As we begin the holiday season, you are likely planning out your season calendar of errands, family events, and work projects. On a related note, I decided to paint up the favorite cocktails in my home.
Disclaimer: I have never wanted to try a bloody mary, but one of my roommates is a big fan so it is included despite my personal opinions on the drink.
If anyone should have custom paintings of their cats, it’s my roommates. The two affectionately refer to their cats as their kids and miss them during two day trips. The above is of our girl Cassie, more commonly known as Puddy. I did a quick sketch of her one afternoon as she was posing by me. This sketch snowballed into two watercolor pet portraits.
This little guy was harder to sketch, too fidgety. Though I did most of the pieces looking at the cats live, I took photos as well. Here are the references of Puddy and Ollie,
Puddy responded well to her sketch, as you see below.
I guess my roommates liked them because they framed them up and hung them right over their bed.
Edit/Update 11/15: I was saddened by the news of the recent attacks in Paris. My heart goes out to France. I feel so lucky that all my French friends and their families and loved ones are safe.
This is my first time doing an official composition kind of painting. It’s far from perfect but I’m glad I did it. I learned a lot and it was an interesting sense of accomplishment. I did work off a photo – a photo I took while in Paris last December with the original intention of focusing on the teal bridge and the beige buildings. I moved some buildings and changed some colors but I tried to keep the same inspirational aspects of my original photo in the painting.
Rather than go for a realistic, copy-cat depiction of the scene, I attempted a more line-and-wash, illustrative kind of look. I can see where some parts of the painting are not a consistent style to other parts, like I said, my first attempt. I also lost some of my proportions when I copying my practice sketches to the large watercolor paper.
Here it is in the mat before framing. The mat was a touch small and I will probably change it for one about half as wide. (The inside of the mat was about 16×20, I believe.) I chose a simple, pretty natural wood with white distressed/washed frame that I unfortunately did not take a photo of and my mother has it hung above her couch like the supportive moms always do.
My close friend has her birthday only a few days after mine so we always celebrate together. We have a ‘handmade cards only’ rule which evolved naturally. Her card to me was adorable with stuck on pearls and kitty cats all over the envelope. My card was not actually a card. It was meant to be but resizing my sketch became too much trouble so it ended up an odd sized watercolor gift paper thing haha. (Check out my pretty new bedding from my birthday, just showcasing that again)
To do the drawing, I consulted a vintage “fashion illustration” workbook series that was either my mother’s or my grandmother’s first. As usual, my original plan was not the look I ended up with at all. I was considering a more abstract, high fashion sketch style but as I was practicing the forms, I had fun and landed on this cutesy figures look.
Though “my” hair color didn’t turn out ashy or dark enough, I was happy with how the red of “my friend’s hair” turned out. She has this phenomenal red-auburn, thick head of hair so I wanted it to be an important part of the piece. As a last detail, I included a lily in “my” hand to represent my friend’s baby, who was too difficult to draw but is an essential member of our friend group now, (the darling’s name is Lily.) The saying is not as sentimental as it comes off but rather an allusion to a joke. But take it as a sweet saying if you’d like!
Someone very important to me had a birthday a few weeks back. I went with the coffee theme since we shared many a morning cup this summer and it was a fun ritual to share between us. I already miss the extra cup that was her.
I did some quick planning sketches before layout it out on some small watercolor paper. I did light penciling (seen some in the photo below) and then inked over with a new, fine point (xs) Faber Castell artist pen. The watercolor washes were all that remained. I made the mint color (a favorite of hers) for the cup using Lemon Yellow, Cerulean Blue, and white.