Dreams of Butterflies watercolor doodle by katcanpaint.com

Watercolor Stains and butterfly doodles.

Experimenting with a doodle technique in my art journal that I might demo here on the blog:

watercolor and pencil doodle by katcanpaint.com

Practicing a doodle and watercolors experiment. Fuscha pencil + pink and orange paint. And butterflies, of course.

 

I sponge painted watery orange and magenta paint onto my paper, then found butterfly wing shapes in the paint and defined them with purple pencil.  Hair and face came next and I have this pretty little sketch.

 

Dreams of Butterflies watercolor doodle by katcanpaint.com

 

The same process was used here: watery paint was sponge painted onto paper, then I defined shapes with pencil.  I really wanted the hair to cover the entire painted shape, and now it looks like an entire flock of butterflies is inhabiting her curls.

 

I love doodling because it is a very loose and intuitive process, no pressure to make a perfect face or likeness… no pressure to create.  I don’t even think while I am making work like this, it just flows onto the page.  It was a great breather exercise inbetween tutorials.

Speaking of – How to Draw the Easiest Nose and Lips Ever tomorrow!

Same Kat time, same Kat channel.

Too much?

Ah well, I’m a goof ball!

 

<3 Kat

 

Want to see more? You may be interested in:

5X7 girl with a flower crown and white hair by katcanpaint

Mermaid Hair and Flower Crown original acrylic painting 5 x 7

Mermaid Hair and Flower Crown original acrylic painting 5 x 7 : A sneak peek at my messy desk and new painting!

 

5X7 girl with a flower crown and white hair by katcanpaint

 

Just a quick peek of what I’ve been working on this week.  LOOK AT THE MESS THAT IS MY DESK! Holy moly – didn’t I just clean that thing?

 

<3 Kat

Keep in touch! Twitter ::  Etsy :: and Pinterest.

face study on book page collage by KatCanPaint

From the Archives: Can you paint on wood without looking like an Audrey Kawasaki copycat?

I’m revisiting my archives this week, dusting off old paintings and posts to share.

This post is from May of 2009:

Can you paint on wood without looking like an Audrey Kawasaki copycat?

I’ve been painting on canvas and in my art journal for over a year, and I thought I should mix it up. I like the look of wood and paper but both pose a problem for me: Book pages always look like folk art mixed media works, or the collage leaves and uneven messy surface to paint on, and if I draw or paint on wood pieces my girls look like Audrey Kawasaki clones.

Experimenting with art on book pages and wood pieces.

To create a background for this painted portrait, I made a collage of story book pages onto a piece of canvas paper.  (Next time I do this it will be on something sturdy, a hard board panel or wood. Canvas paper is fun to experiment on but its too flimsy for mixed media layers.)

face study on book page collage by KatCanPaint

Face study
Acrylic, dye, and beeswax paints over old book pages

The collage added a lot of bulk and overlapping bits to the background which made it a challenge to get the smooth “licked surface” painterly quality that I like my portraits to have.  Its obviously rough and an imperfect and I love it!

At first I was very judgmental about this background technique, I thought it would look instantly “shabby chic” or scrapbook-y.  Now I want to use book pages for everything:  just look at that lovely yellowing, instant age and depth. 

Her face came out so nice.  Every time I paint I get better: the base / underpainting is in acrylics and her features were detailed with my watercolor-esque beeswax paints. I like these beeswax paints, they are beautifully translucent while having a lot of chroma so they don’t look as flat as using just acrylics.

If you wanted to achieve this look in your paintings the color palette is: mars black, titanium white, cadmium yellow, alizarin crimson, ultramarine blue, light cadmium red, burnt umber, and lots of raw sienna. My underpainting this time was purple instead of the usual raw sienna and it was an interesting and fun way to start.

Luna Moths drawing by KatCanPaint

Luna Moths

pencil on wood

Luna Moths is a sketch on a tiny spare piece of wood left over from a wood-burning kit.  The wood and pencil make me automatically think of Audrey Kawasaki’s work, and that is unfortunate because I think that a lot of people will have that association; still it was a lot of fun to do. If I want to work on wood I will have to be sure my style is clearly defined as my own.  I like the color and texture of wood panels, even more than the book pages, I just need to solve the style dilemma.

It boils down to figuring out the equation, really. What makes this piece, or any, look like another artist’s work? Pretty girl, captivating stare, manga inspired, focus on the face and facial features, focus on tight detailed line work, muted color palette, a lot of wood texture visible, and minimal background?  In this case, it’s a lot of things that could very well be solved just by painting my piece with acrylics.

<3 Kat

You can find me on Twitter ::  Etsy :: and Pinterest.

Love Bird 2009 by KatCanPaint

From the archives: Love Bird * an original mixed media painting

I’ve started cleaning up my archives and I found this post and painting I made in 2009.  It’s been hidden this entire time.

Love Bird * an original mixed media painting

Love Bird 2009 by KatCanPaint

Love Bird
Mixed media: collage and acrylic on Canvas
9″X12″

Love Bird is an original mixed media painting on canvas.  I tried a mixed media collage background but you can’t see it in this scan.  I’m trying to be more free and loose with paint and experimenting with new faces, I love the little fairy bird.

The baby has been keeping me busy this week, I wish I had more paintings finished. There are five sitting around my desk, all waiting to have some attention but I don’t know when I’ll get to them all. I’m a neglectful artist, babies are demanding!

<3 Kat

You can find me on Twitter ::  Etsy :: and Pinterest.

Cloud Cover beautiful girl painting by KatCanPaint

Cloud Cover a mixed media painting from 2008

I’ve spent the last week going through my old painting and blog archives and cleaning things up.  I found this old mixed media painting, Cloud Cover, hiding in a forgotten folder.

I painted this girl in 2008; she’s acrylics, mica, and beeswax, on an oval wood plaque.

 

Cloud Cover beautiful girl painting by KatCanPaint

Cloud Cover 2008

This piece just sort of happened:  I painted the girl with acrylics and built up the background using layers of heavy gloss gel.  The gel medium dries thick and you can mix paint and mica into it, you can spread it like frosting and glue things into it.  I added layers of translucent color and texture in the background with a palette knife and they looks like clouds to me. I painted washes of acrylic and beeswax over top of the clouds saw rainbows and rain in the shapes, so I painted those in.

I really like her face and eyes.  Her eyes are my favorite blue, pthalo blue, bright and ethereal.  I’m glad I found this scan, because I gave this painting away a long time ago.  She’s over 4 years old! I really want to create another version of it and compare the two.

 

<3 Kat

You can find me on Twitter ::  Etsy :: and Pinterest.

Crown of Wings

Crown of Wings * mixed media acrylic painting

Crown of Wings

Crown of Wings

11 x 14

mixed media on canvas

I’m finally finished with this painting: a mix of metallic paints, marker, decorative / scrapbook paper, tissue, beeswax paint, acrylic, watercolor,  colored pencil AND … I’m sure I forgot something in there. She has taken months of painting, layering, planning, deliberating, having no clue what to do next.  Yeah, that’s how I work.  But she’s done! Yay!

<3 Kat

wings detail

butterfly wings and a new painting preview

butterfly wing painting

Stylized butterfly wings are all I’ve wanted to paint lately.  Its easy to get lost in the patterns, color, and repetition.

wings detail

Here is a quick peak of a mixed media painting I’ve been working on.  She has a lot of layers of paint/paper/gel medium/more paint/marker/pens/and paint.  Did I mention paint? You can see the layers of paper and paint on canvas, swirls and loops and flowers, and scrapbook papers layered in there too.

sneak peak Almost done! I just have a few more layers of glazing and detailing before she is ready to be sealed.

<3 Kat

 

Mixed Media on Canvas Work in Progress

11 x 14

mixed media on canvas

unfinished

This piece started out with a color wash on canvas, purples yellow and grey.  I do this before I have any plan for a finished painting- it stops me from staring at a blank canvas, and if I have no other ideas usually getting started painting helps me get into the flow. With out any inspiration or plan, I doodled swirls and roses in marker and pen then collaged flowers from some pretty paper over top. I drew the girl in marker because I really liked the doodles, then painted the first skin tones in acrylic… I think I’m having more fun with doodles and collage. There are several more layers to go!

Check out some other artist’s mixed media works:

<3 Kat

 

Mixed Media Portrait

This piece started out with a mix of blues, purples, and yellow swirled onto canvas. (Aqua/purple/yellow are my favorite colors together.)

I didn’t really have a plan for this canvas first; I hate staring at a blank canvas so I paint a mix of colorful layers onto my canvases and set them aside to paint on later. Later, when I felt like doing something artsy I collaged papers onto the painted background.  I get annoyed with waiting for things to dry so I use a hair dryer to speed along the drying process.

I drew her face with markers, painted in her features with acrylics, and used the hair dryer to dry the layers again.  I doodled on top of the painting with calligraphy pens and markers and acrylic swirls. I really enjoy messing around with multilayer pieces like this in between intense focus super detailed acrylic paintings like The Constant Gardener.

I’m thinking about doing another piece like this as an online painting class.  I liked detailing the process of my mixed media angel painting  in a quick and easy (with bullet points!) painting tutorial. With a couple of process pictures and detailed, easy to follow instructions of the process it would be a fun free painting class.

<3 Kat