Monday, July 30, 2012

Fun with a mailorder catalogue - part one - quick sketches

As I have mentioned a couple times already in the past posts my artsy friend Monk was visiting the island recently and when you have an artsy friend over you can't help but be inspired. We talked art, we sketched together, we did the sketchcrawl together, we visited local museums and checked out each others latest art.

And...she showed me some samples of the online classes she's taking. Specifically she was taking classes by Jane Davenport called 'Supplies me' and 'I heart drawing'. Now I don't know if you know Jane, but she draws a lot of girls and women, some whimsical, some more fashionable and some more realistic. All equally amazing. 

I immediately wanted to take those classes too, especially 'I heart drawing' but my budget is a little tight right now and they are not cheap, so I will have to put that off to a later time. However, the idea of drawing girls/women, especially fashion like figures did not let me go.

I have always drawn girls. My school notebooks were filled with them ever since I was little and I guess watching samples of the class my friend took rekindled that old flame.

Shortly after she left I was still so full of inspiration that one very late night instead of going to bed I got out the tombow marker she gave me, a cheap notebook and...a mail order catalogue that was still lying on my table. And I thought...why not? Why not draw some mail order catalogue girls?

And there I went drawing some really quick sketches. They are not good, but that was so not the point of them anyway, they were a way to vent out my enthousiasm, just so I could get some sleep without bursting at the seams from all those ideas running around in my head.

Doing these six sketches can't have taken more than 15 or 20 minutes, and it was so much fun! And it started a week of mail order catalogue art that I will be sharing with you this week. This was part one in a series of three. Hope you enjoyed it.

Wishing you all a very artsy and happy week!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Photogenic Island

Just some snapshots of this photogenic place I call home. All taken in the past week.

No words needed really...

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy weekend!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

What are you up to Wednesday - part 48 (woyww 164)

Well, summer has finally found the Netherlands and I've never been so pleased to live on an island where there is a lot of wind, otherwise I'd go insane from the heat. Unfortunately there's not much wind in my studio and it does lie directly under a slanted roof that has the sun on it all day, so you can imagine it's warm in there right now. This may explain why my desk looks like this:

Not much going on there! I worked at this table last Monday night and since then have shied away from it. I cleaned up the desk right after a little project in my Studio Book (which lies at the bottom of this stack and I'll show you later) and that was that.

The book on top of the stack is one that Lynette mentioned on her blog a few months ago and it turns out to be a real treasure trove for flower lovers. It's full of drawn images of flowers, leafs, trees and pods and seeds. I was blown away by it and the best part is that you may copy from it freely. There's also a cd included if you want to go digital with them. All in all not a bad addition to my collection.

Downstairs is still where the journaling goes on and right now I'm halfway through this spread:

Can you see the hole in the tablecloth in front of the journal? That's the handy work of my lovely assistant! Yes, he does try to do his part around the house. ;-)

On top of the boxes you can see the one red tombow brushmarker that I got from my friend Monk. It doesn't fit inside! Still waiting for my stash of them to arrive, but that will be a few weeks waiting yet. I'm not impatient, oh no, I just want to have it all right now!

Not working in the studio does not mean nothing gets done, by the way. Last night I sat in front of my tv, fulfilling my geeky need for the supernatural by watching SyFy, and played with coloured pencils in my Out of the Studio Book. 

Coloured pencils are like a mystery to me that I really want to unravel. I have actually ordered some books on them so I may get to the bottom of them sometime in the future. You can do amazing things with them, I just don't know how to do them yet, haha.

So I just drew and colored the above bit of 'nonsense'. I always call my abstract doodly stuff  nonsense, but I mean it in a good way and I had fun doing the above page. It took several hours to finish. There's a lot of layering going on there, but I can also tell I have a lot to learn.

And that's how things are with me this Wednesday. Now hop on over to Julia's and check out other people's blogs to see what they're up to!

Wishing you all a wonderful artsy Wednesday!

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Bronckhorst Journal it is, all finished and put together. The journal from my vacation to Bronckhorst (which is the township/region my sister lives in) aptly called the Bronckhorst Journal.  It's just a bunch of indexcards bound together with bookrings. I decorated the cards with collage, photographs, lots of writing and even a little painting. I'll just let the pictures do the talking. By the way, this is just a selection of the spreads. The journal has about 80 pages in total (that's counting both sides). Enjoy!

If you look closely you will see this journal is called Bronckhorst Journal #2. That's because I did another Bronckhorst Journal out of indexcards several years ago, but that was BB (Before Blog), so I never showed it to you here. You can see a picture of it on my flickr if you're curious though.

And that's how easy it is to make a journal. Get bunch of cards, punch holes in them and bind them with bookrings. Satisfaction guaranteed. ;-)

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy week.

Friday, July 20, 2012

A private sketchcrawl

Last Saturday was another international sketchcrawl day. I have participated in two now officially, in the city of Gouda, and did a bit of drawing on the last one by myself, because I couldn't attend.

One of the organizers of the previous sketchcrawls was actually visiting me last Saturday and so she didn't attend any this time either. Of course I'm talking about my partner in artsy crime Monk (I may have mentioned her here before, haha). So since we were both here on the island we decided to do some sketching together and we had a great day of it.

Because the weather report predicted dismal weather we decided to go indoors and visit the two local museums. Come Saturday the weather was pretty good, but we went ahead with our plans anyway and alternated between museums and sunny terraces with good food and drink. It was one of those perfect days to hang out together, talk artsy stuff and be artsy ourselves and just have a jolly good time. I did five pages in a watercolor sketchbook and that's what I'll be showing you today.

I'm starting with a really bad scan of a drawing I did of a pattern that was in one of the historical rooms of the local Tromp's Huys. It's a bad scan, because the color shows up in a totally different way and the page seems to have all these white patches.

The original is a blue gray and way more solid color. I've tried tweaking it in photoshop, but it just won't go the way I want it to, so you'll just have to take my word for it that the original is better. ;-) Anyway, the pattern was on the wallpaper all over all four walls of this room and seemed to be hand stenciled! I was in awe of the patient person who had performed this act and I felt I needed to honor him/her with this little drawing. Also I just thought the pattern was really cool.;-)

It seems I really felt like copying other people's art that day, instead of drawing objects or views. So that's what I did. This was a portrait that was hanging in the same room as the aboved pattern was found. It's a really bad copy. In fact it's so bad, you can't even tell it's a copy!

I know, it looks like a pretty decent sketch of a woman, quickly done, but okay. But what if I told you this was not a woman at all, but a little girl? Ha! Not so great then, eh? I'm still not sure where I went wrong, except that the face is not wide enough. Maybe I should study children's pictures and learn their features better.This sketch reminded me of how important really looking is when it comes to sketching.

The next two were also copies of paintings in the Tromp's Huys. This home once was the residence of the Norwegian artist Betzy Akersloot-Berg. There's pictures of Betzy sitting in a huge crate wearing protective clothing during a storm just paint paint painting away on the beach. Obviously a more dedicated artist than I ever will be!

I loved the above and below painting. Again mine are poor renditions of the originals, but at least you can see where I got the image from, haha. The blue of the water in the picture above was just breathtaking. While at the museum I mostly sketched, but while sitting outside in the sun I colored these two in. The above with watercolor. I really like how it turned out.

The one below was another beauty in the museum by Betzy.

I'm doing her no justice by showing these, but I need to show you what I did no matter how mediocre it is.
I colored this one in with inktense pencils and regular coloring pencils. The inktense were wetted with water and then I went over them with regular pencils. I do like this one too. Good copy or no, it's still a pretty picture.

One of the cool parts of having a real life artsy pal is to exchange ideas, books and materials. This time Monk brought her new tombow brushmarkers. Of course I had to try them, so I did  a little nonsense sketch. 

I love the brushtip! They make sketching very pleasurable. When Monk told me they were watersoluble I had to test that too of course as you can see in the above picture. In short: it was love at first sight! And now I have ordered some for myself. Monk, being the generous gal that she is, actually gave me a red one she had double, so until my shipment arrives I can still play with at least one tombow marker! (And I have, but that's for another post.) I look forward to the rest though, but they will not be arriving until august. Oh well...

And that's all I have to offer you from that day. It was fabulous! You can see what Monk did on her blog and there's pictures there of me coloring and my well used watercolor box too! (I know, it takes a special kind of person to drool over well used watercolor boxes.) ;-)

Hope you had a fabulous week too and that you are going to have a wonderful and artsy weekend!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

What are you up to Wednesday - part 47 (woyww 163)

It has been two months since I did a what are you up to post. But this week I'm actually up to stuff again so I thought I might share my desk with you. In fact I'll share it with you twice, since this is a planned post and I took the pictures on Tuesday-evening and things changed during the night.

When I started my studio session things looked like this:

It's the making of my Bronckhorst Journal, you know, the index card journal I mostly made during my vacation. I worked on the covers and I had to perforate the pages to allow for bookrings to bind them. I finished the journal now and I will probably show it to you some time next week.

Because I still had some time left I figured I might as well work on something else to keep the creative juices flowing. Luckily I had a half prepared page in my Studio Book and I decided to do some collage:

The spread is not completely finished here yet. I added some more elements by stamping flowers on pretty paper and cutting them out. I will show you the finished spread in the future when I do another sketchbook post. What's cool about the spread is that it's full of random things that have nothing to do with each other and yet match really well together. There's leftovers from the Bronckhorst Journal, stickers, tape, labels and info that went with unrelated purchases like notebooks and jeans and of course I'm showing off my new tape. ;-)

I want to end this post with another proof of the generosity that exists in the creative blogosphere. Look what came in the mail!

These pieces of fabric art are a calling card and a bookmark that were made by the wonderful Annie Wade, better known by her followers as Bohemiannie! She is absolutely gifted when it comes to fibers and fabric and you really should check out her blog and her flickr to see what amazing stuff she makes. Thank you  Annie!

And that's all for today. Go check out other desks at Julia's and have yourself a wonderful and artsy Wednesday!

Monday, July 16, 2012

From the Moon Journal

I must admit that I have not been very artsy in the past few weeks, except for taking many photographs and maybe one or two drawings in the sketchbook. As much as I enjoyed my vacation rythm of mostly being outdoors shooting pictures and going on hikes or being indoors reading, it did take away from my studio time and now, even after over two weeks I still find it hard to get back into that rythm of sitting in my studio on a regular basis. It's not that I have not done anything, it just hasn't been a steady thing yet. There's no routine.  So this week I'm decided to more or less force myself into art making, not really so much against my will, as against my laisser faire attitude of late. ;-) Time to get some work done!

Anyway, on and off I have worked in the journal and here's five spreads to prove it.

Four are regular journal spreads with my day to day scribbles about my day to day life. The first one is a little photographic impression of my vacation. As you may remember I did journaling and art on index cards on my vacation and I am turning that into a journal. I have already printed the photographs and pasted them on yet more indexcards and I put all the cards in the order I want them to be. Now I just have to decorate the covers and put the thing together with bookrings. Hopefully that will be done this week and then I can show you the finished index card journal.

For now I hope you enjoyed looking at more from the Moon Journal. It's progressing slowly, but it is progressing and it's already becoming quite heavy and full even though I still have more than one third of the journal to go. It's a good thing I took out about half the pages of the original atlas, because it now already is more bulky than it was to begin with.

Thanks for dropping by and I wish you all a wonderful artsy week!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Some pictures of the past week

I wanted to show some journal spreads today, but I didn't feel like editing pictures. I'm a little under the weather right now. You know that feeling where you might get sick or it might just pass. Some coughing, some sore throat, this tired feeling in your body. Nothing major, but not exactly right either. We'll see how it turns out.

Anyway, I decided to make it a quicky blogpost with some photographs I took this week. Nothing wrong with pretty pictures, right?  And you'll get the journal spreads later, I promise.

Went on an extra long walk.

Watched my town get smaller the farther I went.

Flowers were blooming in the fields.

Flowers were blooming in the dunes.

Put up my feet on a rainy afternoon. My assistant joined me.

Went on a trip with my coworkers.

Got some new shoes, all equally comfortable. Fashion be damned!

Went to the city of Harlingen for a meeting.

Watched my assistant being cute. A. Lot.

This weekend will be an artsy one, as I'll be spending tomorrow drawing with a visiting friend checking out the local museums. It's an interenational sketchcrawl day and this is how we will honor it.  Looking forward to it too. Just hope I don't really get sick. Keep your fingers crossed for me and have yourself a wonderful weekend!

PS: A special welcome to all the folks who came here through Jennibellie's blog. Hope you enjoy it here!