“Sugar Skull”

#lovefallart, sugar skull#LoveFallArt

Every time I squeeze out a watercolor painting I just have to say I am amazed. I love how this turned out. And I don’t want to say that I’m amazed along the lines of conceit. I’m just amazed that I can actually pull something like this off. I really do feel like my hand is being guided not by my own will.

I’d been watching amazing YouTube speed paintings by a few talented artists lately and I wanted to do something similar. I also wanted to keep going with the #lovefallart movement with this painting so thought doing a sugar skull makeup painting would work really well.

The talented artists I’m currently inspired by include:

If you have any interest in portrait watercolor paintings, be sure to check them out. I particularly love their approach with bright colors, splatters and running paint drips. I don’t have near the experience they do. Honestly this is really my first watercolor portrait painting I’ve ever done. If I can get half as good as them I’d be feeling pretty accomplished.

This goes back to my previous post, however, where I talk about using creativity to get more of it – essentially practice, practice, practice.

This was a pure joy to work on, however. I think it took me roughly three hours to complete, and I think this is going to be one my favorite entries in my art journal so far.

Not very many materials used for this.

IMG_9795I referenced a woman’s image on the web and several different images of sugar skull makeup, flowers, leaves and flower “crowns” to put this together. I thought in keeping with #lovefallart that a crown made of autumn leaves and flowers would work really well for this as opposed to the usual rose crowns you see with sugar skull makeup. I did include a rose, of course, but added other foliage to make it more autumn-y.

I gessoed a page in my Canson and made sure the page was good and flat before I began any work on it. I did this by weighing the page down under several pads of drawing paper for a couple days (I was working during the week, anyhow, so really couldn’t get to it until Saturday.)

I drew a light outline of my desired image and then set to work with the painting. I have actual progress photos to share, as well. I was texting them to a friend while I worked on it. It’s really amazing how alien a painting looks at its infant stages.

IMG_9784   IMG_9785   IMG_9786

I used two different types of watercolor paint: Grumbacher Academy and Kuretake Gambi. I used my heat tool occasionally to dry the paint so I could add more details / layers on top without having it all run together.When I was very close to finished, I dried the image thoroughly and then filled in some minute details with my Prismacolor Premiere colored pencil, and also used my Sharpie pen and my white Uni-ball Signo pen.

IMG_9796I found that the Kuretake Gambi watercolor seems to have a waxy finish to it when it’s dry, as I was having a bit of a challenge going over the top of it with my Prismacolors. Interesting thing to note for future painting endeavors.

One of theses days it would be great to have the skills to do those minute details all with watercolor alone.

Ultimately very pleased with how this turned out, though. So glad I challenged myself with this.

Hope you enjoyed the layout. Leave a comment below or like the page and share with your friends. :) Thanks for reading!

List of materials:

Canson Mixed Media sketchbook
Grumbacher Academy watercolors
Kuretake Gambi watercolors
Sharpie Pen
Prismacolor Premiere colored pencils
Uni-ball Signo pen

4 thoughts on ““Sugar Skull”

  1. I loved it & thank you for writing out the details. It helps us begin her’s and I realize if you’re reading all of your post that I’m stop being scared I’m a step out there and stop warring about making mistakes I’m just gonna go for it

    Liked by 1 person

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