Happy Friday, my friend! I hope that your week has gone well for you. Thanks for all of the wonderful birthday messages on Wednesday; I did have a wonderful day! Today’s share is a Juniper tree in alcohol ink. This is from another tutorial, by Andrea Voykin Patton, in the Alcohol Ink Conference in August. Believe it or not, I started on this piece at least 3 weeks ago – and just finished it yesterday! The lesson from this – don’t worry if you can’t or don’t get your projects done in one sitting. Just keep going back, and work when you can.
The reference photo is one that Andrea took, herself. I watched the video, made some notes, and substituted some of the colours she had used, for ink colours that I have. Don’t be afraid to swap out colours! For example, she used Rust, which I swapped out for Sienna. Both are a reddish brown, right? So, keep within the colour ‘family’, but use what you have. (and then put the colours you didn’t have onto your wish list!)
Here’s a picture of the reference photo on the left, and my finished painting on the right.
What I find so interesting about the reference photo is the shape of the tree! That, and the shading. I love how the trunk of the tree twists as it grows, and the changing colours in the bark.
First, use a piece of graphite paper and a pencil to lightly trace the image onto 4 1/2″ x 6″ piece of Yupo. Next, apply masking fluid to the horizon line, and the leaves of the tree & parts of the trunk. Set aside to allow the masking fluid to dry. I usually allow overnight, or at least several hours for this. (a great excuse to start another project, at the same time). When the masking fluid is dry, pour Sailboat Blue ink and Alcohol Blending Fluid onto the top of the Yupo, to create the sky. In her video, Andrea had used a cotton ball dipped in alcohol to ‘wipe’ the sky. I created my sky by tilting the Yupo back & forth, and gently brushing out any hard lines.
Once your sky is dry, remove the masking fluid. Using Qtips dipped in ink, create the bushes. For variation in colour, use at least 2-3 green inks; I chose Botanical, Everglades and Bottle. Next, use small brushes for the tree trunk, and another Qtip for the tree shadow. For the browns, I chose Latte and Teakwood. When the trunk is dry, use more Qtips to add the leaves to the tree, using the same 3 greens as for the bushes.
The ground is created with Sienna ink, and a bit of Sunshine Yellow added to the horizon line, and into the trees. Finish off any touch-up’s and then add some highlights with a white fine tip Posca paint pen.
I really liked the different textures in this work. Using different tools, such as brushes and Qtips, really adds interest. For the Sienna ground, I applied the ink with a Qtip, but did most of it in a back & forth blending motion, then going back & dabbing to add more texture.
Even though the Conference is over, being a Society member means that I have lifetime access to all of the tutorials! That’s an amazing reference tool to have at my disposal. Being a Society member also gives me access to previous conference videos & tutorials, and Society and Community member tutorials. If you enjoy creating with alcohol inks, you should check into joining! Community membership is free; Society membership has a fee, but I think it’s worth it. CLICK HERE to go to the Alcohol Ink Community site.
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