Sunday, January 29, 2012

Pen and Ink Art

So here's some older work, but some favorites.  I first heard of "stippling" when I was in high school.  Stippling is where you take a fine point pen and use dots for shading.  The first piece I ever did was the dragon from the movie "Dragonheart".  The assignment was to do a large scale project in pen and ink stippling and the theme was an animal.  I wasn't ever interested in animals as subjects for my art and wasn't overly happy about this theme.  I was into dragons at the time, so I asked my teacher if I could do a dragon, and she said as long as it was realistic and not too cartoon-ish.  She suggested the one from Dragonheart, so that's what I did. 

 For a first stippling project, I think it came out pretty well.  As a school assignment however, I  managed a C grade, only because I didn't finish it in time.  I had the face done, the most important part, but the neck part wasn't finished so my teacher had to give me a crappy grade because it was "incomplete".  I don't blame her and I know she didn't want to give me such a low grade, but it wasn't done.  It was almost the last project of the year so I had plenty of time to finish it over that summer and, as you can tell, I did.
When I was in college, I took an illustration class and pen and ink came up again. I did another project that used stippling and some other pen and ink techniques as well. This assignment was was to take something "organic" or natural and pair it with something man made.  I wanted to use dragons again, so I did this:
I'm sorry I don't have a better picture of this, I took this photo while it was in it's frame, trying to avoid reflections from the glass.  I don't have it with me now to take it out and get a better photo, unfortunately.  For this, I found the picture of the castle in a book of mine and the dragon is from a pair of candlesticks.  That dragon is wrapped around a candle stick so I just made him wrap himself around a tower instead. The dragon is all stippling but the castle is a mix of techniques, from hatching to just plain scribbling. I had a lot of fun with this one. 
After this semester was over, I decided I wanted to do more stippling projects over the summer and I decided to do some of the Titanic.  I've always been fascinated with the history of Titanic and had done some projects with it in the past.  Now I wanted to do something big and do it in stippling.  I actually had a series in mind of Titanic in stippling, from a picture of it being built, a picture of it sailing, a picture of it sinking and a picture of it as it looks today, rusting away under the sea.  I only managed that last one, because it took me the entire summer and I was a little burnt out afterwards! But I'm very happy with it:
 I forget the exact size of this, but it's cut down slightly from a 16x20" sheet of paper.  I used a 005 Micron pen for the ship (ridiculously fine point) and for the black background, a 01 Micron (only slightly less ridiculously fine point)The background was very tedious, because it's just plain black.  The ship itself was a lot of fun to do.  I've wanted to enter this into contests, but I'm always worried about copyrights.  I did this from a picture from National Geographic, so it's not original. But again, no one can get an original photo of the Titanic, because of where it is.  I don't know if I could sell prints of it, either.  
Well I hope you enjoyed my pen and ink work.  More work to come soon!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

First post of the new year...

Happy New Year, everyone!  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas or Hanukkah and New Years!  I got some new art supplies for Christmas and some I already had...I had asked for a new ruling pen (a small device you can dip into something like gum arabic or watercolor resist and you can adjust the pen to create the width of the line you want, super thin or very thick).  I had bought one when I was living in Arizona for my lithography printmaking class and I thought I had brought it back home to NJ with meI tore apart my art supply stash (which is all over my room) and I couldn't find it, even though I knew I'd have never gotten rid of it. So, reluctantly I bought a new one (the people at the art store didn't even know what I was talking about and we searched for a while before we finally found them).  A few days later, I was cleaning my room and what did I stumble upon but my old ruling pen in an art box stashed in my closet with monoprint paint in it.  Luckily, I still had the receipt and I plan to return it tomorrow after work and I think I want to get some more liquid acrylics.  I  think I have one of everything in the art supply world, but seriously can you ever have enough art supplies?? I don't think so. ;-) 
 I have so many plans for new projects this year and I can't wait to get started on them.  I want to try some new things, like acrylic seascapes and some architectural watercolor paintings from photos I took on trips to Turkey and Italy.  These plans will have to wait a few weeks until I get back to Poland and have the free time.  Until then, I'm working 40 hour weeks at the bridal salon and next weekend I'm actually going to a bridal fashion show in Philly.  Should be interesting! 
What I can do while I'm home is doodle and sketch in my (miniscule amount of) free time and if you haven't heard about the free workshops Strathmore is offering, you should check it out.  There are 3 workshops, on in Jan, March and May.  A new lesson every week for a month of fun techniques for mixed media art. If you're interested, check out Strathmore Online Workshops. (I am in no way affiliated with Strathmore, I just enjoyed the workshops last year and looking forward to them this year).  Happy 2012!