially, there are three types of pastels you need to be aware of. Soft and hard pastels are the most common, pastel pencils are similar to hard pastels, and oil pastels – which have the same pigments but are bound in waxes and oils.
Using pastels as a medium can be rewarding for the beginner artist, as they are so versatile. Pastels can be used for both drawing and painting and are blended on the paper rather than a palette. There is no prerequisite for the budding pastel artist, and experimentation is necessary for results, although the basics of drawing should be practiced as often as you can. Some delightful results can be achieved from merely experimenting with soft pastels and coloured paper. Hard pastels are ideal for detailed lines and fine work. Enrolling in a local art class or an online tutorial could go a long way in building confidence and style.