For my first blog post of 2018, I decided to review the iskn slate 2+.
I was very lucky to receive one as a Christmas gift.
I would like to begin by saying Happy New Year and wish you good health and happiness for 2018.
Now, the reason I wanted to try the Slate, was that I thought it looked a good way to have your sketches saved directly from your paper to the computer. Normally when I want to put a sketch on social media or print it etc. I spend considerable time waiting for good light for photographing my work and then setting the white balance etc. The slate skips all that need for photographing your sketch and has the added benefit of creating a video of your sketch.
Of course you can do this by drawing on a touch screen. However, I have never felt at ease drawing on a screen and the slate lets you have that natural feel of sketching with your own pen or pencil.
The slate is the right size for an A5 sketchbook. I do sketch in A5 and it is fine. However an A4 version would be great…
I have lost count of the number of times people have said to me, "I wish I could paint more freely". I remember as a beginner (and still now) looking at very loose and expressive artworks and wishing I had the confidence to paint in what seemed to be such an effortless way. I have found that as with all things, the best way to achieve this is to practice, practice and practice.
Having said that, I thought it would be useful to put together a few tips to get you working more loosely. I have also created a video to go alongside this blog.
Tips for painting more freely:-
1. Sketch every day, keep sketches quick and avoid using an eraser. Sketching in ink is perfect for freeing up your drawing. Don't forget, your sketchbook is for you and isn't to be judged. You are learning, give yourself permission to make mistakes!
2. Draw and paint at an easel standing up. This gives you room to move. Draw with your whole arm and move from the shoulder, NOT JUST the wrist.
3. Use a B…
A couple of weeks ago I was tempted to buy a set of Derwent Artbars. The shop display had a fantastic selection of colours and I was also attracted by the description that recommended them for "mark making and texture".
I bought the set of 24 and used them for the first time whilst filming for YouTube (linked below). I tried the various techniques of layering, blending, scraping back, drawing and using with water. You will see in the video that I had difficulty blending the colours on the paper initially. I realised that this was because they needed warming up and the more you blended with your finger the easier it became. As someone who always has cold hands, I thought that this was a very labour intensive way of painting!
Later I decided to have a go at a more finished piece of artwork and created the figure painting below. This had many layers and lots of blending. Instead of relying on my cold hands to warm the colours on the paper, I used the hairdryer to soften them a …