Splashing about with ink…

As I draw digitally most of the time, I like to break out and make a bit of a mess every now and then.  Last week I got inky, tried out some new water soluble pastels, and mixed in some water colour and pencil to make some original art work badges…

Mixing up media that you may not think will work together is fun. Grab some paper, don’t worry about the outcome. Just go for it!

For these images I used: acrylic inks; water based inks; water soluble pastels, water colour, pencil, a dip pen, a brush pen,  and water colour pencils.

My badges are for sale here.

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Animals in Jumpers…Free Colouring Sheet to Download

This week I’ve been drawing animals in jumpers…

…using pen, coloured pencil and watercolour pencil.  I thought they would make fun brooches..

 

I’m going to use the images for prints and cards and a few other things. The brooches are available on my Etsy shop, BearsGetCrafty.  Also, as they I enjoyed colouring them in so much, I thought I’d share the fun… Click here to download the colouring sheet.

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The one I forgot to post on Christmas Eve…

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This is my “Merry Christmas!” post turned into a “Hope you had a Merry Christmas” post.

When I drew this illustration I was busy wondering what the story behind it was. Then I was lucky enough to have it included in the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators advent calendar.  (Click on the link to view all the other wonderful illustrations in the calendar.)  As well as a splendid Christmas picture everyday from a different SCWBI illustrator, writers were able to create a micro story to go with each image  (You can read these on the #W&PAdvent hastag on Twitter.)   …and so… I got a few stories to to go with my drawing. 🙂

Thanks to Pippa Wilson, Jake Hayes, Janey Robinson and KM Lockwood.

https://twitter.com/hellopipski/status/677843230373883905

I’m growing rather fond of these animals…I also drew them decorating their tree:

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I wonder what they will get up to next?

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You can find out about the marvellous SCWBI here.

Wishing you all a very happy, peaceful, prosperous and much drier New Year.

Love Jools X

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Fatwans (or further fun with my Rotring pen)

fatwansfinished copy

I have been drawing a lot with my growing collection of Rotring pens lately.  A lot of bears and cats and pug faces.  I thought it would be interesting to try an actual pet portrait.  Fatwans kindly agreed to be my guinea pig. (Obviously Fatwans is neither a pet nor a guinea pig, but a rather beautiful cat with her own Twitter account. Follow her here.)  I’m reasonably pleased with the result.

It looks better in real life, I haven’t quite worked out how to scan pen drawings without the lines dominating.  Tips welcome 🙂

Hardback (with cat).

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Sunday lolling in the conservatory with the cat and a good book.  ‘Astro Poetica’ in hardback.  It’s so nice to hold it’s putting a big smile on my face. The cover is shiny black and silver.  It has a couple of extra poems and illustrations and if you’re quick you’ll get a piece of free art (by me) when you buy it.

You may have noticed that Leo modelled for one of the illustrations.

 

 

Astro Poetica

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This lovely thing landed on my doorstep last week. 🙂  ‘Astro Poetica’, a volume of charming poems about space written by Dom Conlon, with some pictures by me.  It’s full of love and fun and aliens and planets and solar systems..and I managed to sneak my cat in there somewhere too.

As well as being a rather beautiful, nice to hold thing ‘Astro’ is the first time I’ve seen myself in print.  And, by gum, I think I look rather good.  (My work, obviously. Not actual me.)  I’m immodestly pleased with myself.  And with Dom.  I think we did good.  And to think, when Dom asked me to illustrate it I said “Don’t you think you should ask someone who knows what they’re doing?”  I’m pleased he ignored me.

I think children will love this book.  I hope they read the ‘Things to Think’ and ‘Things to Do’ sections and write some poetry of their own.  I have a child on loan at the moment, so I’ll be testing it out later.  I know adults will like it, because I do and I am one.

‘Astro Poetica’ is published by Inkology. If you look here Inkology.co.uk you’ll find lots of free and lovely stories and poems for children. You can follow @InkologyStories on Twitter as well.

You can get a copy of  ‘Astro Poetica’ from Amazon. It is also available on Kindle from Amazon or for your ipad from itunes and there is a rather lovely limited edition hardback version, which has extra content (also on Amazon).

Rotring

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I’ve been busy working on a new illustration project lately (featuring Bears, unsurprisingly) or rather, busy trying to work on a new… ripping stuff up, getting cross, having no ideas and drawing in a very uptight fashion.  If you are familiar with my scribblings you will know that my style is generally quite loose.. messy even.  I use a dip pen and ink and water and pencils and crayons and paint and brushes and fingers…  I’ve also got to the point where I think everything I draw or paint looks like crap. (Sorry, I swear and it will probably get worse than that.)

I had a bit of a moan to a very dear friend about how useless I am this morning. Sorry. You know who you are. x  And decided to put the whole thing on hold for a bit and refresh my brain with completely different things, ie not art.  Having a general clear up of my studio* (*corner of the conservatory) I found an old Rotring pen. 0.2 nib. I’ve had it for years, (slight guilt here) it was given to me by a good friend when her Dad died, as she thought I would use it.  0.2 nib. That’s very fine. And fiddly. I’ve used fibre tip type pens that are very fine and not liked them.  I like the variety of strokes that different pressure makes with pencils and nib pens. And wash. And rubbing things with my fingers. And flicking paint and ink about. Anyhow, I thought it’s not really my sort of thing but I’ll see if it works and maybe give it to a friend…

So I drew this (work in progress).  In spite of being really hung up about drawing anything it sort of worked.  I think it’s to do with being relaxed because you’re not expecting anything.  Whatever, the concentration kicked in. I think I’ll keep the pen. And play about with it for a bit.

Bears can wait. But I’ll be back to them soon.

If you want to look at the drawing more closely click on the photo for a larger view.

P.S.  If you want to see an expert with a fine nib at work you should follow @ArtMinxDesigns on Twitter. 🙂