I was intending to do the Strathmore series last year, but got sidetracked. Fortunately, I was still on their mailing list, and signed up to do the new series this year. This workshop is called "Doodles Unlimited", taught by Traci Bautista, and is about using mixed media. for the first lesson, Traci basically encouraged us to use every art product we own on a nice base of fancy Strathmore watercolor paper (did I mention Strathmore is sponsoring this free workshop). I own a lot of different media, and I didn't feel like using all of them, but I will tell you what I did use, and what I learned in the process. I might still do more to this, but I just got tired of looking at it.
Thwarted in my painting, I went on to the next step, which was adding subtle color and texture with alcohol markers. I was still worried about the colorwash running, so I didn't use my good Copics, I whipped out my Bics. I have to admit, I was not impressed with Traci's big graphic flowers, so I went my own way with geometric doodling. I wasn't liking it - it was just getting cluttered, not pretty, and I didn't see how there was going to be a focal point to it. I looked out the widow to the trees in my back yard, and decided that I needed a tree on my painting, so I went back to my acrylic paints, figuring that the colorwash couldn't do too much to brown and black, and started making branches. I I made the thinner branches with the markers and also with pens.
It is way too busy - I needed more paint in the background, and a lot less doodling. a little white highlighting would be good, too, but seriously - I am so sick of looking at those branches it isn't funny.
I added white, in the form of snow (white gel pen, correction fluid, and paint). I thought it would add more contrast. I'm not convinced that it helped. I am thinking about splattering white droplets to create a snowstorm, but part of me thinks that it is a destructive impulse, and not something that will really improve the piece.