In the Name of Roses

Hi there!

How is life treating you lately? I hope all is well on your side of the world.

Today was a really dreary and cold day. The kind of day where all I’d want to do is stay in bed with a hot cuppa chai or a hot almond cinnamon chocolate drink and a good book.

But there were enough tasks to do, and so I got out of bed, took a hot shower, did my daily yoga and meditation and was off to work.

 

Appreciating the small things in life: roses. Digital sketch made with Ps and Ai.

 

One thing I got done today was to colour in my roses sketch I did on the weekend as part of the MATS Bootcamp roses study.

Roses are really tricky to draw. It’s like you see something and then when you put it down on paper, that what you had in mind looks nothing like what you executed on paper!

So, I tried again, and again, and again… until, after many failed attempts, I kind of got the hang of it. Or let’s say, I am not as intimidated by drawing them anymore.

In the following are the results of my weekend rose exercise sketches I dare to share:

Wild Roses: Pencil and black ink pen

 

Rosa Bourboniana: Pencil and black ink pen

 

And finally, the above shown digital sketch in pencil and black ink pen straight from my sketchbook. I made this one as a compilation of my rose exercise:

Appreciating the small things in life: roses!

 

I think this weekend and for the moment, wild roses turned out to be my favourite roses.

Not just because they are relatively simple to draw; because they are. But, their simple shape and pink colour tossed around haphazardly in a juicy green bush is so beautifully chaotic and charming. A bit like an abstract painting.

I guess it’s kind of in my nature as a Sagittarius to like all things wild. 😉

The other thing I noticed is, I must have quite a vivid imagination because while sketching, drawing, inking and working digitally on all roses, I had the feeling I could actually make out the scent of the roses as if I were sniffling in a bunch of roses as depicted in the above sketch.

Now where many artists and designers participating in MATS Bootcamp mentioned having had this on their mind ‘Roses are red, violets…’, I couldn’t help having the song: ‘I beg your pardon, I never promised you a rose garden,…’ on my mind.

After a while, it felt a bit like a broken record, I must admit, and I am glad that I was able to knock it out of my mind.

But as for roses, what more can I say than: they are simply beautiful.


May your week be beautiful!


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Time

Doing a little writing challenge and combining it with my daily sketch for 60 days.

I’ll be writing everyday at least 500 words (unedited) for 31 days. Both challenges are intended for the extra exercise and routine.

Of course I am also wishing to create engaging content for you, too. But please forgive me if I’m just rambling on.

As for today, it marks the third day of my daily sketch and the second day of the writing challenge.

conceptoftime
Time: gouache and gold ink; daily sketch day 3/60

 

I did not intend to paint clocks. And, had I realised what a terribly complex topic writing about the concept of time would turn out to be, I would have painted some simple blotches to which I could have wrote just anything! But I stuck it through, for better of for worse. Tomorrow I’ll need to come up with something simpler to write about. 😉


Time (31 day writing challenge 2/31)

The last couple of years, I’ve had a feeling that time is passing really fast. And I mean, really fast! 2016 felt not different. Is time flying by? Or am I flying with time?

Accepting age as a factor for a fast time perception alone does not satisfy me at all. I really dislike when people blame ‘whatever’ on age. But I’ll give the age argument a fair chance and contemplate its influence on my personal time perception:

Let me travel back to when I was a toddler. I barely remember anything in the first couple of years of my life. Or let’s phrase it differently; I’ve go no memory of time related sensations. I’m guessing, as a child, I still did not have enough awareness to add the time factor into the experiences I was making. Early on in life, my only concern was to quench my thirst or hunger, poop, rest or explore this strange new place I found myself in and be as cute as possible to make sure the ones feeding me (my parents – a concept I did not understand in the beginning of my existence) will continue with keeping me warm, dry and well fed.

Around the age of three and four, memories started to kick in and got archived. Gradually there were more things to remember and more things to look forward to. A great experience wished to be repeated and not so great ones, well, avoided. And before I even realised it happening, I was stuck in either past memories (good or bad) or dreaming or fearing the future, disassociating myself from the present.

I feel that my ability as a child to be more in the present did not stem from my age as such, but from my disinterest in the past and the future and an in-the-moment concentration on what I was experiencing. The more I grew into the time concept of past and future, the more I was jolted out of the ‘timeless’ experience of the now into a decelerated perception of my passing days and existence.

As I grew older troubles and worries derived from challenging circumstances made life harder. Worries in particular are like chains that couple past traumas with future angst. It’s like an endless loop in coding or a dog chasing its tale. There is no clear beginning nor visible end to worries. Looking back I can say that worries decelerated my time perception massively.

Until, well, because I set upon a path to consciously return to the present moment, which in my case would be by means of yoga and meditation I was able to break out of the endless loop and feeling of stagnation.

Time can pass quickly when we are engaged in something we enjoy, but it can also pass quickly while we are engaged in so much ‘doing’ that we miss out on the ‘being’, which in my opinion is also a lesser than desirable state of being. There needs to be a balance of movement and stillness within time.

Thinking about it, from a happy person’s perspective life will not seem much longer than a blink of an eye. For a person who is suffering, life is an endless endurance and time seemingly stands still.

The thing is, circumstances cannot necessarily be influenced directly or even changed. Life will always bring its fair share of challenging situations. There will always be things do that I do not enjoy so much. But, whatever the circumstance, I can always decide to be happy and engage in life with utmost awareness and aliveness to make the best of the present moment and fly with time.

Time should not just fly by nor should it stand still. We should fly with time and make best use of it.

 


For now, I just want to fall into bed!

Good night and sweet dreams.


Advent Day 19: Christmas Gift Boxes

Here a very quick illustration for today’s Advent day 19, because my day was spent wrapping Christmas gifts:

Christmas Gift Boxes
Christmas Gift Boxes

 

I really enjoy wrapping presents. A lot of love and attention to detail goes into the gifts I wrap. I’ve never managed to get a paper, add a ribbon and call it a day.

Most commonly, I use wrapping tissue in all possible colours and layer them. To me, wrapping tissue is the watercolour amongst the wrapping papers. And, I always have a stock of wrapping tissue in various colours at home.

Another type of wrapping paper I like to use is the natural brown one. There are endless possibilities with this paper.

Finally, on some occasions I will even use fabrics.

 

It just makes me happy, when those on the receiving end not only enjoy the gift but the process of seeing the gift and unwrapping it, too.

As a child, I used to make many, many Christmas presents for my parents. No matter how small the gift, each one would be wrapped separately.

Presents wrapped-up were (and still are) a delight to my eyes. So much so, that I would prolong the opening moment to such extent that my parents would get all jittery and started persuading me to start opening the gifts!

When I finally gave in to their wish, I would take it nice and slow with unwrapping. Ribbon after ribbon, sticky tape after sticky tape. I made sure no paper or ribbon was ruined. Because, you know, maybe it could be used to make something –  I don’t know – just something.

Still today, I am not the tear open gift ‘unwrapper’. I still enjoy looking at wrapped gifts – even if they are not meant for me.

I guess it’s just my ‘thing’.

(In case you were wondering, I’ve never ironed wrapping paper… ok, ribbons and fabrics? yes; paper? no)

 

Do you have a ‘thing’ when it comes to gift wrappings?


Happy 19th day of Advent and see you tomorrow.


Best Friends

Another really quick one for Friday night’s #colour_collective colour Jade.

Best Friends: digital illustration made with Photoshop
Best Friends: digital illustration made with Photoshop
I was running late with this illustration as I am also busy with #inktober, #AnimalAlphabets (on Twitter), and am preparing for NaNoWriMo.

The thing is, with help of #inktober, I am trying to overcome a writer’s block. It became strange to me that as soon as I ventured to write a story, I simply couldn’t. Whatever idea may have popped up in my mind, by the time I had pen and paper ready (even if it was a matter of seconds) I went blank.

The only other time I’ve ever experienced going blank was during some exams at uni. While the explanation for why I was going blank at uni was clearly a fear of failing and a pressure to succeed, what was the obstacle with writing a story?

Because pondering the source of my writer’s block could take ages, I decided to throw myself into the deep end and just write!

And as Mr Jake Parker says so well: ‘Finished not perfect‘. My goal is to finish a story, not to create a perfect one.

That is why I am treating myself to #inktober. Maybe, I was biting off a bit more than I can chew, because so far, it hasn’t been easy to schedule this tight timetable. But I am sticking to it for as long as I possibly can.

You can follow my #inktober drawings daily on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.


Have a good night, a relaxed weekend and a great new week’s start!


 

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Magical Encounter

For this evening’s #colour_collective colour Barn Red:

#colour_collecitve colour Barn Red: Made with Photoshop on a Wacom Cintiq 22HD, making custom brushes and using Kyle T. Webster's brushes
#colour_collecitve Barn Red: made with Photoshop on a Wacom Cintiq22HD using custom and Kyle T. Webster’s brushes

I was a tiny bit under time pressure for this evening’s #colour_collective with this one.

So, it is not entirely finished, as there are a few things I still will need to even out.

Originally, I planned on using Kyle T. Websters watercolour brushes to make the birch tree custom brushes, but time was too tight.

I am starting to like this simple and flat graphic illustration style and feel it is a nice addition to my more retro styled watercolour illustrations of the three kids.

But, for now, it’s way past my bedtime hours, so:


Good night to all and the sweetest of dreams!
May you have a lovely weekend!


Fun on the Swing

swing_cc_indanthrene
Fun on the Swing: digital art made with Photoshop using Kyle Webster’s watercolour brushes and Belgian comic brush (still am fond of these digital brushes)
In the last weeks, I’ve been busy with my Paradigm Shift paintings and missed out on a couple of #colour_collectives and many a #worldwatercolormonth contribution.

But, I am happy to have made it to tonight’s #colour_collective colour Indanthrene (or Indathrene? or Indothrone? – seen all versions online) Blue with a simple digital contribution and pleased to share it with you.


May you have a wonderful weekend!