Day 2 of my drawing therapy and I’ve drawn Big Al, Sktchy artist and muse. I used a new dip pen I bought recently and India ink – hence the blob of ink on Al’s ear. I forgot that pen and ink can be messy! But it’s also fun.
I made this portrait in my Moleskine watercolour sketchbook with pen and ink, Zecchi watercolours , Prismacolor coloured pencils and a white gel pen.
I’ve been having fun today making ink from poppy petals. Once I had some ink I drew this portrait of Sktchy member Angela with my hand whittled pens. Then I squeezed lemon juice on the portrait to turn the ink pink on the hood, cheeks, eyes, and nose and I brushed a little of the juice onto the eyes too. I love how pink it became! I’m really enjoying playing with these natural inks – I sourced some gum arabic today and I’m hoping I can get hold of some baking soda in the next day or two, all of which will help me experiment more.
I used poppy ink made from foraged poppy petals, freshly squeezed lemon juice, pens whittled from a branch picked up on a dog walk and a Seawhites sketchbook.
This is a portrait of Lois for Lesson 2 of the Sktchy course Ink Naturally with Dylan Sara. Dylan showed us how to draw a portrait with 2 contrasting home-made inks and a hand made calligraphy pen. He used ink made with turmeric and walnuts.
I didn’t have any turmeric or walnuts so I made ink from paprika (I just added hot water and that’s the yellow ink) and tea – that’s the brown ink. I added a drop of India ink to my brown tea ink to darken it because it wasn’t dark enough. I drew the portrait using a pen I made from a whittled stick a year or so ago. It has a fat rounded nib rather than a more blunt calligraphy nib. I’m pretty happy with this given I was just using what I could find in my house. I’ll be buying some turmeric and walnuts this week and making some ink for further experimentation…
For people who draw and share their work online October is arguably the most important month of the year. It’s the month of Inktober. Started I don’t know how many years ago by superduper pen and ink artist Jake Parker, it’s the biggest monthly drawing challenge of them all. The challenge is to make a drawing in pen and ink and share it online with the #inktober hashtag every day of the month. Jake posts a set of daily prompts every year at the beginning of September, but you don’t have to follow them, and Inktober is now so huge that there are many, many alternative prompt lists and drawing challenges if Jake’s doesn’t appeal (my favourite alternative is Mab’s Drawlloween Club which you can find on Instagram – follow @mabgraves for that).
I have completed Inktober a couple of times but last year I took a year off. But I felt like I was missing out. So this year I’ve decided to take a relaxed approach and do some days but maybe not everyday. And instead of drawing in my sketchbook I’m going to use it to explore all the digital ink brushes I’ve got but have never used. So this is a portrait of Thiago and is today’s suggested photo for the Sktchy Inktober group and today’s prompt “mindless”. I used the dry ink brush that comes with Procreate to draw it.
If you want to do Inktober or simply find out more about it you can you can visit the Inktober website at https://inktober.com. If you want to see inktober art just search for #inktober on Instagram, Tumblr or Pinterest. I’ll only be posting my faces here; if you want to see the rest of my Inktober art head over to my Instagram account @helenlp.