oh no what is this: underpriced, undervalued & over it: attitudes towards art & commissions -
There is a really problematic culture of artists underpricing their commissions online - though I’m sure this practice extends towards the ‘real world’. A fun fact before we start: the internet is actually part of the ‘real world’. If you don’t think that industry artists are…
Totally forgot that my flight to Taipei is already tomorrow. Aleyn and I will be there. I’m a little worried because I’m pausing a mound of work for a couple of days… Sort of not ready yet. :( Here’s a WIP of something I’m currently working on.
Reposting this on Tumblr from my defunct blog because people have been looking for it! :)
Sometime last year, Times Trading gave me a set of Derwent Inktense Ink Blocks for review and for my workshop sampling. Inktense blocks are made of solidified ink, not watercolor, which means it’s permanent and rich in pigment, great for multiple applications and wet-on-wet. It’s a very versatile medium which you can use on paper and cloth surfaces.
This is what it looks like inside the tin box. 12 heavily pigmented blocks ready for your consumption.
Here’s my work area. No need for so additional stuff. All you need are brushes (I’m using Pebeo here), a palette, your paper to draw on, a cup of water, tissue, and your Inktense Blocks set. Let’s go under the cut to read my comments about this wonderful art medium.
Derwent Inktense can be used in 3 different ways:
1) Like a crayon
This is the most common way to use water-soluble blocks. You can see that unlike watercolor pencils, Inktense blocks fully dilute with water, it doesn’t leave any scratch or crayon marks unless you intend them to.
2) Chinese painting style
Second is the Chinese painting style: using the blocks like ink blocks and stroking it on your palette with water. Inktense blocks dilute to an almost same consistency as watercolor.
3) Like a pan set
Third is by using the blocks as your actual paint pan set like what I’m doing above. Some people will say, “that’s wrong!” I say, do whatever method you can to produce good work. The nice thing about this method is that your brush holds less water so the pigments transferred to the brush are more intense.
One of the things that I first noticed is that the bleeding is very good. You can see that it doesn’t crackle. It flawlessly merges with other wet areas. One of the main difference between ink and watercolor is that ink is heavily pigmented so you don’t need to use to a lot to get an intense color. One of my students previously bought a Derwent Inktense set before and she used the sticks as hair dye and the colors really show up even on almost-black hair. That’s how heavily pigmented it is!
Inktense pigments are rich. Most of the sticks in the set dilute easily, although I noticed that Yellow Ochre is a chore to melt. Perhaps the granules are more dense. If you notice from the photo below, there are blotches on the hair and they’re quite difficult to even out compared to other colors. But other than that, I have no qualms about this set. I love using it!
Another difference from watercolor is that inks are permanent. You can lift colors from a wet layer without lifting paint from the dry layer. For watercolor, lifting wet paint on a previously painted surface can also lift the lower layer. This is one of the reasons why ink is popular in illustration and comic book coloring. It’s easier to create solid colors; the opacity is thinner, making it is easier to approximate or control.
In a nutshell, inks are very fluid and they’re ideal for Chinese style painting and general illustration work. If you have rice paper you can use Derwent Inktense to mimic Chinese style paintings. You can create fine dry brush strokes as well as wonderful bleeds. Here’s a page from Chao Shao-An’s postcard book given to me by Irene.
Derwent Inktense Blocks can be bought in National Bookstore or the Times Trading shop in Binondo, Manila.
Here is my finished work:
(Separate Tumblr page for the finished image) Thanks for reading! :)
The eye (substituted with a dot) still looks funny. Hehe… I tried. 😓 Would like to make bigger pieces but I left my plywood (for stretching) at the workshop studio.
Painted on the tiny lineart. 🎨
A4 Pad (of 109 Tumblr entries) - jeline_catacutan
A5 Pad (of 148 Instagram entries) – abbeysy
Winners were picked randomly by a representative. Congratulations to the winners! Please email your shipping address to firstname.lastname@example.org. Hope you enjoy your sketchpads! By the way, the pads will be available at National Bookstore by the end of June 2013, according to Times Trading, Derwent’s exclusive distributor in the Philippines. Thanks to all who joined! Here’s to more arts and crafts giveaways in the future. :)
Lineart on a tiny sheet of paper. 😯💐 I think it’s only 5x5”. Maximizing spare cut watercolor papers.
Asked my sister @chuaveronica to pose for me. Wonder if I can finish it… When I see something like this (difficult), I just want to eat. 😓
alanisavenilla asked: What do you mean you're not a blogger anymore? :O :(
Hi! I stopped blogging a few months back (I closed quietgirl.net) because I didn’t have time to write entries anymore and I just wanted to focus on drawing stuff. Right now I just call it tumblring (or tumbling?) Haha… I just post images and maybe just a few comments/reviews on art materials. I always understood blogging as writing articles and narratives about your experiences and sharing them to people. I think it takes a lot of effort to create quality content in this sense so I just stick to maintaining a tumblr, draw more and talk less. (Though I still ramble a lot sometimes). :)
melyndachua asked: Hi I just want to ask what is the best brand of watercolor to use?
Hi! :) I think that the ‘best’ brand depends on the user’s preference. All this time I’ve been using Prang. It’s a scholastic-level set so it’s really cheap but it works great for me. But if a student wants to upgrade to an artist-level one, I usually recommend Windsor and Newton (bec it’s available here in Manila). As long as it’s artist-grade, you can expect top quality results from the paint. Some paints respond differently, some are more opaque, some diffuse differently on paper, and so on. I haven’t tried artist-level paints apart from Talens and W&N. Some of the famous ones are Schmincke, LeFranc, Daniel Smith, Daler Rowney, Talens, W&N. Some users prefer how a certain brand responds over the other but it doesn’t mean it’s inferior or superior. And these little nuances between brands, you’ll only get to notice them when you’ve been painting for some time already. So if you’re starting, I suggest getting a scholastic set, try it for a year and then upgrade to an artist-level. (But of course if you’ve got money for artist-level sets, then it won’t hurt to buy.) :) I know I didn’t answer your Q directly but you’ll only figure out the best paint for you once you start testing them or reading comparative brand reviews online.
Times Trading got me Derwent sketchpads to review and give away. Yey!
This is called Derwent Academy Sketching Paper. It’s an entry-level sketchpad ideal for sketching and practice work for students and professionals. Please note that this is an academic/scholastic-level paper so it doesn’t compare to artist-level (or high-end) pads but its quality is great for the price that it offers.
What I like is that it comes in smaller sizes. If you are the type who likes to bring a pad outside, the smaller A4 and A5 ones would be great. Plus it’s ring-bound! I like ring bound sketchpads better. You get to maximize the space and the paper doesn’t come off unless you forcefully pull it out.
Second, I love the paper texture. It has shallow teeth, which helps graphite adhere to paper, making your tones richer. It’s acid free too so you won’t have to worry about your paper rotting fast or yellowing out in the long run. 110gsm is a good amount of thickness for sketching. That’s a little thicker than bond/copy paper. If you draw dark in front, it won’t be seen easily on its back side (unless you use a blotting pen). The only qualm I have is erasing. I like using dark pencil for sketching like 3B and 5B. Even after sketching mid-tones with an HB lead, some of the pencil marks didn’t want to come off. You might want to use a kneaded eraser for this one but it still doesn’t erase everything compared to other pads I’ve used. Although I’m not the type who gets disturbed when I see erased pencil marks, I think other people take this factor to heart.
Will I buy this pad for myself? Yes!—if I’m looking for a cheap pad with good paper quality with the right amount of leaves, I’ll definitely go for this one! The best thing I like about it is that it comes in portable sizes and it doesn’t cost much. Again, please note that this is an academic pad. If you are looking for high-end paper, Derwent has Artist-level sketch pads ideal for professional work. You can buy this sketchpad locally at Times Trading, 525 Quintin Paredes St., (Binondo) Manila. You can contact them at 242-5741 to 50 in case you want to have items delivered to you. They also carry most of Derwent’s materials.
*A3: Php 340.00
*A4: Php 225.00
*A5: Php 115.00
*Prices may change without prior notice.
Also used pens and markers for it. Works great with it!
I’m giving away 2 sketchpads, different sizes: One A4 and one A5. To win a sketchpad, just follow the instructions below:
(A) 1 pc. Derwent Academy Sketching Paper – A5 size (5.83 x 8.27”), 30 sheets acid-free If you want to win this pad, follow my Instagram and comment on this photo with your email address.
(B) 1 pc. Derwent Academy Sketching Paper – A4 size (8.27 x 11.69”), 30 sheets acid-free - If you want to win this pad, comment on this post on Tumblr / Disqus comments with your email address. No need to follow my tumblr!
That’s about it! I will also be throwing in a postcard or a doodle inside the pad. Philippine residents only. Winners will be picked on JUNE 5. :)
Trying out Derwent Sketchpad.
Steadler pens and colored pencils. :)
My limited edition giclee prints are 10%-off on AVA.ph until May 31 only. Just 5 days! Visit the shop here: http://ava.ph/shops/188-valerie-chua.html (shop closed - thanks to those who purchased!)
The image here is a print of ‘April’ with gold embellishments. Super good quality! 💖