a woman in profile, painted in watercolor, sitting at a table in a cafe, sipping tea

3 Group Art Activities for a Gathering of Friends and Family

First Sip 5 x 8.5 Watercolor on paper (sold) Group Art Activities for Your Next Gathering When you host a gathering of friends and family, group art activities create fine memories and a lot of giggles. You don’t have to corral every attendee into the fun, but being prepared with props and a few inexpensive supplies might help lure the timid to the dinner/art table. Below you’ll find 3 art activities for a gathering of friends and family that won’t break the bank, or require seasoned art-making-skills. Dinner Table Caricature Portraits – Simple, Fun Art and Giggles with Friends and Family Dinner Table …[Continue reading]

gelli print monotype with a girl holding a fox on her lap

Gelli Plate Print Backgrounds for Trace Monotypes

The Woolgratherer’s Fox 6×6 gelli plate and trace monotype with colored pencil (see the process photos below) Gelli Plate Print Abstracts Gelli Plate Prints and Monotype prints are some of the most accessible types of printmaking to try if you’re curious about making prints at home. You don’t need a printing press, or sharp carving tools, or even printmaking ink. The popularity of gelli plates, and all of their instructional videos have opened up monotype and monoprint method options to beginners worldwide. You can make Gelli Prints with stamping ink, patterned stencils magazine transfers, letters, and slow-dry acrylic paint. I’ve experimented with layers …[Continue reading]

a drypoint etching from plexiglass

Drypoint Print on Plexiglass – Using Inexpensive Plastic for Intaglio Printmaking

Coffee and Roses 5.5 x 4.25 Drypoint on Gray Rives BFK paper with watercolor Drypoint on Plexiglass Want to know how to make a drypoint on plexiglass? This little drypoint print (above) was an experiment with inexpensive plastic plate material, instead of the traditional copper plates used in drypoint printmaking. In recent years, I’ve done drypoint etchings and engravings on clear plexiglass plates. The line work can be hard to see while drawing into the plastic with the scribe or needle. I bought a sheet of opaque black plexiglass on amazon to see if my mark-making would be more evident on the darker …[Continue reading]

Watercolor of a young woman sleeping in a black camisole on yellow sheets

5 Watercolor Techniques to Try as a Beginner

Yellow Sheets 6×9 Watercolor (sold) is an example of a wet-into-wet watercolor technique Watercolor Techniques for Beginners, or Returning Artists After a Long Hiatus (Welcome Back) 🎨 Here are 5 watercolor techniques to try if you’re a beginner painter, or you’re rounding the bend to return to your art. As a previously absent watercolor painter myself, I’m welcoming you with pompoms and cheerleading. You’ve got this! Each watercolor technique in this post has an example painting where the results of the method can be reviewed. Every description has an accompanying video tutorial by an assortment of talented youtube artists to show you exactly …[Continue reading]

a collagraph portrait print of a man in a bed sleeping with a cat hovering over him

Collagraph Print Portraits of People and Pets – and a Studio Sale

Breakfast Alarm 7×7 Collagraph with colored pencil on Arches paper How to Make a Collagraph Portrait Want a creative project to try at your kitchen table? Here’s how to make a collagraph print portrait, step by step. The collagraph examples in this post were all made from scrap mat board. Mat board is also known as mount board in England and passe-partout in France. You’ll find process photos, resource links and video tutorials to make a collagraph portrait below – just scroll on down. With a reference photo of your model, and an exacto blade knife (I like this cool mini-swivel cutter), you …[Continue reading]

a greyhound lounging asleep on a big arm chair

Gift Ideas for Watercolor Artists

Greyhound Lounger, watercolor (sold) What Gifts do Watercolor Artists Wish For? How do you know what to gift to a watercolor artist? Do beginner painters prefer different art supplies and art-themed gifts compared to more seasoned watercolor artists? (I don’t think so.) We artists love a slow inspection of every single aisle in an art supply store. Just the same as a quilter gets inspired by the latest prints in a fabric shop, or a stitcher swoons at the display of this season’s newest colors of embroidery floss. But if you’re not an artist, how do you get gift ideas for watercolor artists? …[Continue reading]

pet portraits in watercolor

Watercolor Portraits of Pets

Flower Chewer – watercolor on paper (sold) First, an Introduction to Jack Before we dive into painting watercolor portraits of pets, let me introduce you to our model, Jack. He chews flowers. Even if you’ve given him little pots of grass, and put your flowers up high, out of reach, he will find a way to get to them. I’ve witnessed Jack launching down a hallway to liftoff towards a fireplace mantle bedecked with a bouquet. The mantle was too narrow to land on, so he swiped – mid-air, spider man style – at the vase of flowers. He brought the vase and …[Continue reading]