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Dragon Scale Sorcery

This is the second installation of my vixen series! I wanted to play with perspective a bit and have a dynamic looking image. So I came up with this! Once my sketch on my Pastelbord was finished, I erased as much as I could and inked with my Micron pens. Since some parts of our foxy lady was closer and other parts were farther away, I dramatic line weight difference was key.

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Pro tip! Inking on Pastelbord is much easier with a fresh pen. Linework application will be much smoother.

After the ink was completely dry, I applied my first wash of red. Working wet into wet, I layered on color after color, eventually darkening it to my liking. You can still see the graphite marks are still peeking through. Be very careful with sketching too dark on Pastelbord. I’ve said it once, and I’ll be happy to say it again: this surface clings onto pastel, charcoal, colored pencil and graphite extremely well. So lifting marks (even with a kneaded eraser) can prove difficult.

All in all though, I’m very loose with color bleeding to other areas. Because of the surface’s thickness, lifting watercolor is fantastic. You can lift almost back to white!

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After mixing brown and ivory black paint, I kept chipping away at the background. As I figured out my color scheme ahead of time, I thought now would be a great chance to mess with different breeds of foxes, so I decided to make her a Grey fox.  Once finished, I started layering washes on the star of the show! I wanted a warmer palette as a contrast to her cooler counterpart, so I layered in reds for her hair and incorporated some background color that bled in.

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Pro tip #2! When layering an under-painting, those colors will show through on the final piece. Under-paintings can add depth to the overall image and can harmonize your colors when done right.

After getting the basic colors in, I layered more and more to build up the shadows. Once everything was set, it was time to break out my Prismacolors! I’ve never worried about conserving whites while working with these. That sandy surface really does wonders with colored pencils. My white always does the trick.

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Pro tip #3! When working on cold press or textured surfaces, make sure you have sharp tips on those pencils for stark, crisp marks.

 

After going back and forth, adding details from the red and green secondary light, to markings, to fire, to the shines of her eyes, our vixen is complete!

 

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Until next time!

~PK

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Local Art Opportunities

If you’re like me and you might not know where to go next with your art, why not reach out locally? Explore your city, scope the stores, check out the art scene. You might find out there’s more than you thought. And who knows, all that aimless wandering can lead you to an artistic adventure right in your backyard!

Yesterday was a prime example of just that. I attended two events on a last minute whim. One is called Art on the Porches which is an annual event where local small businesses, vendors, painters, and artisans sell their work and wares to the community. Everyone’s works of art displayed on beautiful residential porches.

Three days prior I saw a flyer calling for art. This lead me to a great opportunity to partner with the Public Arts Task Force and submit two paintings to their silent auction fundraiser. Now, I’ve been working digitally for a while but I have the softest spot for traditional media. Not only haven’t I worked with Masonite before, but I also picked back up acrylic as well! Talk about an evening of experimentation!

After finishing this one, I started having an internal war with myself. I fell hard and I didn’t want to let this kitten go! *UPDATE* She’s found her forever-home!

 

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“Tea and Company” Acrylic on hardboard 8×8

 

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Come on now, how could you say no to that little face?

The internal struggle continued every time I looked at that piece. I ended up creating a second one just in case. After much coaxing and prodding from my family, I caved and sent them both in. Not bad for three days worth of work. Though I’m sad to see two wonderful pieces go, I’m so happy that I was able to contribute something to a great cause. I hope they go out to great homes.

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“Spring Aromas” Acrylic on Masonite 8×8

 

After that event wrapped up, Plazapalooza was next on my to-do list and I met some more amazing people there. Everyone at both locations were so kind, exciting to talk to and had valuable information to share. I love that about art communities. There were people that were just starting out to those who have been in the market for decades. Everyone was willing to answer my questions and chat with me. It was an honor and a pleasure to fill my day surrounded by so much talent.

I’m telling you, if you want to try something new, go outside! Explore! I would have never found out about these local art opportunities if I didn’t wander around and end up at my art store. This was such a rewarding day and I could have never asked for anything better. I’ll start doing that now. If I feel artistically aimless, I’m going to explore my surroundings and see what’s happening around the community.

I wrote another post with 4 more tips on what to do when you’re stuck in an art rut. Check it out!

Have you taken advantage of your local community to do something new? Share in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

~PK