Monday, June 29, 2015

Plein Air & Chalk Festival, Aug. 15th

If you live near Eugene/Springfield, OR, and you love creating art outdoors, then we have a great opportunity for you! Join our Plein Air and Chalk Festival on August 15th, sponsored by Imagination International, Inc. (that's us). Cash Prizes!

Visit the registration site for more details.

Last year, I participated in the chalk drawing portion, and had a blast drawing my whimsical pirate! I've never participated in a chalk drawing event before, since markers are my main art medium. It was a wonderful challenge.

There were lots of people who stopped by to see the great artwork being generated. It was so much fun to see families and friends wandering by to better understand the process that artists go through. So even if you aren't participating as an artist, please come and see what excitement is going on. This year is even better, since artists will be allowed to draw, paint, or create all over the downtown Springfield area.

So, please join us for this fun summer event!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Coloring flowers book signing today

Today I will be teaching workshops at Main Street Stamping in Tigard, OR. All my classes are from my new book, Coloring Flowers with Copic Markers. If you would like to come pick up an autographed copy of the book, stop by from 4-5pm. I can't wait to see you there!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Coloring a flower girl

Little Flower Girl
Last week I had the pleasure of coloring all afternoon at a demo. It's so relaxing to just sit and color. sigh. I wish life gave us all more opportunities to just sit and color. Can you imagine how much nicer everyone would be if they spent an hour each day coloring?

Anyways, while I was at the demo I colored this flower image you can download from the Copic website.  Many of the flower images I drew to match tutorials found in the Coloring Flowers with Copic book we sell.

This picture I drew for our website to match the 4th project in the book, so, in the book you learn how to color this style of flower, using palette blending for the dark colors. While coloring at the demo, I only took step-by-step photos of coloring the girl because the flowers are discussed in the book.

Even though this picture is simple, I tried to keep my shadows consistent on the little girl, with the sunlight hitting her face strongest. The flowers are more of a design element, so I just colored those in, without much worry over shadows, except a little bit on the leaves.

I started by coloring her dress with a base of R81, and added shading with R85. I knew that the hearts would be a darker purple, so I just colored right over the pattern and didn't stress about coloring around them. The darker purple is V06, with shadows of RV69. Notice how I left a lighter highlight on the back of the dress, along with the stronger highlight on the front. This makes the shading stand out more. Be careful not to blend out all your contrast, or your work will look too flat. High contrast makes art more interesting to look at.

I colored her skin with E00, E21 then added shadows with E13. I added light layers of  B00, R30, and a hint of R31 to change the tone. Her basket was colored with E31, E35, and R39.

Then I worked on coloring the flowers. The yellow flowers are colored with Y32, YR65, and R05. Centers are E35. The pink flowers are R81, R85, R39, and centers are RV69.

Leaves are YG11, and YG17 (notice how much contrast I use in my greens, I jump straight from YG11 to YG17. It makes them more vibrant). I darkened the deepest leaf shadows with G28.

I finished with a pale B00 sky background that I faded out to the white of the paper using the Colorless blender.

I had such a relaxing time coloring this picture. It took about 2.5 hrs to color, since it is a full sheet of paper and I was also helping customers during that time. Coloring all those little flowers kept my hands busy while my mind wandered. I ended up staying at the demo an extra hour or so because I was having so much fun coloring!

(I'm sure none of you have ever stayed up too late coloring because you were "in the zone".)

I'll be sure to post some more tutorials, even though I am super busy writing my next two books. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Coloring a knight in armor

Shiny Metal
A few weeks ago I was at a demo up in Winnipeg, Alberta. I had a chance to make a quick sketch of a knight and color it in the second day of their open house event. I don't remember exactly what colors I used, but I will try and guess as I show you a few step-by-step pictures.

I drew this guy with a 0.05mm multiliner onto Copic Alcohol Marker Pad paper. Then, I photocopied my outlines onto the new Art Paper Pack paper (Copic Sketchbook paper).

I began coloring his blue surcoat. I think I used B000, B32, B45, BV13, Y00, and maybe a couple others. Notice how I left the highlights on each wrinkle a clean, crisp white. This enhances the shadows and adds a nice contrast on a fabric that is supposed to appear pale.

Then I moved onto his reflective metal. Notice the strong contrast, the bright whites that I left, right next to the dark grays. I used a wide range of the cool gray markers, then added highlights of Y00, and extra shadows with B000.

I can't remember what colors I used on the back of the shield, but I gradually built up colors and contrast until I got the look I wanted.

Notice the light sketch suggesting a background. I didn't want hard lines to define the background or foreground, as I wanted to keep the knight the most important/highest contrast  object in the picture.

I kept working around his image, darkening the chain mail with the same cool grays I used on the shinier metal areas.

On his arm bands, I wanted a different feel. I honestly don't remember what material I was trying to achieve, just something kinda dusty so it didn't conflict with the other metal in his ensemble. The leather straps were closed with a range of E11, E13, E15, E18, and some grays.

Again, notice how I left strong contrast on the metal sword, but included faint highlights of pale yellow to enhance the white areas.

Here is a quick photo of the final image. I colored the cape with R24, R29, R59, Y00, and B39.

To simulate depth of field in the illustration, I kept my highest contrast on grass and shrubs in the foreground, with details and color range getting lost as it heads off into the distance. I finished up with highlights of Opaque White on many of the metal objects.

Overall, I liked this more when I was drawing and coloring it, but now that I look at it a month later, it's hard for me not to see the flaws. (We tend to be our own worst critics sometimes)

If you are working on a piece of art, don't get hung up on the flaws! Just try next time to do it better. I know what I want to change next time I draw a knight. However, the parts I really like are the colors on the surcoat and cape. I also like how I colored the helmet and steel boots.

Meanwhile, don't forget to come visit me at my free book signing events for my Coloring Flowers book!

Friday, May 29, 1-4pm, U of O Bookstore, Eugene OR
Saturday, June 13, 4-5pm, Main Street Stamping, Tigard OR

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Congrats to the book winners!!

I'm back from my recent trip and I've had a chance to randomly select the winners for a giveaway of my new book. Thank you so much to everyone who left a comment! It gave me lots of ideas for future topics, and confirmed some ideas that I already wanted to explore.

So, without further ado, the randomly selected winners are:

#4- Stampin Melissa

#26- Erin Ellis

#49- Ginny B

I know you will each love the book! Have a wonderful weekend everyone, and don't forget to color something fun!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Book Signing Events

For those of you in Oregon, I have a couple book-signing events coming up:

Friday, May 29th, from 1-4pm at the U of O Bookstore in Eugene, OR, main campus location. I'll be downstairs in the art department offering free Copic demos and book signings.

Saturday, June 13th, from 4-5pm Main St Stamping and Stationary in Tigard, OR.
The morning/afternoon of June 13th, I will also be teaching three classes straight from the flowers book. To register for those classes, please contact Main St. Stamping directly.

For other workshops and demos, please visit the Copic Website. 

Coloring Flowers with Copic Markers Book - Giveaway

It's here! It finally arrived!!

I've been waiting weeks and weeks for the main shipment of my new book, Coloring Flowers with Copic Markers.

I'm so excited because this book is not just a book, it's part of a whole series of awesome information. Who is this book written for?

• If you like flowers -flowers of all kinds- and you're a paper crafter, or an artist, or an illustrator, or just someone who likes to color, then this book is for you!

• If you're a beginner, this book is for you!

• If you're skilled and looking for tips to make your work look more professional, with depth and interesting coloration, then this book is for you!

• Hablamos Español? ¡Esta libro es para tí! Es todos en Español y English.
(and that right there is the extent of the Spanish I remember from High School, luckily I'm not the one who translated the books!)

For only $9.95, you can order a copy of the book by clicking here. Or, for $2 more, you can order an autographed copy.

Coloring Foundations Series
What's even better is that if you are a beginner and you ONLY care about flowers, then you don't need any other books. That's the great part of this new series. Each of these new books stands alone. So, the next book in the series that is going through final proofing now is Coloring Faces and Hair with Copic Markers. And after that, I'm finishing writing the Intro to Coloring with Copic Markers book, which is more generic. This week I'm also coloring the artwork for the 4th book, Coloring Cats and Dogs with Copic Markers, and next I'm drawing pictures for...

Do you get the picture? This series is going to be a lot of books that are all about exactly what YOU want to learn how to color! All in easy to follow along tutorials, with multiple color variations for each image.

Blank Art is in the back
In each book, there are blank outlines for each tutorial that you can photocopy to color along with the beautiful step-by-step photographs.

People ask me all the time what is my favorite paper to color on. I actually use our Copic Sketchbook paper, a super-smooth, medium weight paper that is very crisp and great for drawing illustrations. But, pulling a page out of your sketchbook isn't feasible. So, we are now selling the sketchbook paper as our new Art Pack- Paper for Markers. These packs of letter-sized paper are meant to run through a photocopier. In fact, this is the paper I use for just about any workshop I teach.  All those blank images in the back of the book will look great on this paper, because this is the paper I colored all the original artwork on for the books!

Note: If you are outside the US and Canada and are interested in purchasing the book or paper, please email us-  Wholesale inquiries are also welcome.

Download even more art
Now, you've bought the book, you got the special paper that I use, and you've colored some of the tutorials. You're pumped, you're excited, you are now an amazing Flower-coloring-machine!

But what else can you color? I've got you covered there as well.

Brand new to the Copic website, we are selling 8.5" x 11" downloadable line art to match the new books. For only $0.99 a download! And, the flowers incorporated in the illustrations are the same kinds of flowers taught in the book. I drew those pictures just for you, so you can have even more great things to color.

Right now there really aren't many images uploaded...yet.

Every couple weeks we will be uploading new artwork, and not just flowers. See the cool green bug on the paper pack? I posted a tutorial last Fall about that bug. Well, now you can download the outline and color in that exact bug! Maybe you really like that butterfly I colored earlier here on my blog, well that is uploaded to the website as well. Isn't that cool!?!? I am so happy I can finally share my favorite blog illustrations so you can also color along! And, anyone around the world can download these images, no problem.

Win a Free Autographed Book and Paper pack
Whew! That's a lot of information in one post, but I am so excited! In fact, I'm so excited, I want to give away some of these books and share the awesomeness with you.

• If you want to win your own, autographed version of the Flowers book and a pack of paper, please leave a comment on this blog post. Include your email so we can get in touch with you. Tell me what topics you would love to see written into future books or made into downloadable line art (besides Flowers, Faces & Hair, Cats & Dogs, since I'm already working on those).

Next Friday, when I am back in town, I will choose 3 lucky winners.

Easy as that. Good luck, and thanks in advance for letting me know what you want to see a book about!