Photo of a black ink bottle, a variety of pens, and some practice drawing drills with the words Ink and Rambling

Ink and Rambling

I’ve been practicing art off and on the last several months, but I’m (clearly) having trouble figuring out how I want to share about learning art here on my blog.

The main issue being there is a part of me that would just love to go “ta-da!”, wherein (having reached some sort of great level of skill) I only post from a place of competence and confidence. Confidence which I obviously do not currently possess T_T.

How do I want to write about learning to draw and paint better without revealing that I often feel like I have no idea what I’m doing? I guess the answer is “I don’t” and it’s time to really mean it when I say I want my blog to reveal the mess and “lost in the woods” feeling of learning art.

I have great skill at confusedly rambling and making a mess, so at least there’s that. ^_^v

There has been plenty I guess I could have blogged about since my last post in… *cough* April *cough* …a while.

I had my very first table at a (small) comic convention/artists’ alley just last month. It was only for one day. I *barely* had enough prints to sell. Only one print was a fan art piece – the tea party one below – but it seemed to go over really well :3. I also had some cute teacup stickers I made to sell.

Artists' alley table from August 2018

The yellow table cloth was done no favors by the ugly yellow plastic tables and unflattering lighting (Photoshop doing what it can to spare us in the photo above…). Next time I want to have a black table cloth or maybe dark purple. As it was meant to be a learning experience, I kept a whole ‘next time do this’ list in a little notebook at my table, ha.

The biggest lesson being “REMEMBER YOUR WATERBOTTLE OMG” – I left it in the car and was alone and sooooo thirsty (the vending window being so close yet so far, as you can see in the pic), until some friends came to visit and gave me some water T_T. From like 9am – 11am I wasn’t brave enough to leave my table unattended.

Later in the day, I stopped being so worried about (occasionally) abandoning my table to quickly take a bathroom break or get around to look at other artists. Being gone 5 minutes here and there wasn’t so terrible, as long as I took my purse/money with me. ;p Plus the people at the table behind me were very nice, willing to keep a bit of a watch on my stuff while I was gone. I was very quick about it, at least.

Digital painting of kawaii anime characters fan art

The tea party was so fun to make ^_^. I painted it while listening to the first couple episodes from Critical Role’s second campaign, so I think I’ll always associate it with that, lol.

Preparing having a table was a learning experience for sure – printing business cards through Moo, getting art prints made at White House Custom Color, buying the black wire shelving…stuff… off Amazon so that I could set up my table. And a lot of little odds and ends. I want so badly to have a nice table next summer in Chicago at Wizard World Comic Con, but we shall see. It feels like I have a long way until I have more prints I’d be satisfied with selling. *sigh*

I also bought a Xyron sticker machine off Amazon, but honestly I want to upgrade to getting the stickers printed on sticker paper with an inkjet printer. The Xyron worked well enough, but it was a lot of work to get them printed at WHCC and then run them through the machine and then cut them out.

four cute teacup stickers

I have so many more sticker ideas and print ideas but I feel just…unsatisfied with my art skill level. Like there is so much I want to learn. I recently checked out a bunch of books from the library on drawing with ink and that’s what I’ve been concentrating on lately. Though, yes, I still have my list of the items I’d wanted to work on after my two painting critiques from the spring, but it just…hasn’t worked out. Procrastination is such a gift! >_>***

Lately what I’ve been practicing: drawing drills with ballpoint pens, value studies in pen, hatching/cross hatching, form studies, the 250 cylinder challenge from Draw A Box, and some steel nib dip pen drills. That last one is from one of the library books: Rendering in Pen and Ink, by Arthur L. Guptill. I’m also reading The Art of Ballpoint. And then I have four other books due back in a few weeks that I won’t even mention, because I don’t know if I’m going to get around to reading them, lalalalala, I am trying to be in less denial about what can actually be accomplished in a week.

My Instagram has some of the recent practice work/drills.

I wish I had more time to draw tonight, but I feel headache-y and sick – I was on the road about three hours today (like…2-5pm?) after visiting my parents in my hometown this weekend. Usually I don’t get car sick when I’m the one driving, but today that wasn’t the case. 🙁 Traffic and construction season were as awful as to I expected; I gave up and took back country roads about 2/3 of the way home.

That’s about all the rambling I have in me tonight; perhaps I’ll do a few hand studies in ballpoint pen or something while I want the Critical Role Song of the Lorelei one-shot before bed…

Anyhow – all I wanted to accomplish tonight was to break my blog-silence and start rambling about art. The messier the merrier, I suppose.

And having done that *throws confetti everywhere and peaces out.*

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