I’m on a roll!

Released a new traditional art coloring page today, and even got a sketch in too! Just as I had hoped, as a side effect of not playing video games, I am creating more frequently. I’ve started using my watercolor sketchbook more, and I’m hoping to actually get it wet soon.

Working on my mid-year Art Supply No Buy check-in post, so stay tuned! See you soon!

Adventures in Red and Blue

[All photo credit goes to my partner this time around! It was much more frustrating than I expected to take photos of my tiny travel sketchbook. She really made this post possible, I was ready to give up! Thanks, love!]

This is just a small sample of the doodles I’ve made with my red/blue color palette. I would show more, but I need to figure out how to get decent photos!

These red and blue Sakura Pigma Micron PN pens were some of the last supplies I bought before I decided to do an Art Supply No Buy, I bought them right before Birdie was born because I was anxious and I thought it would cheer me up. I didn’t start really using them until this year though!

I had read about limiting one’s color palette and how useful it can be, and I’m really glad I tried it out for myself. The rumors are true, it’s fantastic! I struggle a lot with decision fatigue and this solves that problem. I don’t like working in just black and white all the time, so this gives me that color I crave while still not overwhelming my brain!

Deciding what elements of the drawing to make which color is exciting for me. Since most of the things I draw are not actually blue and red in real life it’s so interesting to see how different it looks when I cut down the colors to just two. I love how I can add emphasis and contrast using this method.

When it comes to doing art on the go I think a very limited palette is the best choice for me and I will continue with this method in the future. I would like to try experimenting with cyan, yellow, and magenta next time! Those are my 3 favorite colors, and they’re a famous trio!

That’s all for now, see you in the next one!

A few pages from the sketchbook I just finished

Again, I’d love to post full tours (or at the very least, more google drive folders!) of all my completed sketchbooks but I just lack the energy to devote to something like that right now.

So in the meantime, here are some highlights from that sketchbook I just completed tonight. That one was definitely more of a messy sketchbook, there were countless terrible doodles, but I thought these pages turned out a little better than the rest.

Hospital Doodles!

I’m happy to report that I was able to get a few doodles in during the hospital stay before our daughter was born!

Birdie was born very healthy via a semi-emergency cesarean. I was induced but failed to progress for 24 hours after my water broke, and then she was having some heart rate dips. Turns out she had the cord triple wrapped around her neck! We are very lucky that things turned out as they did, even though the whole situation was very stressful… Not to mention uncomfortable. My spinal failed so I had to go under for the surgery but luckily I was still able to meet her not long after. C-section recovery is no joke, I have never been in so much pain in my life. Luckily now I am more or less all healed up, though I do have nerve damage on my lower tummy.

She’s almost 2 months old now and doing very well so far. She is getting progressively wigglier as she trains to start walking and crawling! I can’t wait until the day she can grasp a crayon…

I actually came here to write a different post, but I realized I hadn’t updated you all on the baby situation! So here’s that. Stay tuned for another post hopefully quite soon!

Waiting room doodles!

Since I’m nearing the end of my pregnancy, I’ve been having loads of doctor’s appointments. At this point it’s a weekly occurrence, so that means lots of time spent waiting in the waiting room, and then waiting in the office between being triaged and actually seeing the doctor. The best way to pass the time is to whip out my tiny sketcher and just doodle the minutes away!

That vent art I was talking about in my previous post…

I drew this the week after we found out I was carrying our rainbow baby, as you can see I wasn’t feeling very optimistic.
[Glitter markers and black Posca on rough sketchbook paper]

So, I’m pregnant again. I updated my “about” page a while back to reflect this, but unless you’re new here you probably haven’t seen that.

They say it’ll happen when you stop trying. For us that really was the case, I conceived the same month that I completely and utterly gave up. It’s really annoying it worked out that way though because that is the most condescending and insensitive advice you can give to anyone trying to conceive.

Due to how traumatized I am from my first pregnancy ending in miscarriage, I have spent most of this one convinced that something will go terribly wrong. It doesn’t help that I already have a severe anxiety disorder, I worry about everything all the time no matter what!

So far though, everything is going suspiciously smoothly. We have seen our dear “Birdie” (their nickname until they are born) twice now, and both times they were in perfect health for their gestational age. We are now in the 14th week and if everything continues to go as planned they will arrive in October.

Of course, now we’ve been exposed to COVID-19, so I have a legitimate reason to worry about the health of our baby. That hasn’t been fun at all, I had an extreme panic attack the day we found out, and now I’m worried I hurt Birdie from panicking so hard! Hopefully nothing terrible will happen, most pregnant women who get COVID end up fine and have healthy babies. I just can’t forget the stories of loss, those lost mothers and children matter so much to me. I wish this pandemic never happened.

The longer this pregnancy progresses, the more I get my hopes up. It’s impossible for me to regain the naivety I’ve lost though, I’ve read plenty of horror stories about late miscarriages, stillbirth, and neonatal death to know that you’re never truly out of the woods. Life is just crazy like that. If it’s alive, it can die. It’s not fair and we don’t have to like it, but life in general isn’t fair and shit just happens.

Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer but honestly that’s just who I am. Don’t get me wrong though, I’m extremely excited and grateful for this child. I even dedicated an entire blog to writing letters to them. (Although frankly a lot of those are pretty depressing too. I’m not the kind to lie to my kid and try to shelter them, life is hard so I’m gonna be honest about it! I want them to get to know ME… not a projection of who I wish I was.)

You shouldn’t be all that surprised that this isn’t a unicorns and butterflies kind of post though, it did say “vent art” in the title didn’t it? Haha.

Well anyway, thanks for reading, if you read any or all of that. Any well-wishes, prayers, words of sympathy, etc. are very much welcomed and appreciated! It’s gonna be a looong 6 more months.

The first sketchbook I ever completed

My favourite spread in the sketchbook “Mini Sketcher”.
Check out the entire thing on this google drive folder!

On November 27th 2019 I accomplished something a lot of artists my age consider elusive: I finally filled a sketchbook from front to back. I had even went above and beyond, leaving very little white space.
It is important to note though that the sketchbook was TINY (3.5”x5.5”) and it took me 2 YEARS to complete! I started it some time in November 2017, so literally TWO YEARS!
I filled most of it in the last 6 months or so of that timeline though.

That sketchbook saw me through a lot.
There’s a lot of really personal stuff in there, it’s very much a visual journal.
I started the sketchbook as an artist that didn’t take art very seriously, didn’t draw with consistent frequency, and had no idea what I wanted to do. I was also still actively using drugs and alcohol.
By the end I had begun to take art seriously, was drawing nearly every day, learned how to sketch anything and everything from reference, had just begun to draw mandala art, and I was a little over a year into my sobriety.

My advice to anyone that wants to get into art is “just get started and don’t stop.” That’s what I had to do, I couldn’t have come as far as I have without simply getting off my butt and putting pen to paper.

It doesn’t matter how many “horrible” looking things you pump out, each and every one of those gets you closer to what you want to achieve. Without bad art there would be no good art. That’s what every “famous” artist has done and continues to do. Even if you think every single sketch they made is a precious treasure, they didn’t. That much I can promise. #MAKEBADART

There is still a “wrong” way to practice, if you do the same “wrong” things over and over you won’t be learning much. You gotta push yourself and try new things. Experiment. I suggest coupling hard work with studying the work of the artists that inspire you. This is applicable to ALL styles and mediums, even literally splattering paint on a canvas. There’s always room for improvement, never stop growing!
You’ll be amazed when you look back and see how far you’ve come.