Thursday, August 29, 2013

Still pattern crazy

I keep enjoying drawing and colouring in patterns in my Moleskine sketchbook. Here are my latest.

All these were drawn with a drawing pen with brush tip and then coloured in with Pitt Big Brush markers. I so love doing these. There's something very satisfying about them. It does take some time to fill a page, but it slows down the mind, which is good for an impatient person like myself.

Hope you like looking at them as much as I liked making them. I'm sure more of these will follow, 'cause I"m nowhere near tired of them. ;-)

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy day!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Photography Friday

Time for another Photography Friday, which means another peek for you all through the lens of my camera phone.

I actually completely cleaned my old W&N watercolour tin! Look how shiny!

What my journaling table looks like when I'm working in the White Book. Chaos!

My friend Monk came to visit the island for a nice vacation. We spent a day on the west side where I don't come often enough. It's so beautiful there. 

These are the Koon's Polders. We sat on that bench for quite a while.

This place is like a paradise for all kinds of birds.

Monk taking a picture of me taking a picture of her.

It was a cloudy but perfect day for walking. The clouds themselves were gorgeous.

This is on the other side of the dyke surrounding Kroon's Polders. The so called Posthuyswad.

You can walk all around Kroons Polders and get vistas like this.

After that we went to Bomenland (Tree Land literally), the heather is in bloom now, so lovely!

The shape of this tree is amazing. I also think it has been affected by a dune fire in the past.

Another look at the Posthuyswad.

The next two pictures were taken by Monk of me. Since I don't often show pictures of myself I thought I'd include them. As you can see I'm not the only one in love with camera apps! ;-)

This is a bird watching shed, but of course I was too busy looking into the camera! ;-)

This is the picture Monk made of me, while I made the above picture of her.

A good time was had that day and as always I have vowed to go more west more often. I wonder if I'll finally keep my word on that. Ahem...

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy weekend!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Composition Book

You may remember that at the beginning of this year I showed you all a big stack of journals that I have in my studio and that I wanted to start using this year. Slowly but steadily most of them are being used right now and today I'd like to introduce you to one that's been fascinating me for the last few weeks. I call it the Composition Book.

Now I know that for a lot of you a composition book is this big lined hardcover notebook, but what I mean by it is simply 'a book of compositions', so it has nothing to do with what you might expect if you are of the english speaking variety. ;-) By the way, this is a ringbound Hahnemuhle A5 sized sketchbook.

See, I just wanted to do very simple collaged compositions with decorative papers in basic shapes. It's a kind of practice to see what works and what doesn't and trying to figure out why that is. When is something in harmony and when is it overdone? By using simple shapes like circles and rectangles I get to play around with different layouts and colours without making it all too complicated. Here are some pages to give you an idea of what I mean.

At first I just took some basic shapes on a background of some gouache. Very straightforward.

I really liked the contrasts and bright colours, but I also felt something was missing, so I started adding some simple pen work in a black drawing pen in my next two compositions. 

In the last one there were also some letter templates used and I wanted to continue on that theme. I also wanted to see how it would look if the colours were less contrasting to each other. So I made these two:

I don't hate those, but I feel I went overboard with them. Too many additions to a simple composition. It's a bit of overkill for me.

So in a next sitting I decided to use the same papers but go for a simpler approach: 

Much more calming indeed. But you know me, I crave colour and contrast, and maybe it was just a little too sedate or something, because in the next few I decided to make the background a bit more lively: 

Ooh, I loved those! But forever challenging myself I wondered if I could do something with more white in the background. One of my major challenges after all is that I can never seem to leave anything untouched by colour, so some more white spaces might be an interesting change. Again the same paper, but 'emptier' backgrounds. 

It's very tempting for me to add more to these last two pages, but I can see that they are okay in their own right. I feel they are calming and balanced.

Those are all I've done so far and I loved playing with them. I think though my next pages in this book might be filled with more contrast  and brighter colours again, because...well....I just can't help myself!

All in all this is just another good practice to get a feel for how to arrange items on a page. Even with such simple shapes the variety could be endless. I'd like to figure out where this will take me. I'll keep you posted!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy Wednesday!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Finishing up the watercolour sketchbook

When I went to London I used an A5 size watercolour sketchbook for my journal. This sketchbook was actually intended to be my ordinary carry along sketchbook (the one I keep in my backpack at all times), but all of a sudden it had this new role to play. I loved working in it in the big city, but after I got back it was not full yet and I like my books to be all filled up.

I've already shown you some sketches and some watercolour nonsense I did in it after I got back. Now I'm pleased to announce the book is all filled up and I want to show you the last pictures of this sketchbook.

Imaginary girl,done in about four colours.

After a mail order catalogue cover.

A leaf I found ages ago.

A house in our towns main street.

Another imaginary girl.

Two feathers I found on one of my walks.

Saw several of these butterflies, had to look them up in my butterfly book to draw them.

Impression of a walk somewhere half way on the island.

Buffy after a dvd package of season 7.

My feet on the terrace of my office garden.

As with the previous pictures in this book some were drawn from life, some from my own images and some from other peoples images. For sketching practice with  me everything is free game! ;-)

The next carry along sketchbook has already been started. As soon as I have some more pages filled in that one I will of course let you in on them.

Hope you enjoyed this peek in my sketchbook and hope you are filling up some of your own. I try to keep in mind that it's more important to have a page filled, even if it's sometimes not to my liking, than to leave it empty, so I just keep working at it. Hope you do the same!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy week.

Friday, August 16, 2013

From the White Book

The White Book continues steadily as I fill it up with my journaling and collages.

In all my artsy endeavours it is the journal that is like the baseline of everything, the one thing that keeps going no matter what. I like that. I also like that over time I have accumulated in books a sort of story of my life. It's like a reflection of me in words and images. It very literally is my life's work.

I always have this sense that if people want to know me they should just look at my journals. Not just a few spreads, but the entire collection. A spread is just a moment in time, like a picture, but all the books together are my movie. ;-)

The pictures on the fourth spread and the girls and doggy on the last spread were gifted to me by the wonderful Jennibellie. And she wondered if I would use them! Ha! ;-)

For those who want to know these things, the White Book is originally a Seawhite of Brighton sketchbook and measures 25x25 cm (10x10 inches). It's getting really thick already and I'm nowhere near finished yet. I think by the time I'm done with it, it will be impossible to close, but for this once I will consider that a good thing!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy weekend, make it a good one!