Wednesday, April 26, 2017

WCW #7: Sketching Helps!

Lemons--inspired by Ohn Mar Win @ohn_mar_win on Instagram
Happy Watercolor Wednesday everyone! Over the past week, I have spent some time sketching before painting, and I find it is helping me quite a bit. For the lemons above, I watched Ohn Mar Win demonstrate painting a lime in a similar whimsy fashion on Skillshare [Sketchbook Practice: Grow in Your Art Everyday]. For my practice, I took photos of a cut lemon from various angles and then sketched them onto my art journal. Only the wedges were painted without a reference. 

Kid Art Inspired
Every year our district hosts an art exhibition of student-created art. For two weeks, I walk up and down the halls of the administration building admiring their work and efforts. The piece above is my interpretation of some of their work and some other pieces I've seen on Instagram. For this, a nickel and a ruler helped with the design. Then it was all up to the painting and line work to give this design a feel of motion and movement. I was careful to shade only one edge of each 'ray' and then add a slight curve to the horizontal lines separating each segment on the ray. I drew the piece on a Friday and painted it on Saturday morning. Such a fun way to start the weekend!!

Tulips--How to Draw Modern Florals  by Alli Koch
This painting was inspired by the book How to Draw Modern Florals by Alli Koch. Throughout her book, she gives step-by-step instructions and models to draw a variety of flowers. To finish the tulips out, I added stems, leaves and a pot...again lightly sketching each part to help me get it close to correct! To be honest, my favorite part is the pot...go figure!! :-)

Tulips inspired by Jay Lee Art
While this post is mainly about sketching prior to painting, my point really is this: sketching, for me, trains my eye and hand to see the parts of the shape--part to whole, if you will. I'm no artist...believe me. And, I cannot draw a decent stick figure...but through tutorials and practice, I feel I'm getting a little better each day. The next important thing I'm learning is that through sketching, I can then transfer that knowledge into the free-flowing art that I hope to create on my own one day. The tulips above were painted after watching Jay Lee model his process. By drawing and painting the tulips previously, I felt more confident approaching the free-style tulips.

I hope this post has inspired you to give sketching a try. Honestly, I'm most impatient when it comes to art...which requires patience, and I don't like sketching first...but when I'm finish, I'm glad I did! Please leave a comment below if this post is helpful in any way or if you have any tips on sketching.

Until next week....paint your heart out!


  1. Such pretty artwork Cindy! All your designs look amazing!

  2. OMG, Cindy! We must be living in parallel universes, I have taken up art in the last two years and have ALL the same drawings/paintings that you do. I just paint because I love it, but I seem to be doing the same subjects/colors that you are doing....I am In Madison, Wisconsin, and just came across you recently...Happppy Sunday to you, Mary


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