Thursday, May 22, 2014

Tutorial- Easy Watercolor Silhouette

I've been playing around lately, partly in preparation for my part in the Made ecourse, and partly just because.  The year for me in terms of creating ebbs and flows, and I still don't feel like I'm completely at peace with the ebb.

Is this a problem for anyone else?   I know in my head that I will have times that are ripe for creation and other times that- due to family commitments, busyness, fatigue- are just not.  It's not about balance for me, it's about peace and acceptance.

Anyway, I've been really intrigued with ways to incorporate silhouettes, shapes of women from magazines and old books.  I've used them before- sometimes just collaging them in, sometimes altering them, sometimes spraying around them- but lately I've been playing around with my watercolor crayons and pencils.  I love how they have turned out.  They are more personal and simple.  So I thought I'd share.

I use many different magazines to find inspiration: fashion catalogs, women's magazines, travel and vintage, even architecture magazines.  When a silhouette in an ad strikes me, I tear it out for future use, or as in this case, I cut carefully around the silhouette.

Next I use a sketching pen to trace around the image on a blank book page.  I sometimes will add details to the image in addition to the outline, but this time I chose not to.

Once I've traced it, I then go over the figure with either a watercolor crayon or watercolor pencil.  I want a thick enough line so that the water added later will fully engage with the color.

I use a round brush and add water to the silhouette, pulling color away from the edge and giving it a shaded look.

Then I cut out the image and apply it to my page.  In this case, the woman (who was holding back a curtain at a window) is parting the water in a sort of waterfall image.

There you go!  Simple.  And there's a lot more you can do with them: add more colors, do mirror images with two, etc.  Just play and see what you come up with!

Here's to the ebb and flow of the creative process, and joy in the mess.  

Be sure to pop back in next week when I will be taking part in a giveaway for spots in the fall Made ecourse.  Blessings on your weekend!