Robot Devil

If you’ve been paying attention over the last few months you might have seen the name Tom appear once or twice.  He’s my boyfriend, and I have slowly been dragging him into the world of craft and art.  We collaborated in October on an origami scene, and he’s been helping me enhance some of my traditional art digitally as well.

Today I’m going to show you what he helped me do to this drawing of Robot Devil from Futurama.

2019-06-28 16.00.17

Sometimes Tom scans the work, but for this one he worked from this photo.  He cut out the devil, added a background, and adjusted both layers to work together.  And now I have this awesome image.

2019-11-09 19.18.12

Robot devil was part of my self-imposed challenge for 2019 to draw 100 robots.  I’m gonna be posting the wrap up for that in a day or two.  Robot devil is also part of another big project I’ll be releasing soon – keep your eyes peeled for that 🙂

A New Approach to Learning

When I decide I want to try something new, I have a process.  Sort of.  I will research.  A lot.  I will watch seven million YouTube videos, and collect seven million images from Pinterest to copy, and find seven million webpages to read.  And I will list all of these things on a special page in my notebook for that project.

After that I will sometimes do one or two of those things, and then I will graduate to doing my own thing.  But then I find myself needing to complete the list.  My brain tells me that there’s a project that is unfinished, that I need to watch the rest of the videos and work through the rest of the tutorials.  And it ends up on my list of things to finish that takes months and months and months for me to get around to.

In my notebook at the moment I have incomplete pages for:

– learning to use Copic markers (which I have now been doing for more than a year)

– for using my Dremel tool (which I have had for about 9 months)

– for colouring/drawing digitally (which I am getting better at without having visited any of the links)

– for calligraphy/lettering (which I don’t really do all that often anyway)

– for using my 3D printing pen (which I tend to do spontaneously anyway)

– for using my mini die cutting machine (ditto)

– watercolours (which I do a lot)

– for Brusho paint crystals (which I have bought but not done anything with)

– for acrylic pouring (which I bought all the bits for, but haven’t touched yet)

– for paracord (which I haven’t done in months)

– and for resin (which I have been fumbling through without referring to the list).


These lists sit in my notebook, glaring accusingly at me when I flip through the book.  I fully intend to work through them.  But I just never got around to it.

This year I took the watercolour list and culled it.  A lot.  I crossed off a whole bunch of things that had appealed to me initially but that don’t pique my interest anymore.  And I’ve worked through a big bunch of what was left.

Going forward though, I hope to take an entirely different approach to learning.  The November Scrawlr box contained gouache paints, which were something I had wanted to use at some point anyway.  Not wanting to fill another notebook page (or three) with things to do, I decided to watch one or two YouTube videos only.  I settled on finding 2 or 3 beginners courses or articles, and collecting 2 or 3 reference images to mimic.

So far, I have stuck to that.  I still scroll through YouTube and Pinterest for inspiration, but I don’t add them to any list.

Whether or not this new approach will last is a complete unknown.  I start things with good intentions but… well, I’m sure you know me pretty well by now.

Galaxy Robots

In my notebook I have a list of art ideas.  Well, I have many lists of different things, but most of those aren’t important right now.  On this art ideas list, under the subheading “robots” was: galaxy silhouette watercolour”.

I couldn’t remember if I wanted the shape to be galaxy, or the background.  So I did both.

After I carefully and meticulously taped down two sheets of paper I realised I wanted the same shape for both, and should probably have lightboxed BEFORE I taped down the paper to a cutting mat.

Then I used masking fluid to block off the shape on one side, and the outline on the other.  I did a nice thick line for the outline, because I am a messy painter.  Then I realised that the fluid would change the texture of the paper and there would be an odd looking line, so I just blocked off the whole page.

2019-09-25 19.23.25

Then I painted, painted some more, got the page way too wet, got out the paper towel, absorbed a lot of the water, and painted some more.

Once everything had dried, I started to peel the masking fluid off.  Which is when I remembered that I have two different watercolour pads.  One does really well with masking fluid.  One does not.

Guess which one I used.

Yeah.  Crap.

Thankfully, I am an impatient person.  I am incapable of working on one watercolour piece at a time, because I hate waiting for things to dry.  So while I was working on that disaster, I had also been doing this.

2019-09-25 20.37.312019-09-26 10.31.412019-09-27 10.32.58

I scanned it and edited the colours a little.  I lie.  My boyfriend did it for me.

2019-09-26 19.34.44

As awesome as it looks, I wasn’t really happy with the stars.  So Tom took the photo of the stage before the stars, and edited that for me instead.  Then I added the stars digitally.  And it looks much much better.

nebula galaxy

After that I took the original basic robot silhouette template I had used, worked some digital magic and here ya go!

2019-10-04 17.59.38

Galaxy silhouette watercolour robots. Very funky.

December Scrawlr Box

In my post about November’s Scrawlr Box the other day I said this:

Some boxes contain supplies that I know how to use and I’m super excited about, and they get completed within hours of me opening the box.  Some contain supplies I’m not so sure about, and tend to get set aside for a while.

November’s box was the second type.  December’s box was the first.

2019-12-20 14.21.44

I’m not sure if the two stickers was deliberate, but bonus anyway.  And the ruler is solid copper and it is freaking awesome!

Step one: swatching.

2019-12-20 14.26.58

Step two: follow the theme of “Squared Away” and do a grid of random doodled patterns.

2019-12-20 14.43.26

Step three: marvel at the shine!

2019-12-20 14.43.36

Step four: draw random monster.  Because monsters.

2019-12-20 20.28.21

The featured artist by the way is Mirela Duta.  Very funky.

November Scrawlr Box

A week before Christmas I received the shipping notification for the December Scrawlr Box. At which point I figured I should really finish off the November box.

Some boxes contain supplies that I know how to use and I’m super excited about, and they get completed within hours of me opening the box.  Some contain supplies I’m not so sure about, and tend to get set aside for a while.

The November box contained the second type.

2019-11-29 14.39.54.jpg

2019-11-29 14.41.04

A day or so before my box arrived, Scrawlr sent out this very cryptic email.

When I got the box I discovered what it was about.  The little black thing above the pencil in my picture of the supplies.  It comes apart into two pieces, and goes back together to make a paintbrush.

I’ve never used gouache before, but it’s something that’s been on my list of art materials to try one day.  I had no idea where to start, so I was a little intimidated.  But I finally started.  By ignoring the supplies and sketching out a piece to paint first.

2019-12-17 22.53.42

Eventually though, I had to swatch.

2019-12-18 14.51.03

I tried mixing some colours, but wasn’t happy with the ones I produced.  I mean, they were nice colours, but they were totally wrong for the character I’d drawn.  She’s my original character Effy and she has very bright hair.

2019-09-18 21.43.32

So I decided to do something simpler instead.  I started with one of my dome monsters.

2019-12-18 18.13.56

And I did the latest shape challenge from Studio Tea Break – creating a monster, obviously.

Gouache is supposed to be more opaque, so you can do layers.  So I did the grey colour for the body first, then added the spots and the eyes.  I’m not sure if the spots came out okay, but the eye definitely needed a few coats.

I also did a blended circles exercise, and some dome monsters.

Of course, I couldn’t leave Effy unfinished, so I got out my watercolours for her.

2019-12-19 14.05.29

And because I like to use every bit of mixed paint left on the palette, I did more dome monsters.  And a cat in a window.  Because why not?

Oh, and before I forget, the featured Scrawlr Box artist for November was Riso Chan who did this awesome piece.

December’s Scrawlr blog will be posted in a couple of days, just in time to receive January’s box.

Christmas Haul

I promised you all a haul post of my Christmas presents, and I think we’re overdue for a picture heavy post.  So here we go.

First off, it’s not technically an art or craft supply, but it’s adorable and very useful.  Tom got me a unicorn lap desk.

I show you the cushiony bit because most of the following pictures have it as a background and I wouldn’t want you to wonder where my scruffy desktop went.

I got a unicorn 3D puzzle kit, which I have already completed.

I got a Superman “Lego” thing, which I have already completed.  Not pictured is a massive box of just basic Lego bricks that I also got.

I got a unicorn felt kit, which I have already completed.

I got three colouring books, which I have not completed, but I have started.

I got a unicorn sticker mosaic book, which I have started.  Can you tell I like unicorns?

2019-12-25 12.13.44

I got some tube watercolours, and some iridescent watercolours, which I have already started playing with.

As well as a 3 pack of watercolour sketchbooks, which was perfectly timed because I only have one or two pages left of my last 3 pack.

2019-12-25 12.15.27

I got a Star Wars crochet kit, which I have started…

2019-12-25 12.15.41

…and a needle felting kit that I have not started.

2019-12-25 12.15.53

I got a freaking set of Copic Ciao markers!  I have been using these since almost the second I got them.

I got some absolutely gorgeous Desert Bus special yarn by Schmutzerella yarns.

2019-12-25 12.17.37

I got some washi tapes, which takes my collection from a bazillion to a bazillion and a bit more.

I got lots of little bits and pieces including a funky double notebook, 2 matching pouches, a tiny notepad, 2 erasable pens, 2 massive scented highlighters, two sets of stickers (more unicorns!), and some UV resin.

And from my mother I received a big bag with a mix of new/secondhand craft supplies…

2019-12-25 10.04.18

…which included lots of stamps…

…and some acrylic stamp blocks…

2019-12-25 12.24.35

…and some stamp/cutting dies/embossing folder sets…

2019-12-25 12.25.14

…as well as a punch and bits…

2019-12-25 12.26.03

…some papers…

2019-12-25 12.27.57

…a box of sparklies…

2019-12-25 12.28.34

…and some miscellaneous bits…

2019-12-25 12.26.57

…that included the world’s ugliest ribbon, which isn’t actually that bad once it’s unspooled.

So yeah, I just got a few bits 🙂

Wanna take a guess at how many of these will reappear in blog posts?

Using My Instagram Palette

Last week, Kasey Golden on YouTube posted a video where she used her Instagram colour palette to draw with.

Of course I had to copy her.  So I popped off to the generator she used, ColorKuler.  I was half expecting my palette to be a rainbow, so at first I was a little shocked by these muted tones.

2019-12-28 20.00.09

But I suppose it was influenced by my many many robots.

As for what to draw, I’ve been doing lots of chibis recently.  And I was inspired by the beautiful dress on this drawing of the goddess Artemis by Naomi Lord.

After I’d finished sketching I realised that my girl was going to look a little anemic since there’s no flesh colour in my palette really, but I think she looks pretty good.


Obviously I cheated a little when it came to the hue of the background, but we’ll pretend we didn’t notice that.

I’m really happy with the detail on her outfit and accessories.  I need to do more intricate stuff in my art.  And I’m super happy with how she looks because it was all done digitally.  I did use a chibi pose reference from Pinterest, but other than that it’s all me.  Don’t ya just love seeing your skills improve?