The images aren’t pretty, but the colors certainly are.
Fountain Pen Inks
My autumn watercolor palette has joined forces with a
to form a compact kit for writing and doodling any time space is limited or travel is necessary. The notebook band holds everything securely so I can grab the kit on the go. It also keeps the journal closed so the pages do not get damaged and bits I’ve tucked between pages stay put. However, if I want to play things extra safe, a clear, plastic zipper bag that formerly held a pair of new pillowcases, is the perfect size for the whole caboodle. Another option is to place the waterbrush in a zip lock bag so that even under pressure, no water leaks where it isn’t welcome.
The beauty of this kit is that it holds enough tools for a variety of activities from writing to drawing to painting and all sorts of doodles in between. I do like to be prepared. Do you carry a kit and, if so, what goes in it?
With eight of the paints from my newest watercolor palette, I was able to mix some muted colors that reminded me of San Juan streets at dusk. This kit holds twelve pans, takes up very little space, and travels well. It won’t hold all of my favorite colors, but a small box of extras is always an option. Painting in a café with a waterbrush, a Stillman & Birn sketchbook and this little kit is all it takes to make me a happy camper. Yeah, I’m easy.
This setup includes a Pilot Prera filled with Noodler’s Black, a Kuretake waterbrush, Stillman & Birn Zeta Sketchbook and a metal watercolor box containing
Banish the world’s woes for a few minutes with an upbeat journal entry and a splash of brilliant color. Consider it a restorative and no doubt you deserve one.
This month orange and turquoise have been happy distractions from the turmoil outside my sphere of influence. Diamine Aqua Blue in the Platinum Century Chartres Blue broad nib and J. Herbin Indien Orange in the Platinum #3776 music nib along with some hits of Daniel Smith Permanent Orange watercolor made this happy page.
Not an artist? Me either. But anyone can decorate with colorful doodles or fill in different elements like a kid with a coloring book. In this case, coloring outside the lines is totally acceptable – even desirable.
If you aren’t ready to create a mini-masterpiece, go abstract. Put down some shapes and lines with a waterproof ink. Then fill it in with markers or paint. Enjoying a time out at your local bistro? Even black coffee applied with a spoon, straw or toothpick will do in a pinch. Sometimes let it get away from you with drips and spatters that create unexpected results. Who says art must be tidy? It is whatever you make it.
The only requirement is that the paper will withstand your choice of tools. Below I’ve used Stillman & Birn Sketchbooks and Strathmore Windpower Sketch. The former is high quality while the latter is inexpensive. You can tear out the pages of the Strathmore if the results don’t meet expectations. However, it can be useful to retain disappointing entries to appreciate your progress and you will progress. Just keep at it. The more often you are creative, the better you will get at it. Promise!
Pens, inks and other treats…
After days of tinkering, the bead inspired palette has come together in two forms. The watercolor version was easier to assemble because adding more water makes getting a close match simple. The ink version took forever as my collection lacks some of the colors that would work best. If I were to put together a palette from a single ink maker, it would be J. Herbin. Their softer colors suit the true colors of the beads quite well.
Caveat regarding the images. The ink photo lacks the vibrancy and clear colors of the swatches on my desk. Look elsewhere for better accuracy.
Look what came in the mail today.
File this under “good things that come in small packages.” It’s a silver Altoids sized box with 18 paint wells and a tiny, size 3 travel brush. It won’t get filled until my order of Daniel Smith Hansa Yellow Light and Permanent Orange arrives. However, the beads will be the inspiration for the palette and I can work on selecting the 16 additional colors in the interim.
Given the small mixing area, I will either use paint straight from the wells or let it mix on the paper. Both methods produce vibrant colors and intriguing effects.
Thank you so much, Karen, for the cute, little box and the super fast shipping. Now to work on colors that resemble those beads. A good challenge and total fun for a color lover like me.
Oh, if you are interested in a watercolor palette from Karen, search eBay under “small paint tin” or click this link to her listings.