spqrblues: (Antikythera hands)
I have at least 30 (possibly more) different types of watercolour sampler papers that I'd like to test, so I'm going to try to do a little piece of art each day--maybe during lunch breaks, so I can make sure I do them quickly, not worrying about the drawing details. Or worrying about, you know, anatomy and stuff.

Also of course I'm going to try to keep the comic chugging along.

Today's "spend no more than an hour on it this time" test of the paper samples stars St. Cuthbert's Mill Milford 140lb cotton cold press ("not") paper.

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Light pencil erases easily; paints lift well; the paper warps when wet but dries flat; and I discovered I need to learn PATIENCE before layering on this type of paper--it doesn't dry immediately, but stays workable for a while, so I found myself accidentally scrubbing off the underlayer of paint.

I was also being my usual timid self, and the colours looked a bit washed out. I think more (patient) layering would give a much more vivid result, judging by how bright the more pigment-dense paints along the side look when thumped on the paper in masstone (in "full strength," so to speak).
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
Once I got started drawing--after a lot of warmups--finishing the pencils and inking went quickly. The dialogue started fighting back and being stubborn, though.

I accidentally left a speaker ambiguous a couple of comics ago, by having an off-panel not-yet-seen speaker. This time I thought I'd try doing it deliberately.

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spqrblues: (arch scribe)
Posted on Twitter today: I played with a sampler of QoR watercolours today (instead of getting the next comic done--but it was something I could do while thinking through the next complicated(!) steps in the plot).

QoR paints are made with a synthetic substitute for gum arabic, a binder traditionally used in watercolours and mostly sourced from one type of acacia tree in Sudan. I've heard that the synthetic binder is used in art preservation, but that disqualifies QoR paints from joining my ancient palette, even as a substitute for something poisonous :) The paints needed some finessing to work nicely on the sketchbook paper. They wouldn't be my first choice of paints, but some artists like them. I'll keep playing with them until my tiny sampler runs out.

These are photos, not scans, so the colours and proportions are slightly different in each Iusta image.

(click 'em to see larger)

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Still warming up

Sunday, 11 June 2017 03:04 pm
spqrblues: (arch scribe)
Today's warmup features antique & new dip pens; J. Herbin's archival black ink Encre Authentique (said to have been used by all the classiest ye olde French notaries); a variety of Rohrer & Klingner inks (the two iron-gall inks are not waterproof, the overenthusiastic burnt sienna is); and Copic markers, which I admit is a very weird combination of materials.

I grumped about the black ink not working with one of the nibs, but eventually got it going. The Copics sopped right through Stillman & Birn Alpha paper, but they blended reasonably nicely.

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spqrblues: (Antikythera hands)
Warmup sketch with two reds--kermes (bugs) on the left, cinnabar hue (substitute for genuine mercury vermilion) on the right.

I'm always worried I'll overshoot the mark and ruin a painting by overworking it, but I'm planning to do a second layer (glaze) on the cinnabar red and on the skin tones when this is fully dry.

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spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
I kept falling asleep all day, or this would have posted before midnight Eastern time.

I'm not sure I'm awake right now, either. This is a common condition for me.

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spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
A little scene. Painted with the ancient pigments--some ochres, malachite, indigo, a touch of cinnabar, a tiny bit of lapis lazuli, and some smushed-up bugs.

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spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
This here is a comic and all that:

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Sometimes you burn the finest grapevine shoots for your black paint, sometimes you just grub around in the oven.

New Bits

Thursday, 25 May 2017 09:35 am
spqrblues: Ave Sweetums Rose (Default)
The next comic is inked & lettered (it needs scanning & cleaning) but "what I want to do" has to wait behind "what I have to do" for a little while. Hopefully just a day. Maybe less than that!
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Iusta colour)
I found the missing art boards (I'd left them at the art space where I work once a week, because I'm just that aware of my surroundings) and finished up the inking and scanning today.

I have a big project to complete tonight and tomorrow, so I'll aim for a Sunday comic next, but probably not a Saturday one :)

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