Friday, 11 May 2018

Inktober 2017

(Note: I suppose posting during exams month is perhaps not the best idea but since I haven't posted anything on here since October, and the post is overdue, I thought I might as well just go along with it. Also I apologise for not replying to all the lovely comments I've been receiving on my blogs - I'll get to them all soon, I promise! <3)

If you saw my Instagram back around October you'd have noticed that I participated in the Inktober 2017 challenge. I had so much fun creating artwork during the month, although I must admit it was quite stressful having to produce something worth publicly posting day after day! This year I noticed once again that I'd improved significantly and proved I could actually be super productive when put under pressure of deadlines. xD

Additionally this year, I decided to test some colour in these pictures using my Aquamarkers and glitter pens... you might notice I went a little overboard in some pieces however! Some of my finished pieces, unsurprisingly, turned out pretty flawed but there are others among these that I'm actually proud of... Below you'll find all the 31 pictures I created during the month and a few bonus original sketches so you're free to make your own judgement... Enjoy! <3

(Note: I've separated these into their different categories with various titles.) 

Fariza & Outfits

Day 1: Dungarees
I'd been wanting to draw Fariza wearing dungarees for a long while before I actually drew this, so I decided I'd go for it in my first drawing of the month! I'm not particularly satisfied with this one, though, because of all the obvious flaws including the fact that her pose doesn't make sense. (It was supposed to give a cute/charismatic impression but that effect really doesn't show here lol.) 

Day 2: Street Fashion
I remember this concept being really cool in my head until I got it down on paper and messed it up bad. First of all, I made the huge mistake of starting off small and following that, I crammed in too many details into a tiny space (the paper eventually started to thin). I tend to make this mistake when drawing digitally as well.

Day 3: Steampunk
Steampunk is something I'm personally fascinated by, with its creative and inspiring historical-style outfits and a machinery combined with sci-fi vibe! For this one I spent quite a while browsing through Pinterest and sketching ideas until I was finally satisfied that Fariza would fit the complexity of the attire's theme. Overall, I really like how this turned out!

Day 4: Witch
Here's another one I spent ages scrolling through Pinterest for! I really wanted to incorporate a Halloween theme into Day 4 as I'd been very much inspired by what I'd seen other artists draw the previous days. I personally think her hair turned out best, because not only did it take so much effort but for once I nailed it on her hairstyle. xD

Day 5: Hibiscus
Now this clearly doesn't look anything like Fariza haha. I'm not exactly sure how I messed up here but what I do know is that her eyes are too long, pointed and in the wrong positions. For this outfit, I wanted to explore one of those "off-the-shoulder" jumpers and decided to incorporate a hibiscus theme (fun fact: hibiscus is my favourite flower and has been for many years! ^^).

Day 6: Blossom
I really liked the theme of this one but... I completely screwed up in the end. The key point was to give it a soft touch like the original sketch (below) and I guess because I was so concentrated on that, she ended up super stiff and her hair is completely in the wrong places lol (except for the section on the left). Something I've learned is that sometimes ideas are better sketched out fresh on paper rather than when they lose energy while drawn multiple times!
Notice how this version has more of a lighter, fairy tale-ish vibe?

Disney Princess
Day 7: Mulan
"The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all."
I'd had a lot of fun drawing the blossoms in the picture of Fariza above, so I thought I'd include them in this Mulan piece too! What better than to have a theme close to one of the best Disney quotes of all time?

Day 8: Jasmine
By the time I got to Jasmine, I knew I was going for a concept where I'd draw each Princess with the flowers of their respective countries and then an iconic background behind them. Here you can see I stayed close to the exquisite Arabian night aesthetic from the film. (It feels like A Whole New World haha.)

Day 9: Moana
"Come what may I know the way"
Moana was an absolute pleasure to draw! I really had that Hawaiian vibe going here and despite the fact that I was very anxious about how I'd go about her complex curls, I had so much fun drawing those wavy lines... it was almost therapeutic haha. I didn't really plan out the background either, it just kind of flowed in its own way. xD

Day 10: Elena
Now I know Elena isn't from the official line up of Princesses but how could I not include one of my Disney favourites in this series right? Besides, a Mexican theme was certainly something I was excited to explore in this one... and it was definitely enjoyable! (I think this is also one of my favourites from the entire month.) Admittedly, I was pretty anxious when it came to the background, but it absolutely had to be her hometown in Avalor, because it's an integral part of this TV series! <3

(Note: I only realised that I hadn't coloured her gold earring until after I'd scanned it so that's what the blank space by her hair is!)
Original sketches for Moana, Elena and Marinette

Miraculous Ladybug
Day 11: Marinette
Despite the fact that I'm such a fan of Marinette, I hadn't actually drawn any proper fanart of her; I thought I'd take the opportunity to give her some justice with this piece! I had just the right Aquamarkers for her hair, so I undoubtedly had to go along with the idea of colour here. 
I still prefer the softer appearance in this original sketch though! I also realised far too late that I'd forgotten to draw Tikki in welp. ;-;

Day 12: Cruiser D.Va
I'm quite fascinated by the retro theme of this skin and I had a lot of fun incorporating the bright neon colours and energetic themes while browsing Pinterest for classy 20th century vibes. I suppose I like how this one turned out, only it doesn't quite look like her! (Click here to see one of the refs I used.)

Naturally this isn't the sort of thing I usually draw but it's fun exploring new concepts!

Day 13: Witch Mercy
I must admit this is not one of my most preferred skins for Mercy but I really had to draw it because of the Halloween theme! It was pretty difficult; I wasn't quite sure how I was going to pull this off but I'd say it looks okay overall? Obviously I messed up when drawing her legs - I know the proportions are flawed! (Really had to squeeze the broom in there yikes. xD) 

Day 14: Young Genji
It seemed evident that I was to draw young!Genji, considering that I'd been drawing him a lot back then, both as complete pieces and doodles. Well this was super tough! At one point he really didn't look right (before I re-did the lineart in pen) and I had a ton of anxiety that I'd have to re-draw him from scratch on another page... Thankfully I managed to correct the issue in the end! But his katana is still way too short.

I really like how my white Signo Uni-ball pen can add those cool white highlights! Does anyone else use one?

Day 15: Young Hanzo
As if Genji didn't create enough anxiety, drawing Hanzo proved much harder! I absolutely had to draw him though, because who's Genji without his brother on the other page? haha. I'd been contemplating for a long time whether or not to draw Hanzo in the main, orange-coloured Young Hanzo skin, but then chose the blue re-colour theme of Young Master because I just happen to have exactly the right two shades of blue Aquamarkers and a gold Metallic Marker which was frankly just perfect for the latter. In the end the hard work paid off; I think this is one of my favourites from the entire month! :)

Day 16: Jiangshi Mei
I saw people drawing Jiangshi Mei, as this skin had just been revealed earlier that month for the Overwatch Halloween event, and felt inspired to give it a go myself! I'm not 100% happy with the result though, because I went overboard with the colour - to the point where it looked like it wasn't Inktober-related anymore! I guess I rushed it as well. (And her hands aren't drawn correctly - I started to go through the page whoops.) I really like how parts of it turned out though, like the cute/challenging smile and Snowball. ^^;

Day 17: Graffiti Tracer
I had to grab the chance to draw this awesome skin of Tracer's while in the midst of this Overwatch series! I really like how she turned out and equally had a blast drawing her... in fact, I think this is another one of my favourites! I guess this is the first time I've properly drawn her too. 

Day 18: Widowmaker & Baguettes
Amélie's features are a little pointed here I must say... Anyway, this is based off a doodle I sketched back in the summer while I was in France. French patisseries/boulangeries are truly inspiring. :)) Sure, I didn't do her hair justice but I do like how those baguettes turned out. (▱˘◡˘▱)


Day 19: Kei & Rilakkuma
This had been an idea going on in my head for quite a while until I finally nailed it down here. It's loosely based on Kei's look in the Lovelyz x The Solutions, Beautiful MV from a while back, which I previously did fanart for last Inktober if anyone remembers! I really like the idea of Kei and the kawaii Rilakkuma theme. ^^

Day 20: Stage Kei
Not quite sure why but this one received more love than the one above on Instagram despite the fact I personally prefer the first! xD I really wanted to draw Kei a second time because this is one of my favourite appearances for her (and I secretly want this outfit haha). I don't think I got her facial features quite right here however...

I'd love to hear your opinion! Which is your favourite out of the two?

Day 21: Lisa / As If It's Your Last
I really liked the casual look of Lisa in this particular MV of Blackpink's and I really wanted to have a go at her in this outfit! Unfortunately I couldn't add all the interesting colours and I'm quite sure that for anyone who hasn't seen this appearance would have no idea what it looks like just from this drawing (for all you know it could be purple and green for instance xD). So click here to see one of the refs I used on Pinterest!
As for this picture, I'm not too contented with it because it doesn't really look like her. >.< (I also messed up with the anatomy aah.)

Day 22: Dahyun / TT
Dahyun is my Twice bias so I had to draw her too! Thought I'd finally use this as a chance to do some Twice TT fanart. ;) Here I decided on using just one colour again and since the rest of her outfit is white, it made sense that I'd choose the vibrant purple of her shirt.

Day 23: Jiwoo / Rumor
I hadn't done any K.A.R.D fanart until this point so I thought I'd have a go at Jiwoo in the Rumor MV as this look is super cool. The details on her outfit were very time consuming! I really like how this turned out overall, her expression, the ponytail and details. (I need to practise more at drawing lips though since that's my flaw.)

Day 24: Momo / Signal
More Twice fanart, this time Momo! Believe it or not, I started drawing this on a car journey in France and it was tough! But that was just the pencil sketching I suppose - I didn't actually do most of the final pen sketch until we got to the hotel (it was near Bordeaux by the way ^^). Anyway, I really like this MV, it's so catchy! <3

Outdoor Sketches

Day 25: Sketches in Spain
I didn't really know where to start with this tbh so I had to force myself to lock onto something and sketch it as quick as I could! :D Of course Spain has many mountains and heights so I had to sketch a couple of those. And yes, I went to Spain! It's really beautiful and picturesque there, I feel so nostalgic about the sights I saw. I have plenty of pictures which I'll hopefully share sooner or later and a couple are of a spectacular sunset I managed to capture.

Day 26: Sketches in Spain #2
Here's a sketch I made while on the balcony of the hotel by the south coast of Spain! It was of a pretty house I spotted opposite. I noticed that the colours of Spain are so vibrant and saturated compared to the dull and monotone greys I see in the UK. A lot of the houses I saw there were an interesting colour coordination of mustard-yellow and terracotta-red. :) I'd absolutely love to go and visit Spain again! <3

Day 27: Sketches in Morocco
I sketched these around when we left Fez! Tbh, I think it was actually Day 28 since I missed a day when we were actually in Fez (too busy!) and decided to catch up on the car journey the following day. Morocco, just like Spain, is so mountainous lol. The views are absolutely stunning though... kept taking way too many pictures. As for the picture itself, I really like the cross-hatching technique I used for the third mountain I sketched!  

Arbos Anima / Plant Hunter

Day 28: Harriet Lee
I'll be honest with y'all again, I didn't actually draw this on Day 28! But I figured it's not such a bad thing to catch up afterwards as I noticed many other artists doing this. ^^; As for this piece, I wanted to draw some fanart for Harriet Lee, my favourite character in the manga series I'm currently reading, Arbos Anima. It's definitely an underrated manga series and absolutely my favourite so far!

I'll have to draw some more fanart soon as I'm super intrigued by the series! C:
Once again, I prefer the original sketch to the final piece! I doodled this on a note from the hotel just as an idea, but it ended up looking the best when compared. (I prefer her expression here!)

Outdoor Sketches #2

Day 29: Sketches in Morocco #2
Sketched this during our stay in Errachidia (east of Morocco) - near the Sahara desert! There was an extraordinary view of the mountains and I just had to sketch them. I'm not too sure why I decided to sketch that building in the middle though, I think my idea was "oh just do it!" to add some variety... but yeah, that kind of ruins the effect. xD Never mind, at least I learned something!

Day 30: Sketches in Morocco #3
I think I drew these on the 31st. Again, I drew a building I was not at all satisfied with and pretty much gave up on it welp. As for the two sketched below, the desert dune and date tree, those were based on pictures I took when visiting Merzouga (where the Sahara desert opens up!).

Hatsune Miku

Day 31: Sand Planet (Suna no Wakusei/砂の惑星)
After visiting the Sahara desert, I was fresh with new ideas and it seemed perfectly fitting that I would wrap up Inktober with a drawing of Hatsune Miku in the Sand Planet MV! (For anyone who hasn't seen it yet, I highly recommend checking it out, the animation is fantastic! Click here if you're interested.) In fact, I'd been planning to draw her all along and it only just happened that I'd be inspired by the desert trip! I feel like I rushed Miku's hair here though. ;-;

Any favourites? Or general Inktober discussions? I'd love to hear it in the comments below! <3

As for next year, I'm very unlikely to be participating since I'll be really busy with the final year of my A levels, obviously. I've really enjoyed participating these past few years though, so I'm sure it'll be hard to avoid the challenge while being motivated by other people's inspiring work on my Instagram dashboard! Maybe just a few? We'll have to see haha... Who else is planning on taking part in Inktober 2018? If not, have you ever taken part in any other challenges (doesn't have to be art related)? ^^

Click the links below to see my drawings for previous Inktober challenges!
- Inktober 2016
- Inktober 2015 (1)
- Inktober 2015 (2)

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Last Year's Post (2016)

This was actually meant to be posted the day before yesterday according to my new bujo post schedule! I'm finding these strict schedules are a pain but they're encouraging me to be more productive. In fact, believe it or not I was meant to post these pictures over a year ago! Anyone remember when I conducted that poll asking what you'd like to see first on my blog (e.g. outdoor sketches and vogue inspired art)? Well here it is!
(Once again, I promise I'll get to other people's posts too! <3)
Over the summer holidays last year I felt compelled to draw some art inspired by the interesting pieces in Fashion Art of Vogue, a book I have. (Some of you may be familiar by the popular fashion magazine, Vogue!) The book has plenty of gorgeous designs, from English to Parisian to Japanese, and captures formidable fashion styles from over the years.
I was fascinated how the expressions capture the varying personalities of the people drawn in intriguing ways. I think I'd better do some pieces inspired by the artwork in this book for Inktober - most are all in black and white!
The picture I've drawn above is of one of the many detailed pieces that caught my eye. ^^ I decided to have a go at redrawing it in my own style! (I'll have to find the source and I'll be sure to add it here when I do.)
Haha okay this re-draw I did is pretty bad. xD Back when I drew this, though, even though I noticed the faults the result actually seemed okay! But now I can just see that if I were re-doing it, the hair would be neater and so would the eyes. The picture is based off another image I found in the Vogue art book that inspired me - I'll have to find out what it's called because the concept of it is so inspiring!
The next few pictures (and the one above) are some outdoor sketches I did last year that I promised to post earlier but didn't get round to it. This particular one is of a passion fruit flower in the garden! The plant does give passion fruits too but they never ripen, naturally because I don't live somewhere where there's a warmer climate. xD
This is supposed to be a red and yellow dahlia that I also drew in the garden but it doesn't look anything like one... I completely messed this up with watercolours! That's the thing with watercolours - you can only really create one layer without ruining your picture and you always have to start with the lighter colours first before moving on to darker shades (and I obviously didn't respect that here).
Here's the sketch before I ruined the flower! I think I took this outside when the sun was dipping so it's not a particularly good shot haha.
These are some pink Japanese anemones - they were super fun to draw! Granted, I kind of messed up with the watercolour layering again but it's still my favourite out of the three! xD If you're starting out, simple flowers like these are a good way to begin rather than more complex ones (like the dahlia I drew above, or a rose for example).
I'll confess I drew these this summer (not summer 2016!) but I felt it was relevant to the subject of outdoor sketching! Besides, I think my improvement is visible when compared to the three above. I was also meant to use watercolours for these but I didn't have the time unfortunately. Anyway, the top sketch is a purple hibiscus (one of my favourite flowers) and the one below it is a cream rose.

Here are my tips for outdoor sketching!
  • If you're sketching an animal/insect/moving object and it leaves, stop the sketch and don't continue it. Otherwise, you're likely to ruin it! It's easy for your mind to confuse certain aspects and make random assumptions that are incorrect.
  • You could even sketch with blue or red! In fact, you can sketch with literally anything that makes lines on your page. (You don't have to have fancy art materials for a sketch to look good - just do it!) I don't personally use blue or red now, however, because I find it hard to draw something with an impact... but that's just me.
  • Remember that, although it's not necessary, you can find different ranges of pencils - 6H (6 hard) is hard, good for details; 6B (6 black) is soft, good for soft sketches/smudging; while HB is normal. I tend to sketch in pen (0.05 or 0.1) not pencil but it's all up to you!
  • Make it light and try not to go over your sketch too much - it can become pretty messy (instead of simple and loose) and the page might even crumple if it's not heavyweight.
  • If you use watercolours, remember not to layer over too much else your page will risk crumpling/the colours will bleed through the page if it's not heavyweight. Also, start with the lighter colours before the darker ones because there's no going back!
  • Another important thing when using watercolours is that you remember to keep adding water or they won't blend nicely. I was once lazy with a Chinese-themed piece (that I posted ages ago) and the colours ended up sticking hard rather than blending smoothly because I didn't add enough water to my brush.
  • If you like your ink sketches having that smudgy-looking blend effect, you can buy a water brush. In case you don't have a clue what I mean by a water brush, they have a smooth white tip and a see-through plastic feed filled with water designed to help the ink blend on your page when you squeeze the feed. (They're SO fun to use! I got to use one once at an art workshop but when I looked in HobbyCraft I found that they were pretty pricy... I'll have to buy one off Amazon some time!)
Over a year ago I won Megan's awesome giveaway (via Megans Mega Blog)! The prize came with these two super cute colouring sheets by Heartfelt Illustrations that I had the chance to colour in. Colouring is a super fun and relaxing activity and still remember enjoying colouring-in this one! I'll definitely have a go at the activity again sometime soon to help me improve with my Prismacolor pencils too. :)
I really like the design of this one! Here I decided on pastel colours with a beach theme - yellows, oranges, pinks and blues. I adore the summer vibes this one has. ^^
Colouring sheet by Heartfelt Illustrations.

As well as these pictures I also have a box-covering DIY tutorial that I meant to post from summer 2016 where I transformed an old, broken pencil pot into a newer-looking one and on top of that, this year I took some pictures for a tutorial on how to personalise art books (using several I bought for £1 at The Works) which I'll definitely have to get round to writing up! Yet again, another tutorial I have from around two years ago shows you how to make an origami flower which I think is pretty cool but the tutorial itself is a little outdated as I never got round to making a post about it welp. xD Anyway, let me know which tutorial you guys would be interested in seeing the most out of these three! (I'll make a poll for it so anyone can feel free to vote!) 

Friday, 29 September 2017

Photography - Summer in France (continued)

Here's the continuation of my photography in France! Enjoy! <3

I've just reached the end of the planner in my bullet journal which means I'll have to plan a new one for October... It was an interesting method to encourage myself to get round to posting but I definitely think posting once a week on both my blogs is too much! (I'm leaning towards the idea of a fortnightly schedule but I'll have to see.) 

Here's a shot I took from outdoors on the ferry!
(This was at the very beginning of the holiday.)

I kind of like how the water trail looks here. xD

The following three pictures were taken on a day out when I had the chance to buy a couple of French patisseries (I can't actually remember what!)... I love French patisseries can you tell. xD

A random sunset picture from somewhere in the holiday I posted on Instagram

I took this and the following few pictures on a specific daytrip to the beach (once again, in the Côte d'Albâtre). The view was beautiful!

I really like how the perspective and vanishing point turned out in this shot. :) 

Okay my mouth is watering. ;-; This is another French patisserie, this time called the Religieuse and it's filled with crème pâtissière (in this case, chocolate cream) and just... it's absolutely delicious, no words. Definitely worth trying!

Yet again the same day trip but this and the picture below is from the neighbouring marina. 

This is a manor in Normandy, in which the French would refer to as a château. Back in the old days they used to belong to the rich French nobles or even a member of the royalty. These manors are quite common in Normandy and they're pretty grand!

(I'm not sure which out of this and the one above looks best tbh?)
This is a completely different château where I pretty much missed the shot. 

I suppose this isn't very France-related as such (although I did take it on one of the day trips) but it looks so atmospheric! 

Here's another château! (This would be the third I saw and I took this picture on the route back to England.)

Below are a couple of pictures on the route back home to England. I really like the sunset aesthetic in these! C:

This is one of my favourites - that's a river there btw!

I also really liked this one.

The two pictures below are a bit odd I suppose! They were taken at the very beginning of the holiday after departing from the ferry. I couldn't get any proper shots of the night-time lights reflecting on the water so they turned out a bit like this haha...



Coucou xD Honestly didn't expect to find her on the funko pop statue shelf. (Okay I admit I even wanted this but augh it was 15 Euros man... I legit would have bought it if it had been a third of the price. ;-;)

Gosh this store has one heck of a good range of media items and yes manga is one of those things. Apparently France is one of the top countries that reads manga (after Japan of course)!

 I spent aaages choosing manga books here! In the end I bought two (Arbos Anima 3 and a new one I haven't heard of). If I went back I'd definitely get the Beauty and the Beast manga because it looked super cool! (I think it's to do with the new live-action film.) 

Thanks for viewing! Let me know which one was your favourite! :D