Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Ink and watercolor flowers

Last week with Mother's day approaching, I decided to experiment with a new style for card, and it turned out to be one of my favorite pieces that's I've done a while.  It works well as a single flat card that doubles as a frameable illustration, and I'm going to tell you how I did it. A little inspiration from my Pinterest flower board, a print I have at home, and all the ink illustrations I've been doing lately, I set to work sketching out these blossoms.

Free style sketching
I wanted to keep the style feeling loose and organic, so I didn't strive for exact replicas but instead used the images as a guide for the movement of the lines. If you're recreating at home, just a reminder you can do some major damage with an eraser, so you want to sketch as lightly and as little as possible. I'm using some pretty heavy 120lb stock watercolor paper and a 2H pencil which helps a little.

Next I drew over the lines with India ink, adding some variation in thickness. I am in desperate need of a new bottle of ink if anyone is looking for a for-no-reason gift for me. It starts to gunk once it gets to a certain age and I can't seem to find a replacement anywhere. 

Now you can actually see it.

Unlike watercolors, India ink is permanent once it is dried so I was able to do the watercolor last.  You could of course add your color first and ink second if you prefer. It did start to smudge if I pressed too hard with the paintbrush. When I started I wasn't sure if and how much color I would use so that's why I added mine afterwards. To avoid looking hippie psychedelic, I stuck with a 4 color palette of sherbert-y colors. 

I was so pumped, I even did a second one. 

Definitely going to use this style more in the future.  They didn't even take that long, only a few hours!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Wedding at the zoo part 2!

Back in January, I posted this fun save the date for a wedding at the Bronx Zoo.  My post at the time was one of the alts that didn't make the cut, so here's the one that did.

Clockwise from top left: save the date, reception card, invitation, reply card

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Watercolor wishes

This watercolor illustration has been a long time in the making. I hesitated on it for a while because I couldn't find the right words and wanted to use my own instead of a quote. It was, however, inspired by a meditation/prayer which I learned on my spiritual journey, but was unable to trace the origin of, "May you be happy, may you be healthy, may you live with ease."  You're supposed to say it to yourself when someone has pissed you off or has caused some deep therapy-necessitating emotional damage.  This one is more suited for a new home or marriage.

It's like, my version of an Irish wedding blessing

While technically I "hand drew" the letters, I did pretty much copy actual fonts while adding embellishments.

Cheater, cheater, pumpkin eater. Wait those aren't the words.

The colors aren't playing nice together and I don't like what's going on with the wind illustrations here. So those are changes that I'll be addressing in the next round.

You can even still see pencil marks--someone's lazy!

I do like the sunshine!

So there's the beta version, a happy wish for friends and enemies alike.