PERFECTLY IMPERFECT-I may not be the best at what I do, but Nobody has MORE fun trying than I do! :)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Sumi Ink, a Rooster, and a Crow

I've been playing with my Sumi ink again. Just experimenting and having fun...being fearless with my materials. It's taken me years and years to learn that I can't improve and grow unless I take risks and use my art supplies and techniques without being afraid of wasting or ruining my materials. Art is a lot more fun for me now than it was when I was all tensed up and afraid of ruining whatever project I was working on. They don't always turn out well, but I learn from them and move on to the next thing.

For instance the "Crow" in the tree, above, started out in my Moleskine art journal as a sumi ink sketch of a tree trunk with a crow sitting on a branch. I drew in some smaller limbs with my zig marker, which I don't like, but can't erase. I decided it needed some leaves, so I dipped the brush in ink and kind of threw it onto the paper (and everything else around :)), letting the puddles smush into one another. Throwing paint/ink releases tension, you know. :) It was looking kind of blah, so I threw in some cerulean blue watercolor for a sky effect and altercation. The picture on the left is the way it is in the journal. I know, the bird blends in with the foliage too much. I may or may not try to change this. The picture on the right is lightened digitally to show the crow better. I don't particularly like the page, but I had fun and I learned from it, so the time or effort wasn't wasted at all. :)

"The Rooster" - You may have to enlarge the picture by clicking on it to see him amidst the chaos. Hint: He's black in a white spot...

The quarter sheet of watercolor with very little texture started out with a light cerulean blue watercolor wash, so light that it all but disappeared when I added the inks. I let it soak in a little, then poured black sumi ink onto the paper, tilting it in different directions, spraying water onto it and letting it run, and dabbing it with a paper towel. I let that set a few minutes, then dripped some more black ink all over, and tilted the paper for the drips to run together. It cried out for some red, so I dripped red sumi ink around and stood the paper on edge on a paper towel and let the inks fuse and run where they would and left it to dry. When I picked it up to see what else to do to it, the little crowing rooster jumped right out at me. The rooster shape was all there. I added red dots under the beak and on his head, plus a little streak in his tail feathers. I just love him! ;)

This painting could also be called "The Rooster's Nightmare," since, according to one's imagination, there are numerous other shapes and faces among the drips and runs. When I paint it's more realistic usually, but I love learning new things and doing different things just to keep myself inspired and motivated. I kind of like this painting just the way it is, so I'm stopping here.

So these are two of my ink experiments from the last couple of days. Now I'm playing with collage and oil pastels, back in my art journal. Hope you're having fun with your art! :)

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