Category: pencils

I’ve Seen You Before

I've Seen You Before

I’ve Seen You Before

This is a painting that I did in Corel Painter.  I promise I won’t bitch about Painter or tech support at Corel.  Actually, in Painter 2018, things are going very smoothly.  Painter released in this version some stability to the application that seems very nice.  They also released for their trick to get you to buy it and/or upgrade a thing called thick paint.  They claim this looks like real paint.  Well hold it, Corel, what have we been using all these years?  Has our paint not looked like real paint all along?

Anyway, maybe this looks more like real paint.  I’m just not sure.  But boy is this stuff thick.  It is like painting with gloop.  I initially stuck my nose up at it and said no way am I painting with this stuff.  Not only because it was gloop but because it has its own separate layer.  It has a separate layer that does not act like a real layer.  So it is isolated.  It will not do many of the things a layer should do.  Plus the brush engine for the thick paint has a lot of controls to figure out.

In the past, Corel rolls out its latest trick brushes and then the next year it acts like it never heard of these brushes.  You are left holding the bag as to these brushes.  Well, why should I learn the complex brush engine of these brushes if Corel is just going to move on to some other trick brushes next year?

Eventually, when I took Skip Allen’s Introduction class, I came to love the brushes Skip made and I used some of these brushes.  But, I’m holding off judgment on them.  I’m not embracing them yet because I’m concerned Corel will not develop them further in the future.  For example see the Dynamic Speckle Brushes that were developed a couple of years ago.  They have great potential. But still need some tweaking.  Hello, Corel, are you ever going to tweak those brushes?  No.  The program is full to the brim of brushes that need a tweak here and a tweak there.

Anyway, I bitched about Corel Painter.  I guess it’s the best thing out there, but they sure can make a person angry with their shortcomings.

This painting I did with my thick paint brushes that I was in the process of making before I knew Corel was going to come out with thick paint brushes.  I started working with the impasto brushes to see how thick I could make them and have them look like real paint.

In the impasto control panel you can pick the depth method.  It is right below the Draw To box.  The Draw To box is where you pick Color and Depth for impasto.  I swear I have never noticed the Depth Method box before.  Probably because the print is so small and there are so many options in Painter.  There is always something new to discover.

Anyway, I started using Paper for Depth Method and it opened a whole new world in Impasto.  Wow!!!  I have a huge collection of papers that give me lots of different depths.  But even if you don’t, just using Painter’s default papers give you a huge variety of textures.  This is especially true if you adjust the contrast and brightness to the paper.  I take the contrast up and bring the brightness down usually.  I believe that Painter reads the dark areas of paper.  Or else it reads the white areas.  But, I’m pretty sure it reads the dark areas.  But experiment for yourself if you need to actually know.  The other adjustments you can make to the paper are the paper scale which can be very important.  Then there is an adjustment for rotation which can play an important part.  Then new to Painter on the grain setting is the Random Grain Rotation setting and the Random Grain Position setting.  I really like the first one.  It makes your strokes on a piece of paper look very real.  Without this setting, you are just repeating a digital pattern.

Be sure to have Grain Expression set to pressure.  Then, and this one I consider essential, be certain that you have set the Brush Calibration for the individual brush.  I think it is essential to do this.  There are many that believe that global brush calibration is ok.  That just is not true, in my opinion.  Set Brush Calibration for every brush.  It makes a huge difference.

I painted this picture with some of my new impasto brushes.  While I was doing that I started goofing around with Liquid Inks.  I then remembered that if you went into the layer settings for Liquid Ink, it would cause the Liquid Ink to become thick and raise up and become 3D.  Wow!!!  Awesome!

OK, Painter really is an awesome app!!!!  It does some awesome things.

So then, I decided, I would have to add some of the thick paint that I wasn’t liking so much.  So grudgingly I put some on here and there with the fabulous brushes that Skip made (see my earlier blog for information on the Intro Class to 2018).  All in all, this was a really fun painting to do.

Oh!!!!  I have to tell you, I have fooled around with this painting since 2014!  I have repeatedly tried to paint it with nothing but failure!  But I got it out this time, now in 2017, and it just came together.  So, never give up on a painting, no matter what.

If you are interested in my brushes and want them, drop me an email.

Kerry

 

 

I’m Back!

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I think my decision to not post every single painting I do has freed me to blog.

I am painting way faster than I used to.  Plus, I’m also doing photography.  To post every painting and every photograph is unrealistic.  In addition, not all of them are worthy of viewing.  I know, it’s sad but true.  My husband puts it this way.

Look at baseball players.  If they hit .400 they are considered amazing.  But very few of them have ever had a .400 career.  Then look at most pitchers.  They can’t usually hit at all.  Of course, they pitch.

I have to admit, not all my paintings are home runs.  I’m not even hitting .400.  But I’m doing better than I used to.  Practice. That’s what makes the difference. And classes.

Also being in touch with other artists is very important. Then I find out that what I experience is not unique.  The older I get, the more I find that what I experience is most likely experienced by other human beings.

Just this last weekend, I was watching a video done by digital artists Aaron Rutton (http://aaronrutton.com) and Skip Allen (http://skipallenpaints.com).  The screen was split in two.  On one side, Skip was painting some beautiful watercolor flowers.  Aaron was hosting Skip and was just kind of doodling and not trying very hard. Frankly, he was making a mess.

Then Aaron checked on the size of his audience.  He saw they had 95 viewers.  He decided he should up his game.  He drew this fabulous portrait.  That’s what happens to me if I don’t try hard enough.  I draw a mess.

Then, Skip showed some flowers he had done in preparing for the video they were doing.  He was unhappy with his results in the video.  He thought they were too tight.  He showed his first flowers and how loose they were and how as he went forward they kept getting tighter.  They looked pretty good to me.  But I completely related to what he was saying.  The more I work at my art, the tighter it gets.

Until I saw that video, I thought I was the only person cursed with this problem.  But, no, yet again, I find I’m just like other people.  If I don’t pay attention to my art when I’m doing it, I get a mess. If I’m not careful, it gets too tight very fast.

That, finally, brings me to the above painting.  I did this on my new iPad Pro. I love painting on it. I am using the painting app Procreate which is totally awesome.  It comes with a ton of brushes in all kinds of media.  It works extremely well with the Apple Pencil. I’m fact, this last weekend, they had an update to make it even more compatible with the Apple Pencil.

This morning I was working on this painting, and I had this crisis.  I really wanted to do more to it.  But I knew if I did it would get tight and be ruined.  I find I always am doing that to my paintings.  Too tight.  So, even though this feels unfinished, I’m calling it finished.  It was really hard to sign it and put it up.  Every fiber in my body wants to do more to this.  But I’m not going to.  Just this once.  Then I’ll see what happens next painting.

Zany Daze

Zany Daze

Zany Daze

This is a painting that I wasn’t going to post.  I’m not 100% happy with it.  However, I posted it on Instagram, and it did very well, and even got featured.  So I figured it must have some redeeming value.

It bothers me because it seems to just wander around and not go anywhere.  The parts don’t make sense.

I’d be interested in what you think.  You can probably see why I named it Zany Daze.

I started this painting in Rebelle with watercolors and inks and then moved it into Painter to finish it.  I am finding that in some areas, Rebelle is lacking.  Not in many ways, but in just a few.  It is easier to finish these paintings in Painter.

Rainy Day Dreams

Raiiny Day Dreams

Rainy Day Dreams

I have to say that I am feeling so much better.  Better than I have felt in 20 years or so.  Lyme disease, which I have in addition to fibromyalgia, has more than just one germ that needs to be eradicated.  Finally, my lyme physician has put me on yet another antibiotic that treats one of these germs.

I have had an amazing reaction to it.  While I was in Maui in October and November, I was able to walk one and one-half miles.  This may not sound like much to anyone.  But for me, it has been amazing.  I haven’t been able to walk much more than about two blocks or so at a time.  Yes, I have walked longer at times, but then came home exhausted and would have to rest for many days, sometimes, weeks.

But in Maui, I did this and was able to keep going back for more.

Inside of me there has been this heaviness, that pulls me down.  It has been there for over 20 years.  That is finally going away.  This is very exciting for me.

My creativity also seems to be increasing.  That is really exciting.

As to this painting.  I started it in Rebelle with watercolors.  I just poured on watercolors in various bright shades and made them very thick and let them pour down.

Then, I took the painting into Painter.  I used some of Painter’s new brushes called Dynamic Speckle brushes. I used them to further refine the shapes that I found.  Then I took pencils and did some outlining of shapes.  This was a very fun painting to do.

I gave it this name, because I started it on a very dark dreary day, and I was dreaming of bright colors that hopefully will come after the first of the year.

 

Going Round In Circles

Going Round In Circles

Going Round In Circles

I started this painting in an app called Rebelle.  I used watercolors and inks and created lots of drips.  Then I painted with a watercolor brush loaded with lots of paints and drew in various shapes.

Then, I took it into Painter 2016 and used pencils and acrylic paints to finish the piece.

I like using pencils in lots of different colors in my paintings.  It seems like a great way to spread color around in a painting.

I like this particular painting because it has a lot of very bright colors.  I painted it while we were in Maui recently.  I think all the beautiful tropical colors there influenced me.

Oh No You Don’t

Oh No You Don't

Oh No You Don’t

This painting is one I did a couple of months ago.  Somehow it didn’t get posted yet.

It is done with oil brushes and liquid inks and some pencils were added.  I did this piece in Painter 2015.

It was a very hard piece to bring to a conclusion.  I really liked parts of it, but there were areas, as it developed, that drove me nuts.  When I did this, I was focusing, as usual on lights and darks.  Values and good contrast are big parts of a good painting.

In Painter, it is possible to add a layer to the piece I’m working on, then I fill the layer with black and choose the composite method colorize.  When that layer is open, it turns the painting into grey scale.  It is then easy to see whether the painting has enough values going on.

I ended up turning this picture on its side several times before deciding that it would go this way.  That is something I learned in my first painting class from Flora Bowley.

It really comes in handy when working on an abstract.

I have had a very hard time this year with my health.  I have had a lot of break-through pain.  Something that hasn’t happened in over a year.  That, along with GOK (God Only Knows) has caused me to have to spend more time in bed and paint less this year.  I get very despondent on days when I feel sick.  It feels like I’ve stepped backwards and will never go forward again.

I think this is all part of the healing process from lyme disease.  A good friend and I have discussed this years’ setbacks.  I’ve concluded, with her help, that just maybe the bad days seem a lot worse because the good days are so much better.  I certainly hope so.

I try to continue to stay positive no matter what my health is doing.  I am just very grateful to be able to do art again.

 

Looking Forward

Looking Forward

Looking Forward

Looking Forward is what I like to do.  One can choose to look at the past, whine over previous mistakes, regret what was or look forward and see what can be.  I found that life is way too short for regrets of what was.  I realized that it is human to make mistakes.  It is the human condition.  So, no use fretting over them.

I recently did this painting with a group I belong to on Facebook.

We do intuitive paintings by using prompts that people in the group suggest.  For instance, this painting started out by one woman suggesting that we cover our canvas in a fun color or two and make sweeping marks and stay loose.  Then the next person chimed in to do the same, using contrasting colors.  I suggested we cover the 1/3 of our canvas with geometric shapes.  Then someone suggested adding tissue paper or some other media to give the painting texture.

I am the only digital painter in the group.  I particularly enjoy this group, because it challenges me.  When they suggest something that I can’t necessarily do the same way they are going to do it, I get to use my imagination and do it digitally.  So, I just imported a blue piece of tissue paper into my painting.

For those of you using Painter, you can bring things like this into Painter on a layer of its own by going to File/Place.

However, pieces of tissue paper hanging out on the page did not look cool.

So, having recently taken a dynamite brush class at the DAA (Digital Art Academy), I simply made a brush that would respond to texture.

I have a huge collection of textures to paint on.  One way I can use these textures in Painter is through the paper panel.  Over the years I have collected various paper textures from pond scum (really good one) to asphalt.  I chose a couple of these and with a darker blue, added some texture to the blue/violet areas of the piece.

In the beginning of this piece, I chose to use liquid inks and dribble red, oranges and yellows over the page to give myself something else besides just paint strokes to start with.

I also used pencils to add some interest to the piece.  I am finding that using a very dark or very light-colored pencil in my work will add pop to the piece.

If you’re interested in joining our Paint Prompt Facebook group, please drop me a line and let me know.  We’re always looking for new members.

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