The Fountain: WIP 1


I only took about a week off before I started working on a new one, yay.  The random number generator indicated that the Fountain would be next, so I spent some time tweaking the design of it.

This all is what I call the “doodly” stage.  I’m mostly working out what I want to include, and where. It’s also a good time to make sure the anatomy isn’t going to be too funky, because I’ve learned the hard way that if the anatomy ends up funky, once you fix it, the people will not fit in where you wanted them to.  : P

I’m a little worried this is too close compositionally to the Stargazer.  I might experiment with flipping it left to right next time I work on it and see if it still holds together.  That would differentiate it somewhat.

And that is wisteria flowering in the trees, and yes I know damn well what I’m getting myself into, but I can’t help it.  I always do this to myself.  : /


The Visionary


The Visionary is the part of us that creates grand designs and tries to execute them– that wants to change the world and believes that it can be done. Unlike the Stargazer, the Visionary’s plans come from within; but both frequently result in lifelong quests and obsessions. Out of all the aspects, the Visionary is the most likely to create something which will stand the test of time; but in exchange it is also an engine of perpetual dissatisfaction with the way things are.

Waugh, this one was epic.  It edged out the Empress for most hours of work time (30 exactly).  As suspected, the colors were challenging but not hair-pulling-out frustrating like they were for the Gate and others.  I had a pretty good idea of the unifying scheme, what with all the metals on a background of blue.  The planets were honestly the hardest part, and I had to redo them a few times to find a variety of colors that would pop and draw attention without being garishly disharmonious with everything else.

Visionary: line art preview


I missed cleaning up a couple of places and there are still a few tweaks I want to do, but this is where the Visionary is at right now.  The line art is basically done and I am going to start in on the color next.

I did not ultimately have to scrap as many things as I feared, but I definitely had to pitch/redo more things than I was hoping.  This is actually somewhat simplified (gods help me) from the height of its convoluted-ness.  But I think I finally have it in a state where it is not just a jumbled complicated mess, but you can still see plenty of intricacies.  The Visionary’s machine should be intricate after all, in ways that only make sense to its engineer.

Grace: Balance


The center holds.

Strathmore mixed media paper, 5.5″x8.5″.  Micron/Copic multiliners and Pentel pocket brush pen.

Ah, I am so happy with how this turned out so far (I will be coloring it at some point; I haven’t decided yet how.)  This is the first of a triptych, and there will probably be more eventually.  I have more thoughts but they are inchoate.  See also the pencil drawing for this below, if you are interested in such things.


Deepest Forest–WIP 3


Haha, and I have even managed to install my scanner drivers properly on my new laptop, so you can see the colors better than on my crappy phone camera!

Let’s see, what have I learned since the last time I posted.  I’m getting a little better with my water-brush.  I’m finding that it works much better to only squeeze it when the brush tip is very nearly dry, at least if you are doing detail work.  Otherwise water comes out in a big blobby and sits there on the paper.  I also experimented (not on this piece) with using it in conjunction with watercolor pencils and found a very interesting technique.  You can rub the tip of the water brush against the head of the pencil, and pick up quite a strong amount of pigment without saturating the brush head.  Of course, this only works if you are okay using the pure color from whatever pencils you have on hand.

Also, permanent rose does not set up.  It was over a week after I painted the amaranths hanging off the bridge and just touching them with water made the color spread immediately.  It was unintended but I think it will be okay, and now I know to do anything with permanent rose last.

Deepest Forest–WIP2


The second day’s work on this piece.  As you can see, the warm colors are coming in.

I suppose it would be useful to describe the palette I chose for this.  The RYB colors are Alizarin Crimson, Cadmium Yellow, and Cerulean Blue (Winsor & Newton).  I’m also using Payne’s Grey and a bit of Permanent Rose in places.  Now that I have the basic hues down, I’m going to start developing more depth of color and detail across the painting.

I’m very happy to be working on my new laptop; Photoshop loads in less than 5 seconds on it and it’s spectacular.  Having my art computer be able to talk to the internet is going to be extremely nice.

Deepest Forest–WIP 1


Here’s the first round of work on this piece.  I’m quite happy with the way the paper is staying flat after stretching it, though I need to refine the process.  This is also not indicative of the overall palette of the piece; the upper right half is going to have a lot of warm colors and yellows in it.  Then I’ll pull some earth tones into the upper part of the tree/bridge that will hopefully help unify it.  The tree trunk is also going to get more solid and dark as I add more layering to it.

I started in on that upper portion today and I’m worried it’s not quite meshing yet, but we’ll see.  I’ll take a picture of it when I get the sun back tomorrow.  : P