Painting forest

I love walking forest, I love watching little changes every day. Changes that are proof of life. Nobody says which ones are good or bad, everything is natural and alive. Walking forest means a kind of therapy for me, therapy of freedom or therapy by freedom.

What would a professional therapist say about the fact that I like to bring a trophy from a walk? I don’t care, but I do so. A small leaf of interesting shape or color is enough, I can use it later as a reference for painting. Actually I prefer trophies that I can use in some way. Trophies like leafs, bark, herbs, fruits, mushrooms, etc. Why to waste all the treasures?

Painting forest is a part of my personal art challenge for this year, see above. Probably not enough for me, so I joined another challenge in early March. It came to me in response how to improve my watercolor. Paint the same topic every day for a long period of time! Do not spend much time over it, do it as quickly as possible. You will gradually relax and your own style should appear. Yes. I want that!

After a month, I am still at the starting line. I painted without reference picture for the first 5 days and it was a disaster! I hope those scary pictures are not the only image of my mind. Having reference photo is much easier, I have something to lean back and focus on painting.

Do you have a favorite?

At the moment, I would like to apologize to all excellent authors, whose photos I devaluated with my quick painting. I promise not to exhibit them! They are quietly hidden in my sketchbook, thin sheets buckled because I didn’t use watercolor paper for this exercise. I hope to improve next month!

Hugs and love,

Ivana

One hand, different styles

When it comes to painting, I am still looking for myself. One and half years of experience ranks me as a pure beginner, so I need to work on basic techniques and test various supplies.

According to the comments on my personal art challenge I agree to see a tendency towards illustrations. I have a lot of ideas, most of which are stopped by lack of skills.

A great example from the past few days is a painting of lantern. Immediately, I imagined a scene from an old fairy tale, which I listened to as a child. The story tells about daily life of beetles that fly with lanterns to bring the light to people at night. Because of audio version I had no pictorial prejudices.

Full of joy, I sketched the basic idea on a scrap paper easily. Then I produced a problem in my head – mainly because of figural drawings. Although I reduced the number of beetles from five to three, the result lacks the poetics and simple lightness of the original sketch. Painted in watercolor with black liner and with the final touch by colored pencils.

Conclusion – I need more practice with figural drawings and courage to do it. My wise inner voice adds – maybe start with simple silhouettes like in the sketch, don’t push yourself into a real figural drawing. They won’t look real anyway.

In the shadow of Campanula

I made this drawing with silhouettes a few years ago by colored pencils only, maybe it looks better than actual beetles with lantern, what do you think?

There are also two of non-figural painting, covering topics of my personal challenge – document and butterfly. In these dark days I couldn’t paint a summer butterfly, so I decided for a night moth, specifically army green moth. I took a reference photo from wikipedia, hopefully it is free to use.

I would appreciate your comments, especially on the figural drawing. Some advice how to combine my lack of skills and experience with my desire to paint all the ideas and imaginations I have?

Thanks for reading and stopping by!

With love and hugs,

Ivana

Food and plant

Just a brief report about progress in my personal art challenge. To my surprise, I paint faster than I can write about it, which is probably another form of progress.

Drawing a plant, I wanted to created sunflower with a human face, kind of dreamy one. Instead, I got a portrait much more realistic than if I had tried it. The intention and the result did not correspond at all.

Sunflower. Watercolor, black liner, Inktense pencils, common colored pencils. Size A4.

Painting food, I wanted to be realistic and hopefully it turned out that way.


I am happy to see that I was able to paint realistic food, but I also find it a bit boring. Not the painting itself, there I still have a lot to learn, but the result – no dynamism or fun inside. I want to believe that such opinion is also part of progress.

Happy days before Holidays!

Ivana

Windows

Nothing to do with Microsoft, just the opening of a second year of personal art challenge. Even made on time, I come to report late.

Since the spring, I had a clear vision of a window, from which a goat looks out over a box with flowers. Specifically, there should be tulips and daffodils. I delayed until all the tulips and daffodils were gone and autumn came. Then I put the window at the top of the new list.

As if I knew, I had a hard time with the goat. Quite satisfied with the sketch, I tried to add more colors and apply a white gel pen, which I just bought. And suddenly a completely different animal appeared in the window!

The first goat may be a little tough in its expression, but the other is as mild as a lamb. Is it still a goat?


Originally, I sketched the window itself – small in size, colored by ink pencils. Nothing special until I decided to create a seamless pattern from it. Looks interesting, what do you say?


Hope you have a pleasant time, looking forward to the holidays!

Love and hugs,

Ivana

Done!

A year ago, I challenged myself to regularly draw or paint a picture every week according to predetermined list of topics. Any technique allowed. Being inspired by the inktober event, I wished to improve my skills on regular basis.

So I put down 52 topics to be processed in any order, which really helped. Sometimes I easily painted even more pictures on a selected topic, sometimes I had to force myself, which was pretty obvious from the result. Step by step, week by week, 52 artworks are done.

Big thanks to the friends, who supported me along the way! At the moment, I am grateful for all the support as well as I am proud to have completed my challenge. It doesn’t mean that I am proud of each of the artworks. That’s why I started to get another 52 topics. Almost at the end of the list!

I decided to share the results of my challenge, even there are so many. When I see them together, I see that I have no style of my own. So far, I am still trying different things and looking for what suits me best. One thing seems to be obvious. Using black contour line makes me more confident, whether I then use colored pencils, watercolor or ink pencils.

Perhaps next challenge will help to discover other facts or feelings that will lead to my own style. Your comments or recommendations on this matter are welcome!

With love and hugs,

Ivana

Wrapped well

Thank you for all the encouragement! It made me hungry to paint another topic from my 52 challenges earlier.

And because Christmas is just around the corner, I chose the topic “ribbon”. I got the result after about five hours, as I had never painted any ribbon before. That’s why it became part of my challenge 🙂

Hope you will like the gift, hidden inside. Let your imagination fly and leave me a comment on what you see under the ribbon.

With love and hugs,

Ivana

Greenery

I’m not a big fan of Christmas madness but I like greenery in all its forms. And today’s walk brought me the inspiration of a green wreath.

OK, I added little decorations when Christmas is around the corner 🙂

To be honest, this is only the second attempt to paint a wreath in my life. Maybe that’s why the wreath belongs to the items I included into my personal art challenge. Did I tell you about it?

Recently I had a birthday (happy Scorpio) and I gave myself the artistic challenge as a gift. Actually, I was inspired by the Inktober event, held annually on the DeviantArt platform.

In the original version, only ink is used, and one specific theme is announced for each day of October. My version has softer rules, but is designed for the whole year. Until next birthday.

I put down 52 creative challenges that can be processed by any technique in any order. But in the spirit of one topic per week in the hope that regular exercise will improve my so called artistic skills.

So far I have painted 3 topics on t-shirts, and I chose the wreath for this week. Simple watercolor, but I enjoyed the painting. I’m happy to see movement inside, or am I wrong?

And I’m double happy to share my little greenery with you. Hopefully it brings a smile to your face.

Love, Ivana

Getting ripe!

To better understand my excitement you have to know, that my living space is tiny. I have neither a garden nor a balcony, but I decided to grow tomatoes on windowsill.

Because of zero experience, I investigated suitable varieties on internet. I chose for two with feminine names, both starting with V. I would like to think that V meant victory, but it was V like Venus and Vilma.

I spent my time with them from seeds, trying to grow strong plants and kill permanent doubts.

I have already harvested a few of gold Venus fruits. They were extremely small but yummy! And there are still many of them on plants, waiting for the right size and color.

Vilma should be slightly bigger and red, see the picture above. I couldn’t wait to taste and check the redness every minute. Approaching the goal, my impatience and salivation rate increases.

It’s too early for evaluation, but it seems to be clear that efficiency of growing tomatoes on windowsill isn’t high. On the other hand it brought me adventure of growing and harvesting yummy fruits, even small in numbers.

Call me crazy, but I think I will repeat it next year again! Your experience and recommendations for a gardener without garden are welcome.

With love and humility,

Ivana

Happy birthday, Hanka!

The post and the picture are dedicated to my friend Hanka, who celebrated her birthday by successful participation in the Prague Half Marathon few days ago. I have a strong respect for endurance and vitality, which she runs in her running and living as well.

Hanka, I wish you all the best for your birthday! You are entering the year 7 in your life path, so you can expect an important crossroad ahead. You will probably meet a number of opportunities for change, but it’s up to you to decide and accept. I feel a great challenge on the field of work, where change could bring a significant growth.

Seven is also the number of truth. Unfortunately, the truth is often revealed by breaking of myths under which it was long time hidden. It can hurt, but for a healthy future, the truth is a more stable base than a beautiful myth. I believe, you know the core of that truth. After you discover the whole story, you will move forward. And moving forward is another key feature of the seven.

Seven is touching our heart and soul. If it’s done with honesty and open mind, the Universe offers all we need for success and happiness. The seven wants us to stop sticking to old patterns and prejudices, and start opening to the offered gifts. And there are plenty of them!

With love, Ivana

Before getting power

Almost everyone knows the story about Phoenix, who has risen from his own ashes. There are many images of this fascinating creature, always full of gold and fire. I have always admired the power and courage hidden in them as I have always doubted that I would be able to do such a thing.

Trying to do so, I was brought to the thoughts of what was happening just before the Phoenix burnt and was born again. How much he was afraid when the hot Inferno flames flashed around him?

And the wisdom, born from my picture, is quite similar to the many that we know from movies and books. Being afraid is not a reason for shame. Being afraid doesn’t mean you cannot achieve a big goal. You may be afraid but you have to go on to finish what has been started either by you or by the universe.

Hopefully my picture helps me to take the fear into my hand and enter the rebirth flames together. And maybe it also helps some of you 😃

With love, Ivana