June 14, 2019 § Leave a comment
Take your paints out for a drive. See what they can do. ~ xo Pierr
June 7, 2019 § Leave a comment
A fun activity – draw a friend sitting across from you without looking at your paper or taking your pen off the page. Trace them with your eyes in one continuous line.
The look is very Picasso. What I like the best is the boldness of the line, its deliberateness. No apologies or hesitation. Pure guts.
Here’s lookin’ at you, R! Draw on!!Colors made with black and red Tombow brush pens, fluorescent pink marker, and 8- watercolor paint box.
Spark your week! xo – Pierr
May 24, 2019 § 2 Comments
It’s thrilling to sketch outside. Pack light to stand, sit, or walk. My nifty fanny pack holds everything I need. But I forgot about wind – bring a rubber band or clip to hold the pages down. Wear a hat, sunscreen, and jacket around your waist…I left mine in the car. Brr!There’s a Murphy’s Law about sketching people who are sitting still in places like airports, outdoor cafes: the moment you begin to draw them they get up and leave. So I figured the church across the river was a good subject to get warmed up with. I began with a “Finito!” waterproof fine-tip pen by Pentel. A friend swears by them. I’d never tried one. Wonderful flow to the ink and a generous width. Berol Prismacolor pencils made the color, and shading I used a 40% cool gray Berol Prismacolor Art Marker. Got this far and a group of market vendors put up a huge tent in the foreground, covering my view of the towers! Must be a Murphy’s Law for buildings, too.After the tent went up I moved where I had a nice view of the back of a flower vendor’s booth. He was moving, yes, but generally up and down in a very small space.
Wednesday I’m going back for more. Have a wonderful week outside! ~ xo Pierr
March 9, 2019 § 7 Comments
I finally snail-mailed my annual Lunar New Year card!I sketch an idea on any old scrap paper then start refining it using pencil on tracing paper. When I have a drawing I like I ink over it using a narrow Micron pen. The reason I use tracing paper is you can see through it, and at some point I might want to change the composition by flipping the image… Easy as pie! Don’t even have to redraw it.Here are the pens used for this project. Berol Prismacolor art markers have a wide chisel tip and a narrow tip in one marker. Great for quick strokes of color. The Pigma Graphic, by Sakura, is permanent ink, too. It comes in many different widths. I used it for the Squiggle girl’s hair and facial features.If the final paper is too thick to see the drawing through it to trace via a light table, or up against a window, I use graphite paper instead to transfer the image. First the paper, then the graphite paper – graphite side down – then the drawing on top of that, and ‘trace’ over the lines with a hard sharp pencil (2 H or 4 H):Next I paint over the graphite lines in single brush strokes of gouache (goo-wash, an opaque watercolor), changing the color a bit every stroke or so for fun. My two favorite brands of gouache are Winsor & Newton (England) and Royal Talens (Holland). I have favorite brushes too. Of course the primo brush is Winsor & Newton “Series 7” sable. But they’re very expensive and gouache is particularly hard on fine haired brushes, wearing down their tips pretty quickly. Recently I discovered the “Umbria” series by Princeton Art & Brush Co, made especially for gouache, and gave it a whirl. It’s a new fav! Finally I add my signature “chop” – which says the sound of my first name in two ancient Chinese pictograms side by side – ‘P’ + ‘eer’, carved for me years ago by a Beijing artist, “A National Treasure,” visiting Seattle. My Year of the Monkey post, 2016 – click HERE – gives a different step-by-step of the process. All my New Year cards feature this imaginative “Squiggle Girl,” from the picture book, The Squiggle, by Carole Lexa Schaefer and illustrated by moi – Pierr !Here’s to a creative year! ~ xo Pierr
March 1, 2019 § 16 Comments
Since the 1st century philosophers puzzling cause and effect have wondered – which came first, the chicken or the egg? Recently, in our 21st century, physicists have shown that in parallel universes of quantum physics, the chicken AND the egg can both come first.
The art I share today is my whimsical glimpse into one such universe and what could be going on there at this very moment.I used gouache (goo-wash) and ink in a resist technique. Thinking backwards, I paint pattern first to stain the paper……then general colors over the pattern, leaving the paper blank where I want a black line.The scene fills in this way with more details and general color over them. I tape the piece to the bottom of an enamelware pan (waterproof) with Artist Tape (blue painter’s tape works as well)……then cover the foreground and borders with black waterproof ink (Higgins “Black Magic” is my fav).Then I let water from the kitchen faucet run over it. Water beating on the piece dissolves the paint which pushes the ink off itself, leaving a stain of color – and ink – where the paper was blank or where gouache wasn’t painted thick enough to resist the ink. This allows for surprise and that ‘happy accident’ which I love. The painting is usually a potato chip after this step, so I blow dry it flat again, then remove the tape.Final touch-ups are easy because gouache is opaque and will cover excess ink, or colors I might decide I want to brighten or change.For that Medieval illuminated manuscript look, metallic watercolor from Daniel Smith Art Supply in Seattle works wonders.Tonight – March 1, 2019 – the group show, Chickens: Birds of a Feather, opens at TAP (The Art Project), a gallery on Bainbridge Island, WA. The show is up through March 31.Thanks for attending my first “Freehand Friday.” My plan is to share something of my art process with you each week, to motivate me to keep on creating more and more new drawings and paintings. Ba-BOK! xo ~ Pierr