Waterfall Sketch – Slowly but Surely

I haven’t posted much for about a month, but I have been steadily drawing this waterfall picture every day I’ve been waiting to pick up my daughter in car line. I’m in the second layer of drawing. I’ll be starting the third layer next. I need to darken the darks and up the detail level.

Here is the reference photo:

Happy Easter weekend, everyone!

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A New Waterfall Drawing & a Tiki Room Sketch

Wow, I can’t believe how long it has been since I have posted. Quick sum up of my life:

  • I got sick with a cold that turned into a sinus infection, and I lost my voice 100% for about a day. (See my last post.) Basically, it was 10 days of antibiotics and prednisone, and I’m still dealing with sinus issues.
  • I’m sick—again. And I’m losing my voice, again. This time, it has settled in my chest, so I guess I’m thankful that it’s not in my sinuses creating more havoc.

I have been doing art, but I haven’t been posting on it. However, I must confess that I haven’t been doing art every day. I’m going to start a challenge in April with watercolor, so that should help get me back in the habit again. Basically, I’ve been drawing in car line, but nowhere else.

Anyway, here is the waterfall picture I’ve been working on. Most of the detail is on the bottom left side. (I’m working up and to the right.)

Here is the reference photo:

Obviously I have a ways to go here.

I also took a little time out and decided to work on this little tiki man from the Dole Whip area near the Tiki Room at Disney World. I’m hoping to finish this in car line tomorrow and then get back to my waterfall:

Here is my reference picture:

Basically, I’ve learned that too many colds in 4 months can knock you off your game. I simply haven’t been healthy except for 3 weeks since October, and the exhaustion is wearing on me.

Have a great evening, folks!

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Drawing Another Waterfall

Wow, it has been a while since I have posted. I’ve been doing art everyday, but I’ve been forgetting to post it. I got over Covid, but now I’m deep in the middle of another cold that isn’t going away. I’ve also lost my voice (again). I think being sick, even with a cold, can totally take it out of you.

So meanwhile, in car line, I’ve been working on another waterfall picture. I’m not sure where this one is, but it’s really pretty. I’ve blocked it out with some shading, and I’ve actually started adding in some beginning detail to the surrounding rocks. I forgot to take a picture of it for the past few days, so here is my most recent one:

It’s not much to look at yet, but it will get better…

Here is the reference picture:

Oh, and I have added some more shading to the Niagara Falls picture. I made the middle falls darker:

I’m heading to Disney World, so I will work on Drawing something from there each day, and I promise I will be better at posting.

Have a great Sunday everyone!

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Niagara Falls Drawing Complete!

I finally finished this one in car line. I could probably go over each part again, but I’m definitely ready to move on to another drawing. I’m also hoping to start getting to more watercolor painting during the days while my daughter is in school. Hopefully next week I can start.

(Yes, I know it’s not much of a blog post. I’m watching the 49er’s/Packers game.)

Here it is:

Here is the reference pic:

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Drawing a Heart and the Importance of Good Equipment

I volunteered at my daughter’s school today and got to drive her home instead of waiting in car line. I didn’t get to start any artwork until around 9:45. I decided to draw a 3D Heart. I have done so many spheres and eggs and pyramids that I figured a new shape would be fun. I didn’t just want to draw any old heart, though. I decided to draw a heart at a super weird angle!

Through this little late-night exercise, I was reminded how important good equipment can be to the final outcome of your piece?

Why, you may ask?

Because tonight was a total equipment fail.

Here are some areas where equipment makes all the difference:

  • Pencil choice. Yes there are tons of artists pencils out there. I prefer the Mars Lumographs. I like how they blend, and I am used to them. Whatever pencils you choose are probably your favorites. I guarantee you that any pencil works better than the Target Generic Mechanical Not-Really-An-HB mechanical pencil that I decided to grab. Oh yeah, success at my fingertips… (I’ve actually found that the more expensive Bic mechanicals work really well.)
  • Paper. This, again, is personal. Just not that when you buy a Michael’s Artist’s Loft Sketchbook with 100 pages, it’s not the best, most blend-able paper out there. Nor should it be. It’s a sketchbook. It’s designed for people who need to do a quick sketch of a football or a 3D heart so they can draw something and go to bed.
  • The blending stump. Until tonight, I never would have thought the blending stump you choose mattered to the finished product. I bought some new ones off Amazon. I’m not sure if they were the problem or if it was me choosing the smallest on possible for no real reason other than I wanted to save my big ones for something more “important.” Anyway, this skinny blending stump, well it didn’t. You had one job to do, Stumpy! (On another note, these stumps will go aerosol when you have to grind them up with sandpaper, so make sure they are made of something you aren’t allergic to. I’m allergic to grain, including rice and corn., and I once bought stumps made of rice paper. I don’t mind touching rice paper, but little bits of rice paper sawdust floating through the air are bad for the breathing.)
  • Eyes. You need good eyes to draw stuff. If you don’t have good eyes, improve them. Get—and wear—glasses when you are trying to draw. I was lazy and did not get my glasses. It totally shows.
  • Erasers. I need my Tombow. I was already in bed and didn’t want to get it. So I used the generic Target Mechanical Pencil eraser, which doesn’t. My heart highlights aren’t. (The paper doesn’t help the eraser, either.)

One non-equipment related item. Posture and seating. Not only does lying on your side trying to draw in bed make your neck hurt, but it also doesn’t give you a good view of your work or a good angle to draw. My work is skewed partially because of laying on my bed instead of sitting up. (The other part of the issue is probably a Michelle Error…)

Anyway, what this amounted to: I couldn’t blend anything smoothly, so the heart looks cheesy. I couldn’t erase the heart highlights, and I couldn’t see whether or not my eraser was in the right spot because 1) I couldn’t actually see that close and 2) the eraser didn’t erase enough.

Below is the heart. It’s not too bad considering, but I’m definitely seeing how equipment and art supply choices make such a big difference.

Here is the reference picture:

What about you? Have you ever had an equipment fail?

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Drawing a Quick Football and more Niagara Falls

I managed to get through Covid only missing one day of drawing. Yesterday, I completed some more of the Niagara Falls picture, but I wasn’t able to post much. Tonight, I knew I wanted to draw, but I didn’t really have time to sit down and work on the falls since they were so intricate. I decided to draw a football, since that was kind of what I watched this weekend.

This is not the best football, nor is it anything I would try to sell. But it works. I drew something today, and I made the football’s shadow look like grass, so that was cool.

Here is my football:

I would talk more about it, but I need to get to bed so I can get Ellie to school tomorrow.

Here was yesterday’s Niagara Falls work. I basically started working on the middle falls after finishing the lower falls.

That last part is going to take a lot of detail work, so I’m saving it for car line.

Have a great evening, folks!

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Trying to Keep Up an Art Habit With Covid Omicron

It took almost two years into the pandemic for me to get Covid. My husband brought it home. Fortunately, we are both vaccinated and I got my booster in December, so our symptoms have been mostly mild. Two things have been frustrating, however.

  • Being exhausted with chills and aches
  • Having to take care of a hyper 6 year old who apparently doesn’t have Covid.

Normally she could go to school if Mommy and Daddy both just had mild colds with a sore throat, but we didn’t feel comfortable doing that.

Anyway, I have two things that I do as a rule every day:

  • Yoga (except I only do that 6 days a week to give myself a full day off)
  • Art

I gave up Yoga the moment my sore throat hit after my husband’s positive Covid test because I’ve read too many article on discontinuing exercise during Covid. However, I definitely want to keep the Art habit going. The problem is the exhaustion. I considered letting it go for today, but that would break my cycle of doing art each day for over a year. Right after my shower, I sat down with my sketchbook and added more detail to the Niagara Falls picture I’m doing. It only took about 10 minutes.

Here is what I have so far:. I worked on more of the lower falls section on the bottom left corner:

Yesterday, I worked on my picture while I was sitting on the sidewalk in line for my Covid test:

Have a healthy weekend! I’m heading to bed to try to shake this thing.

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Drawing Niagara Falls: Part 5

I’m looking at my last blog post and laughing on the inside because I said something about how my day was boring. That was Monday. Monday night, my husband came home and said he felt like he might be getting a cold and Tuesday afternoon he had a fever and tested positive for Covid. Needless to say, Tuesday was anything but boring. (I tested negative and the child has no symptoms so we have quarantined him to back of the house. We aren’t too worried because he was vaccinated and is already getting over it. He says the nasty two-month cough/cold that we all came down with in November felt tons worse than this.)

I’ve been working on the lower falls of my Niagara Falls picture. It’s slow coming, but I’m getting the hang of it. Right now, they look more like fog than rushing water, but I will get there soon.

Here it is so far. The bottom left is where all my newest work is. Ignore that weird looking dark “silver lining” around the bottom. It will eventually be turned into the other middle waterfall. I just needed to be able to see where the lower falls ended:

Have a great evening and stay healthy.

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Drawing Niagara Falls – Part 4

Some days, Art is totally boring. Like today. Today was boring.

Seriously, the most action-packed part of my day happened when I mopped the floors.

Anyway, I’m working on this Niagara Falls picture. I’m trying to make it look roaring and powerful without having to draw all the little drops. I don’t want it to looks stiff because it’s easy to make waterfalls looks stiff when you draw them. I think the issue I’ve had before is the angle of the water. It’s easy to draw the water angle flat. I ended up erasing some of my previous shading in the middle falls and changing the angle, making it fly farther forward.

During car line, I finished up the upper falls. I moved to the middle falls, but I began to realize that I need to map out the lower falls first.

Yep that was all I could get to during car line. I’m really hoping I can get more done tomorrow.

Here is what I have so far:

Here is the reference photo:

Have a great evening, folks!

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Drawing Niagara Falls- Part 3 (and a lesson learned)

I’m still working on this Niagara Falls drawing. I spent as much time resting today as I could to try to stop this cold before it took root (and it worked btw), so I only spent a few minutes on the picture. I began filling in the shading on the upper falls.

Problem: I didn’t shad it correctly in the beginning. I stretched out the left side too much and then I moved to the right side, and the dark part in the middle should be much bigger. I keep struggling to figure out where I am. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter as the viewer won’t be comparing the drawing to the reference picture, but they ing to figure out where I am and how to fix it is taking time.

Moral of the story: Do it right the first time and erase the darn thing if you have to instead of doubling down on a mistake in the layout phase of a picture.

Anyway, here is what I have so far:

Have a great evening, everyone!

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