Episode 44

Hello, dears!

I absolutely LOVE the art we’re going to do today! I think this might be my favorite piece of art I’ve done for Art Lab, or at least one of my favorites! Here’s the stunning art inspiration for today:

I really like this pattern and how it’s growing and evolving while I’m drawing it. #doodle #doodling #drawing #teckning #pattern #mönster…

{via}

HOW NEAT IS THAT? :O After pondering for a while, I came up with the idea of making the design into a constellation-type doodle with a watercolor background. I think the finished result looks gorgeous! Ready to start? Alright!

1. Selecting a canvas depends on your supply of both patience and time. You’ll need both for this project. 😉 If you have a limited supply of the aforementioned, I would suggest making this an ATC. If you’re bored and want to spend a while just making art, use a sketchbook page.

If you like clean white borders as much as I do, put strips of washi tape around the edge of your paper.

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2. Paint a graded wash of watercolor, starting with dark blue at the top and fading into purple and then pink at the bottom.

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3. Using a white gel pen, make a diagonal band of densely clustered dots across the top of the page.

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4. Fill the rest of the page with dots, spreading them further and further apart from each other as you move away from the first band of stars.

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5. Now for the fun (but tedious) part! Connect the dots. You don’t have to connect every dot to every other, but that’s what I did. For maximum impact, you’re going for a bunch of triangles – if an area has more than three sides, you missed a dot. Don’t cross over any lines or it will get too muddled.

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6. Once you near the right bottom corner, take a break and sketch in the outline of a tree on a hill. (I should have done this before I started the stars, but I didn’t. I recommend learning from my mistake. 😉 ) Make an elongated cloud shape on a trunk, and “cut out” a few holes in the leaves and branches for extra realism.

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7. Mark the sketch with a bunch of dots to connect later. Don’t do them too close together, but the fewer dots you use, the more geometric your tree will be.

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8. Connect the rest of the dots.

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9. Now take a black brush pen or Sharpie and color in between the lines. 😉

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10. Ta-daa! Now for the great reveal…

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SOOOO PRETTY!

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I really love how this turned out, and I hope you guys do too! Do you think you’ll make this? If you do, I’d love to see it! Click here to see how to send it in and add it to our Art Lab gallery.

Thanks for reading, dears, and have a lovely day!

***Allison***

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Episode 40

Hello, dears!

Unfortunately I couldn’t make my Art Lab post on Friday, but I have time (and data XD) to do it today! In this post I’ll show you a few tips and tricks on lettering, plus show you plenty of font inspiration to copy or use to think up your own fonts. (Because I usually run out of ideas after, like, three fonts. XD) So. Ready? GO!

Technique: Hand Lettering

Hand lettering is super fun, and also very useful for when you want to spiff up an envelope or gift tag or any number of things.

Fonts

Let’s start with one of my the most common and prettiest fonts in handlettering: fake calligraphy. Lovely name, isn’t it? 😛 That’s because it allows you to get a calligraphy-like effect without using any special calligraphy tools. It’s also super simple to write. See?

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Step One: Write out your desired words in the neatest cursive you can.

Step Two: Find the downstrokes. Downstrokes are the places in a letter where you move your pen down the paper, like the little pink arrows show in the picture.

Step Three: Widen and color in the downstrokes to get the look of a calligraphy pen. Ta-daa! Pretty, isn’t it?

This is a great base font, especially when paired with a simple sans or serif.

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So basically sans doesn’t have the little “tags” on the ends of the letters and serif does. I like writing all caps sans and all lowercase serif. 🙂

And now, here are a bunch more simple fonts I wrote out to look through and use as inspiration or copy yourself. Which is your favorite?

Accents

Now that you got some fonts under your… um, pen XD, it’s fun to add little accents and flourishes to fill in the space beside the lettering. Here are a few ideas to get you started, and you can find a bunch more on Pinterest and the “Doodly Accents” section of PicMonkey. 🙂

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Inspiration

Still need some more ideas to get your creativity flowing? Here are a few of my recent (and not-so-recent) lettering pieces.

You can hand letter with any medium you wish! Here I used my watercolor brush pens which are super fun for lettering.

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Quote from Jane Austen’s Emma

For this one I used a blue notebook marker + a blue ballpoint pen. I love adding vines to letters, but it does take a bit of time and patience. 😉 Another fun thing to do for fonts with thick, solid bars of color like below is to add zigzags or circles or other patterns inside the bars for more interest.

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Quote from Nancy Pearcey’s Total Truth

This is the first page in my second bullet journal. I like how the mix of colored pencil and ballpoint pen looks together. 🙂

Not quite the right season for this, but hey, it’s lettering! XD I think it looks really neat to overlap some letters, like I did with the ‘y’ and the ‘o’. Also a little extra line of a different color beside the downstrokes adds a shadow effect and makes it look more special.

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And lastly, a lovely Bible verse that I copied completely in blue ballpoint pen. (By the way, these Pilot G2 pens are practically THE BEST PENS EVERRR. They write super smoothly and you can get them in a range of point sizes.)

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That’s all I have for today, so hopefully you’re inspired by now. 😀 If you did make some hand lettering inspired by this post, we’d love to see it! Check out how to help us fill our art gallery here.

***Allison**

Episode 38

Hey, guys! Welcome back to another episode of Art Lab. 🙂

Today I want to show you how to draw “spaghetti mountains,” which is what I decided to call this certain doodling technique. 😛 I think it looks so neat in the end, and it’s quite fun and relaxing to draw.

Art Inspiration:

Pointillist Line Drawings of Mountains by Christa Rijneveld

{via}

Isn’t this gorgeous? I love it! I made a similar piece using this as inspiration, and also made you guys a little tutorial if you’d like to try it yourself. 🙂

Materials Needed:

  • Paper, an ATC, canvas, etc.
  • Black pens or markers (I used varying sizes of Micron pens + a black brush pen)
  • A white gel pen (optional)
  • Some time

1. Draw some jagged lines for mountain ridges with your thickest pen (I made the lines thicker later). Make some ridges in the background and foreground.

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2. Take your second thickest pen and start filling the first mountain with “spaghetti.” XD Draw some curvy lines that all start and end at the same point, and follow each other closely. Like so.

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3. Add more spaghetti in a different direction, and connecting to the noodles you already drew.

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4. Keep adding more spaghetti in all different directions until you fill the whole mountain ridge.

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5. Now for the ridge behind it. Use a slightly thinner pen to show perspective, because things (like spaghetti) look smaller when farther away.

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6. Keep it up! After you finish that ridge, move onto the one behind, using a thinner pen each time and making the lines close together. Doesn’t it look so neat thus far?

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7. Add a sun behind the last ridge. I left a white space, but you wouldn’t have to. 😉

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8. Next we’re going to make the “rays” of the sun. Using your thickest pen, fill in the space above the sun with rows of dots or ovals.

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9. Make the dots in each new row bigger than the last…

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10. Ta-daa! You’ve filled the whole page!

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11. You can definitely leave it like that, but I added a bit more embellishment with a white gel pen. First I colored in the sun black, (weird, I’ve never seen a black sun before, have you? XD), and then rimmed it with dainty white dots.

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12. And lastly, I added some white circles to the black dots, just to break things up a bit.

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13. Ta-daa! You’re finished!

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What do you think? I think… strange but neat. 🙂 I hope you get a chance to try this, because it’s quite fun and I love the end result.

If you DO make art inspired by this post, we’d love to see it! Check out this page to see how you can help us fill our gallery.

Thanks for reading, dears, and have fun making art! 🙂

***Allison***

Episode 34

Heyyyyy, guys, and welcome back to Art Lab! Today I’m going to show you three super simple and fun techniques for creating art with watercolors. These ideas are great for art-starters, warm-ups, or even as finished pieces. I used ATCs for my canvas, but you can use whatever paper you like (though watercolor paper works the best, if you have it). Also note that you can use watered-down acrylic paint instead of watercolors if you need too.

Alright, let’s do the easiest (and perhaps most fun) first. 🙂

Technique #1: Magic Islands

I discovered this one by accident and I just LOVE doing it!

1. Lay down some plastic wrap and drop some water in one corner. Dip your wet paintbrush in watercolor and mix it into the water.

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2. Load up your brush with the diluted paint and splatter it onto the plastic wrap.

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3. Lay a paper of some sort on top and smooth it out, then pick it up (obviously 😛 ).

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4. Wait for the paint to dry, then trace around the splotches with pen.

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5. And you’re done!

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I think this technique looks like islands, don’t you? This would be a fun way to make a map:

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Technique #2: Bubble Maze

This technique produces a fun and striking result. The translucence of the watercolor lets you see the colors overlap which makes a really neat effect.

1. Start by painting some dots. Overlap them and attach them to other circles so that the colors bleed into each other.

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2. Continue adding dots of different colors until the page is mostly filled.

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3. Fill in the white areas with black Sharpie or pen. And you’re done!

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Technique #3: Splatter Trees

This is a great way to give the impression of leaves without drawing ever single leaf.

1. Splatter different complementary colors (I used fall colors, but you can use whatever you wish) onto your paper. Try to keep it roughly in a tree shape, but don’t worry if the splatters get a little out of control.

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2. After the foliage is dry, use a slightly damp brush and brown paint to add in some branches and a trunk. Don’t draw all the branches the tree has, just a few poking out for effect. 😉

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3. Add some grass and a few dots of fall color if you’re doing an autumn tree. And you’re done!

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And there you go! Three fun and simple ways to make some watercolor art.

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Which technique was your favorite? If you make art inspired by this post, we’d love to see it! Click here to learn how to help us fill our art gallery!

***Allison***

Episode 31

erase artist's block

WOOHOO Art Lab is back! I’m so excited to show you guys the post for today: 20 simple art prompts to help you erase artist’s block. 😀

Alright. So I’m going to give you the art prompts, explain each one a bit, and show you some of the art I’ve made using the prompts. Quite a few of these work especially well for ATCs, but you can use your sketchbook, a canvas, whatever! Ready?

Go.

  1. Draw a colorful black and white animal. Because art is great for showing things you never see. Paint a colorful panda, zebra, penguin… skunk. Have fun. I made this ATC ages ago…DSCN8577
  2. Draw your favorite music. Put on your playlist and draw what you hear. What color is the song? Blue, yellow, black, pink? Is it a soft, wavy line or an angry spiky one? Draw three or five of your favorite songs stacked on top of each other and frame it.
  3. Paint a pretty background and write a word/quote on top. Super simple, super pretty. I like to use watercolor and black or white gel pen. Look up pretty fonts on Pinterest if you like. art 4
  4. Use a white gel pen to doodle on black paper. This is SO satisfying and fun! I did another (rather short) Art Lab post about it here.
  5. Draw a huge picture of a tiny thing, and vice versa. A crumb, a bug, a part of your fingerprint… fill the whole page and draw in lots of detail. On the other hand, how small can you draw an elephant that still looks like an elephant? I know cats aren’t exactly huge, but I did draw them tiny. art 5
  6. Pick three markers without looking and only use those for a drawing. If you watch art videos on YouTube, you may know this as the Three Marker Challenge. 🙂 Somehow only having limited colors seems to kickstarts your creativity.
  7. Draw a close-up of a tiny detail of something. The stitching on your jeans, your dog’s nose, the center of a flower… I’ll bet a collage of several close-ups would look really neat! Like those mystery pictures in the backs of magazines. It’s also fun to draw several close-up views of one object: your cat’s eye, paw, nose, ear, whiskers, and put them together.
  8. Paint something by not painting. Negative space is fun to play with. I think watercolor is especially neat for this technique. It works well to paint the whole page with water except the silhouette of what you’re drawing, then swirl on some paint. What do you know, another cat.art 3
  9. Draw your dream house and decorate it. Or your dream bedroom, or craft studio, or kitchen. Who knows, this drawing might come in handy when you get a chance to build it!
  10. Close your eyes and scribble. Turn it into a drawing. This is a super fun and simple prompt, which I also made a post about here.
  11. Draw a silhouette with a galaxy behind it. Actually draw the galaxy first, but you know. And guess what? I ALSO made posts about how to draw galaxies! What do you know. There’s one here and one here. Once you’ve made the galaxy, draw a silhouette of a wolf, a person, a tree – the possibilities are endless (maybe)! Or you could draw a galaxy silhouette.art 8
  12. Draw on something unusual. A leaf, a crumpled brown paper bag, yesterday’s newspaper, an old book page, etc.
  13. Use words instead of lines to draw. Draw yourself a story. Instead of drawing lines, write tiny words. Instead of coloring something in, color it in with different colors of words.
  14. Draw a picture of what nothing would look like if it was something. I… don’t even know if this is possible. If you do it, I WANT TO SEE IT!
  15. Draw what smiling and crying feels like. Don’t actually draw someone smiling or crying. Use colors and lines (and objects besides people or facial features) to convey the feeling.
  16. Fill up a page with different versions of the same thing. Draw a hedgehog twenty different ways. Draw ten different cats. Fifteen different trees. It’s fun. CPC 3 (1038x1280)
  17. Draw with a non-art supply. Try using coffee, makeup, dirt, nail polish, smashed berries, food coloring, or whatever else you can find.
  18. Cover a page in lines, circles, or patterns, and watercolor on top. Another super simple but super pretty prompt! Just keep in mind that if you draw with a pen, you’ll need to let the ink dry before watercoloring over it. art 2
  19. Paint yourself without using lines – only colors that describe you. Go for sort of an impressionistic style here I guess. Use blotches of color instead of smooth lines, just for interesting.
  20. Fill a page with watercolor swatches and doodle on top. SO FUN! I got this idea from Pinterest here. And this is mine:

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That was fun! I hope these ideas inspired you, dears. Which one was your favorite? Would you like to see more art prompt posts like this?

If you drew something inspired by these prompts, I’d love to see it! Click here to see how to send in a picture of your art and help us fill our gallery over at the Art Lab blog.

Also, here’s an image especially made for pinning if you want to save this to Pinterest for future reference. 😉

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Thanks for reading, and have fun! 😀

***Allison***