Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Teabag sketching tutorial

Sketching on used teabags and preparing them is fairly simple and quick to do.
I have been experimenting with sketching on them after sticking them down in my journal which is an old book first printed in the seventies. It's actually a very young book since it was printed in the same year  that I was born ;) 
I do not prime my pages but you can if you want to. If you are thinking of using a book to journal in then my advise would be to test a few pages with different mediums to see how the paper handles them especially if you intend to saturate them with watercolour washes.

You can use most teabags but I just happened to have folded ones that look like these:
After you have used your teabag , put it in a warm place or out in the sun to dry out. This should take a couple of days depending on the temperature.

Step 1: unfold the bag from it's original state and carefully open it at one end.

Step 2: empty the dried tea into the soil of a plant or in your garden. It makes good feed.

Step 3: Now you have your bag ready to sketch on. No need to iron it out unless you want to.

Step 4: This is a picture of a typical square teabag. Follow previous steps but use a pair of scissors to open the bag on three of its side. You should have a nice rectangle shape to work with.

Step 5:  I used a simple glue stick to adhere my teabag to my book page. It works fine for my paper but I have not tried it on watercolour paper yet. I like this glue because when my teabag gets damp from using watercolour and it can unstick around the edges. This gives me the option to play with the edges.  If your bag un glues itself  just go around the edges with the stick and stick it down again. An alternative to the glue stick would be a very light coating of PVA glue.

Step 6: This is what the bag looks like when stuck down.  You will see that it has a nice aged look and that is because my teabag contained a black tea blend which creates a darker stain. 
I also like the subtle stains created by Green Teas and herbal mixes. I work with whatever colour the bag is stained.

To prevent bleeding occurring on the bag I used pigment line markers to sketch on them or a fountain pen with a fine nib filled with Noodler's Bulletproof black ink. These do not seem to run or bleed. 
Carbon ink should also work although I have not tried it or India ink using a dip pen.

In the above photo are the pens that I use to sketch with that do not seem to bleed whilst sketching on the bags. From the left : Staedtler pigment liner, Pentel brush pen, Artline Pigment liner, Zig Millennium pen and a Uni ball micro pen.

I am considering teaching this technique on an online class when I figure out how to set one up and depending on interest as this will take a lot of preparation and video editing. Included will be demonstrations on how I finish and start my pages, the techniques that I apply and materials that I use.

Happy creating!


Wednesday, 23 July 2014




Sunday, 18 May 2014

everyday Matters 360 day challenge

Yes, you read that right!
This drawing challenge stems from Danny Gregory's book, Everyday Matters, which I do not own. On his Facebook group (with the same title), there is a list with 360 things and you are to draw a specific thing for each day.
I very much doubt that i will finish the list but I will try, Sketchbook Skool , has finished but inspiration continues in the Closed Facebook group. It was a fun semester and a nice experience. I was inspired to draw with a pen, actually draw something decent with coloured pencils, draw animals, learn to use borders and get to be a student of Tommy Kane, who has been given the title by his students of being the 'Krosshatch King'! I have always wondered how he did his sketches and he was generous to let us in all of his secrets.

Here are some of my daily sketches for the EDM challenge that will hopefully improve my drawing skills of non animate objects. The first photo is of Jutta, for Julia Kay's Portrait Party on Flickr group , in ball point pen:





Wednesday, 14 May 2014

I ♥ drawing in Ball point!

I am quite fascinated by Tommy Kane's work. He's also a nice guy and I like him because he's honest and down to earth.  I admire that in a person.

Anyway, I did his portrait in pen and I bought his book a while ago. It has over 200 pages of his drawings and is great value for money! It is rare to find an art book that has so many pages and all are inspirational.
I was also curious as why he had this damn, nutty squirrel following him so I bought the book to find out!

Here is his book:

I decided to colour in my monkey sketch using coloured pencils. My son suggested that it needed some colour so I took his advice

In Tommy's class we were to draw and paint our kitchen and use cross hatching. I am a lazy cross hatcher and I do not draw structures well at all. Anything square, geometrical or structural is just not my forte but then again I don't practice these things! Here is my lousy homework:

Monday, 12 May 2014

Animal Fun!

Roz Stendhal, taught the 5th week of Sketchbool Skool and boy, is she good!
I'm tempted to break my promise to myself to stop taking online classes because she has a LOT to offer and really does know how to teach.  Cathy Johnson, is another who really knows her stuff. That woman is a walking encyclopaedia, too :)  Well, this year it is easy to say no.I bought my new supplies and pocket money is finished.

This dog was taken from a free reference photo group:

Ballpoint pen in an old page

coloured pencil and charcoal in old book

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Pomegranates- journaling

I am getting to like working with coloured pencils even more and i wanted to try drawing some poms. I should really challenge myself by drawing other fruits and vegetable of different colours as I always seem to go for the red ones.

I am also excited to discover that I can work with a ball point pen! I am doing a drawing every day and it is really helping me get closer on how I want to draw. This self portrait isn't that flattering but when you work with pen you have to work with your mistakes but you CAN correct them! I used a white pen and white paint but the problem with a white pen is that it makes the black ink of a Bic pen turn blue!

This is my 'condescending' look, or 'You want us to do what??' look. I shall explain further in another blog post.

Hey! GREAT NEWS! I was published in Michael and Andrea De Meng's Art Abandonment book, right next to Suze! I am on page 50 . the book should be here soon so I have no idea what piece of mine was published!

Monday, 28 April 2014

Book Page Art - Speak your mind

More pages from my re purposed book. I was kind of agitated ,yesterday so i took it out on my journal page! What was agitating me?  Oh, well, the fact that I often write what I think  but in a tactful way yet, some people just want to hush everything away because it's not good for business. Pfff!

Who is this man? Well it's Mr. Crowley! I have no idea why he popped into my head but he has a very intense and interesting face to draw. An unpleasant and devious man with a flair for being over-dramatic but not one to be silenced.

For Julia Kay's Portrait Party on the left. Biro over paint

This is FB Lisa, who wants a Bulldog for her 50th birthday!

Design Cullan Hudson