My mum had a recent hospital visit, and I wanted to make her a card. I’ve taken to making my own cards recently as not only do they hold more meaning to the receiver than mass produced greetings cards, they push me to create and give me more examples for my portfolio.
I had the most cheesy idea pop into my head on Monday morning — “get ‘well’ soon”. I uhmmed and ahhed about it for a few minutes, experiencing doubts about being able to pull it off, but eventually thought “f**k it” and got stuck in.
A quick search for wells on Goolge Images gave me some ideas about how I wanted it to look. I quickly sketched out a design for a well in my sketchbook before re-sketching it onto a blank card. I chose a Pigma Micron 0.05 for the ink work. I love the detail and control that the tiny nib gives me, and the ink is a wonderfully deep black. The ink lines didn’t take too long. I wanted to get away from shading as not only am I still trying to get the hang of it, but I also wanted the piece to be a bit more cheerful. Instead of shading, I opted to colour it with watercolours. I haven’t done anything like this for some time, and started off applying flat colour. I soon realised this wasn’t how I wanted to do it, but instead use varying shades to give the piece a more three-dimensional look. You can see the left column of tiles is a little flat where I painted before changing my mind. I was pleased with how it came out — especially the stonework on the well’s base. I wasn’t so pleased with the painting of the ivy. I must have mixed the paint too thick, and it obscured the line work somewhat. I feel like any time I indulge in traditional art, I’m making mistakes, but learning loads at the same time. It’s just a case of pressing on and pushing through that fear of making mistakes with my work — and this is how I grow.
This piece has inspired me to try out similar techniques with more complicated scenes — perhaps some line drawings of picturesque places like Tenby or Llandeilo — the ‘chocolate box’ aesthetic would suit them well. My next step is to visit and take some source photos to work from.