Trying New Things

White Mandala4 on Blue Dots-for web

It started with an idea to practice hand lettering by making pretty signs with the names of my favorite hymns. In the background of one of those attempts, I tried to draw a mandala freehand with no compass or ruler, which obviously went terribly.

That got me started intentionally practicing mandalas – and here we are. I can combine them digitally with some watercolors I’ve done, and I really like the results.

“Same Old Lang Syne”: Top Five Christmas Song #2

Today, I bring you song number 2:

“Same Old Lang Syne”, 1980, by Dan Fogelberg

Same oldUntil I started researching for information on this song, I thought it was called “Toast to Innocence ”  But it’s not.  It’s called Same Old Lang Syne.  If you can’t remember it, google it to listen and then the images above will make a lot more sense.

I drew this one in ink, scanned it, and colored it in Photoshop.  I’ve decided that Sketchbook is best for me when I’m drawing digitally from the get-go, but if I drew something in real ink and need to paint it, it’s better for me to use Photoshop.

One more song to come.  Thanks for reading along.

You forgot cranberries, too? Top Five Christmas Songs #5

I love Christmas songs, perhaps more than a normal person.  In 2001, our local lite rock station started playing Christmas music on November 1st, and I didn’t change the dial until New Years’ Day.  I teach a weekly Bible study for children, and we start working Christmas songs into our song times in September because I’m in charge and I can.

So, this year, for the first year of my illustration blog, I have picked my top five Christmas songs that I wanted to illustrate, but I’ve waited until we were deep into the Christmas season to share because I know that most people don’t want Jingle Bells stuck in their heads for 3 months.

They are not necessarily my top five favorite Christmas songs ever, but they are songs I sing along to in the car and conjured up some fun images.

So, for installment #1: “Christmas Wrapping”, 1981, by the Waitresses. (Or, you may know it as “the one where she has a crummy year and wants to skip Christmas until she meets up with a guy she likes when she goes to the store for cranberries on Christmas Eve.” Remember that one?)

Christmas Wrapping 4

The best part of this song is that you kind of forget it exists until Christmas each year so it doesn’t wear itself out.

I hand drew almost everything with ink and Prismacolors.  This was my first time coloring twinkly lights, and I rather like them.  I added a few backgrounds digitally, and this was my first time to use a panorama photo program to combine two scanned images.  In the past I have intentionally kept my art small enough to fit on the scanner.  Within Photoshop Elements 9, there is a feature called Photomerge Panorama, and it was a breeze to use.

Check back in a few days for installment #2.  There is more to come…