We had the prettiest snow here a few weeks ago – big fat flakes drifting down, just enough to cover the grass in a soft white blanket. I took a long drive in the country to visit a friend and just feasted my eyes on the beautiful Breugel-esque rolling hills. It’s been in my mind ever since, so here’s a little drawing to get it out onto paper.
14×7, colored pencils
My sister moved from my hometown in Wisconsin to Colorado Springs this year. For Christmas, I wanted to make her something that would celebrate her new home & remind her of other home. So, I made two pieces- one (above) of Pike’s Peak, the iconic mountain she can see from her new apartment, along with some other local Colorado sights and flora. I included The Garden of the Gods, some Rocky Mountain Columbine (gosh, what a beautiful flower) and some sage.
The other painting, below, is of a corner of my parent’s backyard- something so specific to us that it makes my heart ache a little bit looking at it. (In a good way!) Our crooked little trees, the beautiful ponds, the golden yellow fields, my mother’s favorite flower, and our steadfast great blue heron pal.
It was really lovely to return, in a way, to the landscape series I’d been creating before. I’ve enjoyed these types of pieces more and more as they’ve gotten more personal (and I can think of few places more personal to me than the backyard of the home I grew up in!)
Looking forward to falling in love with more places and drawing them, too.
I realized I should get some practice drawing interior spaces, so I dreamed up this little illo of some siblings embroiled in a fierce game of pretend. I do think I started to find fun in the background elements – I liked the storytelling I could accomplish by adding toys/clutter/etc.
It’s based on a watercolor piece I did a few months back:
Bit of ink & watercolor silliness. I find that when I try to do pieces for my portfolio, I always overthink & make them so much more complex than they need to be. I’m wondering if maybe I explore some ideas with traditional media, where I usually keep things pared down anyway, maybe I can keep that looseness if/when I do a “real” (digital) version for my portfolio.
Hilariously I write in that caption that I sometimes overthink/overcomplicate things when I go digital, which I’m pretty sure is exactly what happened here anyway! At least I know myself!
I’m continuing my explorations of some of my Inktober pieces. One sequence I found particularly fun to draw were these little patterns of plants, drawn with a brush pen and felt tip pen. (Originals available for purchase, by the way!)
I scanned them in and took them apart into 80-something little individual icons. Photoshop did NOT enjoy that particular export-to-layers, but we survived! I then took them into Illustrator and I’ve been playing around with making different repeats. I’ve really only dabbled in this before, but it’s always interesting to me.
I’m really enjoying seeing how much I can stretch & transform one set of little plants! I’m also finding myself looking around my house, visualizing patterns on every surface trying to think of what might look good where..
Now that Inktober is over and I have this collection of new work, I’m trying to go back and revisit pieces to see if I can turn any of them into interesting products or patterns.
First on my list was definitely the little cycle of cacti I doodled in red ink & ballpoint. They were simple and fun and I loved the texture created by the super thin ballpoint lines. I’m sure I’ll be drawing more of the little guys in the future, too!
I scanned them in, cleaned them up, and played with the colors a bit. I actually like the red a lot, but I’ve been looking at red for 31 days and I’m ready for some new colors! So, I shifted them around to some shades of green and grey, which I think is a bit more calming. After that, I tossed them into Illustrator and made a quick pattern in a few variations:
I love how the pattern came together! Now I’m just trying to imagine what cute cactus-print things I could make! Wallpaper? Curtains? Pencil cases? (Can never have too many pencil cases!)
PS: The green version of each cactus is now available as a print or art card from inprnt as well! They make a really cute trio.
Whew! I made it through Inktober without missing a single day!
(I will admit, I tried to keep a few pieces ahead for a buffer..)
I’ve also made a little gallery of all the pieces.
For every day in October, I did a straight-to-ink painting in red & black. They’re all 8″x8″ and botanical/plant inspired. Beyond that… well, I tried every single thing I could think of! I used a lot of different materials – brush pens, dip pens, felt tip pens, ballpoint, markers, etc.
It was really fun trying to find ways to keep things fresh & interesting, and also going back and mining ideas to see what I could riff on. I certainly feel like I have a lot to keep building on over the next few months. That said.. I’ll be glad I don’t need to do it EVERY DAY anymore!
Nearly all of these pieces are available for sale on my shop. I hope to do a few prints & other things with them soon as well so stay tuned.
Had this idea rattling around in my head for a week or two – glad I managed to get it out. A friend of mine is moving away and she gave me her massive set of primsacolor pencils, including some crazy neon colors. I’m normally more into muted palettes – especially lately – but I couldn’t resist. However, I have certainly learned a bit about how hard it is to digitize those crazy neon colors!
Putting my green colored pencils through the ringer again, for another piece inspired by my local park.
I later learned that the flower I’d photographed as my reference for this drawing is bindweed, an apparently frustrating weed, and yet I find it beautiful just the same.
11 x 14, colored pencil on paper.
I’ve been painting and drawing with ink a lot lately. I’ve been using a few different methods and materials – dip pen, brush, and a few different waterbrushes that I’ve filled with acrylic ink. Most of the red/teal you see here is from those waterbrushes- I’m finding I really like the color combination.
All three of these paintings are for sale and will be coming with me to SPX this fall, so if anything catches your eye, shoot me an email (nugent . liz @ gmail . com) or drop by table L11A!
One last piece, a few doodles cobbled together digitally, is available as a print!