I'm Tammy. 

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    Wednesday
    May142014

    Line Practice: Pangrams

    my doodles altered digitally

    Sentences containing every letter of the alphabet {pangrams} are perfect reference tools for drawing practice! To improve your lettering skills and refine your ability to “see” the details & differences in letters, write sentences with an ultra-fine black marker in a variety of fonts.

    More Pangrams:

    The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.
    Why did Max become eloquent over a zany gift like judhpurs?
    Six of the women quietly gave back prizes to the judge.
    We could jeopardize six of the gunboats by two quick moves.
    I quickly explained that many big jobs involve few hazards.
    My folks proved his expert eloquence was just a big hazard.
    Quickly pack the box with five dozen modern jugs.
    Brown jars prevented the mixture from freezing too quickly.
    The five boxing wizards jump quickly.

    Practice Matters

    The more lines you draw - with intention - the better your lines will be! I promise, practice makes all the difference in the universe. Just keep drawing lines. Not merely squiggles, but lines where you "try" to do something. Maybe parallel lines, perpendicular lines, grids, flowers, invented patterns. There is no magical formula at all! Your hand and arm and mind will gradually learn how to do what you intend to do. You might not be able to "see" your progress for a year or two, but it will happen. Just keep going. Like the energizer bunny. 

    Monday
    May122014

    And then it looked like candy

    “A person's life consists of a collection of events, the last of which could also change the meaning of the whole, not because it counts more than the previous ones but because once they are included in a life, events are arranged in an order that is not chronological but, rather, corresponds to an inner architecture.”
    Italo Calvino

    Clairefontaine watercolor paper, pencil, gouache

    I'm loving this whole gouache escapade. When I drew the ogees in pencil {usually I don't work in pencil} I really didn't like them! They looked dorky. But then I figured I might as well use the good paper, so I started painting. And then I started adding patterns and shapes. And then it looked like candy.

    Friday
    May092014

    Experiments: Two More Inks {Part 5}

     

    Today's experiment involves drawing with two inks using two Speedball nibs. I painted around the doodles with water to soften some of the edges. The sepia ink is J. Herbin Lie de Thé Ink and the light turquoise is J. Herbin Bleu Azur Ink. The Lie de Thé has a gorgeous, earthy rust undertone {I don't know the word used by ink afficionados}. Conclusion: Good fun. I am really digging ink and water. I prefer the Éclat de Saphir better than the Bleu Azur... only because it is darker. The inks are all intensely saturated and smooth as silk.

    Let's review. Skip the following list if you already have a scorecard! experiment #1 + experiment #2 + experiment #3 + experiment #4.

    Here's the first post about this journal, with more pages. This work is in a Moleskine Watercolor A4 Journal.

    Thursday
    May082014

    Art Doodle Love Journal Update

    "Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it;
    boldness has genius, power and magic in it."
    Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

    This page started with a flash of an idea. In my mind, I could see small mini-squares with wavy lines for slow journaling. I thought a little flower would balance elegantly with the compact words so I drew a different sort of flower in each doodly box. 

    Click to read more ...

    Tuesday
    May062014

    How to do the index-card-a-day challenge

     “No need to hurry. No need to sparkle.
    No need to be anybody but oneself.” 
    Virginia Woolf

    Everything you'll need to know is in the ICAD FAQ.

    PS: If you want to get the index-card-a-day blog posts in your feed reader starting June 1st, be sure to get the separate feed. Info about the blog feeds.

    Tuesday
    May062014

    Life Without a Studio!

    “Sometimes things happen in life that you didn’t plan for.
    All you can do is suck it up and start mapping out a new plan.”
    Colleen Hoover

    Dust. That's what drove me to pull every single basket off the art shelves that line a closet-sized nook adjacent to the laundry room and the kitchen. It had been about about 3 years since I thoroughly cleaned out the space and dust was winning. So I pulled the wooden baskets off the shelves so that I could dust. I couldn't get a good shot of the shelves because there isn't much space or light for a photo!

    There's no "studio space" so I'm used to seeing a few baskets at a time. It was wild to see everything at once spread across the dining room floor! {Disclaimer: Well. Not everything! The majority of magazines, papers, japanese papers & ephemera are stored in the guest/sewing room.} And the canvases. And the kids' art materials. And. I'll stop now.

    It took 3 days to sort, re-organize, vaccuum, switch and revamp the baskets; I work in 15-20 minute sessions. That is the reality of having wrists and thumbs that are so easy to strain through over-use. If I injure something, it will set me back a week. And no, my back didn't fare very well. 

    The inks, blank journals and watercolors are back in their respective baskets. All of the journals-in-progress are in one place. The block printing inks and paint pens will be donated to school. The cracked eraser stamps were pitched.

    You've got to develop a system that works for the way YOU work. The stuff used to cut or shape goes together {x-acto knives, circular paper cutter, hole punch, scissors}. The palette knife, sandpaper & mark-making tools are stored with the heavy body acrylics rather than having a separate basket for tools. The book-binding stuff is together. The washi tape, matte medium, a few stamps, a set of alpha stamps and a few ink pads are stored together as an art journaling basket. I'm cool with using just a few favorite stamps - the last thing I want to do is search through a stamp basket for a particular stamp.

    If I had an art studio with twinkly lights I imagine I might organize the materials differently. Maybe I could have materials visible and easy-to-reach rather than sheltered/hiding in baskets. But I'm a realist and my choice is to make the best of the space I have!

    Sunday
    May042014

    Glitter Mandala! High Flow Acrylics in the Rapidograph

     A mandala painted with acrylics using a rapidograph technical pen. Can you imaginate such a thing?

    You can watch the video here, or click over to Vimeo to watch, 2 minutes

    I love my rapidograph pens - a gift from my 20-something self - a set of technical pens that I got just after I finished college, while I was working in the non-creative field of finance. I found the pens a few years ago, after sitting for 20++ years in a closet forgotten. I loaded up the reservoir of my rapidograph with black Golden High Flow acrylics {formerly known as Airbrush Colors}. I tap-tap-tapped to get the paint flowing. The characteristics have been slightly modified but for my purposes they work pretty much the same. Then I drew this mandala on Bristol paper. The paper is bright white and ultra smooth and the paint flows like a dream. And yes it smudges; in the video I drew that little circle off to the right to show you. And then I cleaned my pen *immediatamente* so that the paint didn't dry inside the pen. 

     

    Sunday
    May042014

    The Boundary Between