Today was a tired day, even though the sky was blue and bright. Can’t explain it. It is just how it is some days.
..Typical houses around here…shops down below and the living is done upstairs, with volets(shutters), not my favorite thing to paint!
..done with rotring art pen in contour quick lines, while waiting for my lunch of duck and salad to show up. Added a light wash over some of the lines, and there you have it. a sketch..
I am a lazy person. There you have it. My biggest secret revealed. If I don’t have deadlines and projects and goals, I fall in a slumber of doing less and less and less until I start enjoying doing less. In summer that can happen very easily with the holidays and lazy summer days, lingering by the pool…. So I decided to do some regular August sketching and get back to those sketches I haven’t done for months, years even. No summer laziness for me then, but pens and inks and aquarelle en all these new sketchbooks I’ve ordered and papers waiting to be turned into sketchbooks.
I use the rotring art pen quite a bit, and the ink allows me to add a little water(not too much) to bleed the lines. See the little sketch of the ink bottle below which was done with a rotring artpen.
I also love drawing with inks and especially J. Herbin and Sennelier inks. They are good inks, easy to find and much cheaper than ordering inks from other countries, just for the sake of having inks.
…See, the pens are waiting!…pen and J .Herbin ink, “Café des isles”
My palettes are organized and ready in waiting, mostly comprised of Sennelier and Winsor & Newton watercolor in tubes and pans. The palettes still need more cleaning, but you will never see perfectly clean around my art table..it confuses me completely and I can’t work…too afraid I’ll make mess!
Color chart of all the colors in my palettes. Sometimes I get confused and start using one color thinking it is another, especially if they are close in hue, so it is good to arrange and make sure the right colors are in their right places.
I use about 40 – 45 colors in the larger palette. .which stays at home. Not that I use all the colors every time of course. My tiny travel kit, which I have been using for years now, take about 16 colors which is just perfect.
Colors for my smaller palette…still deciding between some blues and yellows, but I’ll get there. I feel like change sometimes..
In a later post I will cover my use of color and palettes, the inks I love, the pens, pencils…all very simple. I am by far not so prolific and efficient as the urban sketchers or other daily sketchers out there. But more later in the month…this is just to get me started for the month of August.
So until tomorrow…sleep well!
Since we moved a two years or so ago, I got stuck quite a few times in the winter’s mud and snow and slid into ditches and depended on farmers and their trusting tractors. Given that I hate a telephone and rarely have one on me, it takes forever to get out of my predicaments. So we said goodbye to our trusted old friend last year (Goodbye to an old friend )and mon cheri got me new four wheels. I am since then a happy country woman! I already got out of ditches, I wheelie in the snow with flair, and I make small change of our slippery winter road uphill…all without the help of Mr Farmer and his tractor!
Mon cheri of course thinks it is his four wheels! Oh well, I kindly allow him to think so…after all, he is mon chéri!
Eggs. Easy to draw. Difficult to paint. but satisfying, because one can play around a lot with painting eggs..or the suggestion of eggs. Sometimes it works. Sometimes not.
..three eggs 1..
in watercolour and pen on Fabriano watercolour block, HP, 23×30,5cm
..three eggs 2..
in watercolour and pen onArches watercolour block,CP, 18x26cm
..three eggs 3..
in watercolour and pen on Fabriano watercolour block, HP, 23×30,5cm
My week in Provence ended far too soon and it went by far too quick. I managed to do a few, not nearly as much as I planned, because typically Ronell, I forgot half of my art stuff at home. I left my very important oil canvases, boards and large watercolor pads by the door to pack them last and that’s where they still were while I as in Provence. Finding an art store proved to be harder than imagined and so I ended up borrowing two canvas papers from Katherine…can one borrow a paper/canvas…?
To start off with: all of the following are sketches done around Les Couguieux, where we stayed.
…the blue shutters of les couguieux…
watercolor and pen on watercolor paper
…hameau des couguieux…
pen and wash on watercolor paper
…the terrace at les couguieux…
pen and wash on watercolor paper
…still life with cups and lemon…
pen and wash on watercolor paper
To follow: landscapes in watercolor and gouache
I stuck my nose out in the cold today…just outside the atelier and sketched the Jack Frost plant, whitered from the frost and the dry iris sculptures and a tree and shrub, struggling to hold onto some last colour.
…à la prochaine…
Grab onto 2010…
…with a smile…
…and life live to the fullest!…
Every year I paint these clementines from la Corse. See last year’s sketches at CLementines.
…clementines from Corsica…
The next two sketches were done a while ago. I just sketched some things around me – a container in the living room with brushes and pens and stuff and part of a bookshelf. I try very hard to keep the bookshelf, neat, but I am starting to think we will never have neat bookshelves.
..brushes and pens…
Sketches done in Moleskine with rotring artist pen and water wash.
On Myfrenckitchen, I have posted some photo’s of a vendange in Vouvray that we did in Octobre. Good freinds have a bio vineyard where the harvesting is still done by hand. On one Saturday during the harvest period in October, all their family and friends get together for a day of grape harvesting. It was hard work, but a fun day, with a delicious lunch, many laughs and jokes and a messy grape fight towards the end of the day. I only took photos, because I didn’t want to hide from the work behind my sketchbook! you can see some photo’s here at Pears in red wine and a wine harvest.
Safely back home from Hawai’i, with unforgettable memories, tons of photos(for memories, paintings and snazzy shooting!) a heatlhy tan, fit as a fiddle, tired and dizzy with jet lag and hungry for french coffee!
Since Hartman spent his time with convention meetings, I had all the time in the world to selfishly do my own thing. I walked a lot, picked up things on my way and sketched them in our “room with a view”, when alone in the evenings. I carried my camera and sketchpad with me during the day, hiked long stretches up and down the coast and stopped every now and then to indulge in sketching some part of nature or the many art statues and animals around.
…findings along the way…
We were on Kona, the big island, still very quiet and undeveloped in comparison to the others and to me, up until now a world unknown. Taking about 6 hours to travel around the whole island, you travel through rain forests the one minute passing an empty desert the next, cows grazing fields follows shortly after, just to suddenly make way for dry volcano rock and finally ending in sandy beaches and tropical flora.
I found the trip very inspirational and came back home with some ideas for paintings. I’m not sure whether “island painting” is really me, but I am looking forward to the challenge of putting something different on canvas than what I’ve done up to now. Even if it is just for memory sake, because I don’t think I have the courage to go that way again…the long flight and stops are far too challenging for me!
Some sketches…seed pods and flowers picked up from the ground. Parts of a statue captured here and there. Up until the day we left, the coffee table was covered with findings from every day along with pens and watercolour pads and palettes and a note I left to the cleaning lady…to leave it all as it is. She was so cute – she would take the dirty glass I use for my watercolour and replace it with a clean one every day. She would also leave me a little pile of napkins next to my palette. By the last day, the leaves were dry, the flowers wilted, the napkins all used up and I felt quite emotional to throw it all in the bin. To me it was a story which came to its end. I’m always sad when a story ends, even when the end sails happily off into the sunset.
All sketches were done in the aquarelle moleskine with rotring pen and watercolour.
We had the most beautiful view from our room with the sunset straight in front of us over the ocean. The doors to the balcony stayed open all the time we were there. We fell asleep with the sound of crashing waves in our ears and we woke up with the smell of the ocean whifting in through the open doors early morning. I could live a life like this – the tempo slow and almost heavy with laid back pace, stressless, nonchalant, with hips swaying and flowers bouncing in tied back hair.
…from early morning…
See some more photos here at Myfrenchkitchen: Travel.
To be continued…
I love inkwork and there are some beautiful inks around not to mention the artists that do beautiful inkwork.
I took my summer shoes to do some excercises with the inks and pens I have. Excercise 1: Summer sandals done in Gris nuage ink from J. Herbin, drawing the lines with a stylo à plume d’oie(quill pen) and afterwards I bled the lines and washed with some powerful blue Eclat de sapphire ink and a small brush. I just can’t help myself. I have to do a wash somewhere with a brush. It is an addiction. I would so love to do only beautiful lines and leave it. Maybe next time.
Excercise 2: A second pair of summer sandals, this time using a speedball pen and Cafe des iles from J. Herbin. Once again just dragged a wet brush over the lines to get a wash, and finished off with some black india ink hatches.
Excercise3: A pair of Sperry’s…and could I explain the difference in size? Maybe I have one big foot and one small foot…? Or could it simply be bad observation? Done in a reed pen and plume pen with Sanguine 270, from Sennelier. And after dragging a wet brush over the lines to bleed the colour, I decided to add some washes of Lie de the of J. Herbin. Finished off with some scribblings with a rotring pen, 2,5 .
Excercise 4: Since I had now used up all my summer shoes, I had only my shoe blocks left. Linework in rotring artist pen and washed with a wet brush to bleed the lines. Then decided to splash in some colour with Sennelier’s Sanguine 270 and Lie de the, J. Herbin.
In the past, I have done a lot of calligraphy work, so I have many speedball pens and nibs that work wonderful for drawing. Added to that, are some reed pens(which I don’t like much), plumes/goose quill pen, which I love to work with, rotring artist pen(Fine), and rotring rapidograph pen, size 2.5.
I enjoy the inks of J. Herbin. They are rich, make for nice washes as well as lines and dry with a nice sheen. I have only recently started working with the J. Herbin inks and they are really beautiful! Wonderful for linework as well as doing bleeding with a wet brush and they are lightfast, can be sealed beautifully…in short, I have nothing bad to say about them! I haven’t yet found a nice dark burgundy red, but Sennelier’s Sanguine 270 is a nice dark red which comes close to what I’m looking for. All the sketches were done in a spiral watercolour pad, 18x26cm (7″x10″) Fabriano Artistico CP. Below you can see part of my “ink workstation”.
We are back from a wonderful time in Toulouse. Beautiful sunshine days and we were spoilt rotten by Marinell. It is so bad being back here and having no one to continue the spoiling!
In between all the coffees and lunches and soulful talks and laughter and movies and dinners and lots of walking and even rock concert by Maroon Five, I sqeezed in some drawings. I did the drawings on site and put the washes in when we took a break somewhere. Toulouse was swarming with people out on the streets, which made drawing extremely difficult. I didn’t even attempt painting.
Toulouse is known as La ville Rose (pink city), because of the amazing red brick used in its architecture. It is overwhelming and I felt totally incompetent, trying to capture some of it atmosphere.
The first three sketches were done in handmade sketchbook (22 x 25cm) in pen and pencil and watercolour.
…la ville rose…
…let in the sun…
The next sketch of Pont neuf, crossing La Garonne, was done in handmade sketchbook, 22x15cm in rotring artist pen and wash.
..a wonky pont neuf…
A few people sketches on Place de la Daurade and the ducks closing in to investigate. Rotring artpen and wash in handmade sketchbook, 22x15cm.
…so, who are the curious ones…
A while ago I came across a beautiful little handmade sketchbook, (30×12, which seems more like a marine sketch format) and this café scene was done in it with rotring art pen and wash. Unfortunately the paper doesn’t take wash well, so I’ll stick to pen drawings in the future.
…”une baguette, du vin, et du fromage si’l vous plait”…
It has been raining ALL day, and I’m not exaggerating when I say non-stop!
♪…I’m si..ingin in the rain, just si..ingin in the rain… ♪♪…
The ironing is always behind.
I have to iron. I have to see sharp folds and straight flat edges on shirts and linen and skirts and yes, T-shirts. Except of course jeans. No straight folds there. That makes them look nerdy. I learnt that from my daughters.
Sketches done with rotring artist pen and water wash in moleskine.
Like with a desperate diet, I start off every Monday with the determination to iron immediately when something comes off the line. Just to see my diligence fade into submission by Wednesday. The result is a growing mountain of washing and a leaking cup of courage. So I let the mountain run its course… after all, it is already there….and wait for the magical day when my cupeth runneth over again.
I’ll probably always have this habit that needs fixing.