Friday, April 30, 2010

Pioneer Boots Experiment

I've been busy with illustration projects, which is definitely good in this economy. Right now I'm working on a book about Ogres which has been lots of fun. But because of such quick deadlines for everything, I have doing everything digitally. I miss my paint. I've been wanting to experiment with some different things for a while, but haven't had the chance. So when a friend asked me if I could draw a picture of some pioneer boots for a church activity, I figured this was the perfect chance.

I sketched out the boots and then scanned them and printed them out on Arches 80 lb hotpress watercolor paper. I have a regular sized hp inkjet printer, so the ink will bleed if it gets wet. So first I sprayed the printout thoroughly with fixitif. After that dried, I painted over the picture with Matte Medium. This turned the drawing into a dark blue thick outline, but the ink didn't run. Next I painted the boots with watercolor, and finally I finished the whole thing up with pastel pencils.

The things I discovered: First, that I can successfully print out a drawing and paint over it without the drawing bleeding into a big blob. Second, that this technique makes dark thick outlines, so it's not as successful with watercolor unless I want this certain look. But it would work well with an opaque acrylic painting. Third, I like the blue undertones the ink gives the painting. Fourth, Matte Medium makes an awesome texture!! (Too bad you can't see it very well). I love it. I need to work more with texture. Fifth, someday I will own a large format printer with waterproof ink so I can do wicked awesome paintings tout les jours. That was long. That's all.


Will Strong said...

I'd say that it's a pretty successful experiment. I do something similar with gouache and photoshop. I love mixed digital and physical media.

TheIcePixy said...

That's awesome! I've only painted on prints of photos. My Dad has a nice Epson photo printer and so for a college project I printed a bunch of photos to about 18X20 on some special Epson paper called 'watercolor' paper that has a nice texture. Then I used acrylic paint to paint in fantasy elements into the photos. Then glazed it to pull it all together. It was fun and scary all at the same time, but I managed to get some good pieces out of it. The thing is, I really haven't done it since college. I ought to do some more.

Oh, yeah, I really like how your boots turned out. :}

Bethany and Thomas said...

How fascinating your work is! It is fun that you can try new things and new mediums and mix things up a bit!

Jack Foster said...

That's so cool all the different techniques. Thanks for sharing. I love your blog Shawna! You have a new follower.

Brandon Carson said...

I like this and i will share to this same with my friends.