Friday, February 29, 2008

Café sketch

Went to a café yesterday, and did a rather quick sketch in ink while sipping a cappuccino. I did the watercolours when I got home, trying to convey the difference between the warm light inside the café and the colder light outside the windows. I think they look a bit too much the same, but I didn´t dare to lay down more layers of colour on this, since I think some of the dark areas are beginning to go numb.

People always look a bit wonky when I do sketches like this one, because I don´t dare to stare at them for too long when I´m so close to them. I kind of guess where the lines go half the time. I´m longing for summer when it´s easier to go out and draw outside, when you don´t have to sit right next to your subject...

16 x 11 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s Lexington gray ink, and watercolours on Arches hot press watercolour paper.

Thursday, February 28, 2008


I thought I´d never get to eat it....

I´ve been trying out my new Niji Waterbrush with a flat brush tip. Can you imagine that not one single art supplier in Sweden offer these fantastic tools for sale? I have been looking and looking for some place to get it, and finally found a place where I can at least order it online without too expensive shipping costs... From Norway. Thank you, Norway.

14,5 x 12 cm, Lamy Safari with Noodler´s black ink and watercolours on Arches hot press watercolour paper.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


I finished the house I started working on right after my watercolour class a few weeks ago (see earlier post), experimenting with prints and stencils among other things. I think it turned out pretty well, for a first trial. Since a part of my art plan for this year is to work in series, I will keep experimenting with these techniques some more. We´ll see where it lands.

15,5 x 18,5 cm, watercolours on Arches wc-paper, fine grain.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The drawing spirit´s back

I´ve had a drawing hiatus for a week, the flu has been taking the best of me and holding a pen felt like an unthinkable thing to do.

Today was the day when the drawing urge returned, finally, and I grabbed my technical pens and some coloured pencils and drew the tulips on the kitchen table. Tulips in February is a tradition in our household, as I guess it is in many others too. It feels like the perfect way to celebrate that light is returning more and more every day, and that spring doesn´t feel so far away even though we´re in the middle of one of the coldest months of the year. (Well, except for this particular year, we have the warmest winter in 250 years in Sweden right now. But usually February is frightfully cold.)

Note to self: get a better tulip vase! They look cramped in this one when they are new, they deserve better...

12,5 x 17,5 cm, Faber-Castell technical pens and coloured pencils on Moleskine sketchbook page.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Watercolour experiments

As I said in my last post, I took a class in experimental watercolours last weekend. It was truly amazing. The teachers were great - check their work here: Gunnel Moheim (click "akvarell" and then "titta på bilder") and AnnMari Löf. They made everybody feel comfortable with playing around with the colours without necessarily reaching a finished result, trying new things, see new possibilities and gave us lots of tips and hints along the way. I loosened up a lot, finally dared to let watercolours do what they want on the paper without trying to control everything.

I learned a lot, most of all how little I know about watercolours... I realized that I need to practice, practice, practice, plus I need to find out a lot more about pigments and their properties.

Gunnel and AnnMari shared a lot of great techniques, like painting with rags, printing with various materials, painting through nets, pouring paint on the paper, and lots more. They filled a table with stuff to use in our work; rags, plastic, wood, pins, cloth, metal, packing materials, etc, and I really enjoyed experimenting with all their fantastic techniques. (Yes, we did use brushes too, occasionally...)

One thing that I discovered, is that I´ve been much too afraid to use WATER. Water is key, lots of water. That´s how you get the pigments to work in their own special ways, not just the colours. Some pigments bite, some make lines when they dry, some float around and some sink into the pools of the paper grain. Fun, fun, fun!

I feel like a total beginner again, and I´m itching for this work week to end to get some time to practice!

The images are all watercolours in techniques that I would never have dreamed up on my own, on watercolour paper of different grains. They are not in any way finished, they are just details of stuff I made during and after the class. Have no idea how big they are, either, and I´m too lazy to go measure them all. :)