Depression by Name
If you have depression or lived with someone who has it, well it can be horrible. The lack of understanding of this mental illness can also be as devastating. This blog entry is an expression through illustration, of depression in my life and in the life of those I live with. Our Super Hero suffers from depression and is in a fight to win the battle.
As we join our super here we see that that villain has clouded Super Pigs perception of that little pigs very inner being. The words of Super Pigs friends surround our hero to shield against the crushing power of that villain, better known as “depression”. Will our Super Hero win? YES. Because our Super Hero knows the weakness of that dastardly evil villain. Depression is a liar.
This Illustration is available in my Society6 store. I can attest to their professional results in Society6 printing. Recently I ordered some prints and a duvet cover and well…… MIND BLOWING!! The colors are fantastic. The quality is unbelievable. Below are some of the products and links.
Remember to support those who suffer from this illness. Listen to what they have to say and be a support. Don’t discount their feels or their struggles. Look for warning signs. Read about the effects, signs and treatments, and what to do to be a helpful and productive support.
If you have not already please join me on Instagram, EdithSchmidtArt. I always post what I am up to. Until the next time Cheers! Edie
How do you eat a whole chocolate cake?
One bite at a time.
Several years ago I stopped making New Year’s resolutions and started with just making daily intentions. At that moment, I started to succeed in my goals. Every day I set my intentions, if it is in movement (exercise) or art, or just cleaning the house. I find that with these small little changes my cake gets eaten.
How I Deal With Grief
I put my sorrow on the paper in the form of watercolor. As the image becomes clearer, my grief starts to change. It seems to leave and pour out in the art. Better out then in. I channel all the sorrow, happy, or anger in this way. Super Pig tells me that even Terri Pritchett wrote from a point of rage as Neil Gaiman said of his friend in an interview with the Guardian. This past week has been filled with emotions and wrapped with memories and happiness as well. Being an artist, I have other artist that inspire me and push me to new levels. David Bowie was one of those individuals.
About “Finding Major Tom”
This image was inspired by the album “Black Star”. As you can see the alien landscape and the spacesuit have been incorporated in this watercolor. Super Pig has landed, and is accompanied by his friends, Ginny the Guinea Pig, and Mango the cat. They are carefully kneeling down, reverent in their observing of the space suit that once held Major Tom. They know and understand that this being has gone on to a much larger canvas, but they pause to honor the life that touch so many including this artist.
Missing in Space
I have not been posting my usual. My world has been rocked to its core. With the loss of David Bowie and then Allen Rickman, well I have not been quite up to my usual. I will say that when I finally could catch my breath, and listen to David Bowie’s last album and see it. Really SEE it, it amazed and comforted me. Truly, he as an artist, would be something to aspire to be. If you have not seen the Black Star Video, then you must.
Working though the emotions when a hero dies
Super Pig just had to go and look for David among the stars. And so another adventure begins.
Getting A Positive Frame of mind
Sometimes my mornings are hectic and sometimes my mornings are quite and reflective, but regardless of what goes on, I still have to come into my studio and produce something for the day. It helps me greatly if I check my energy prior to even starting my day.
Over a year ago, something extremely negative happened to my family and I was faced with the choice of focusing on that negativity, or putting it aside and moving from that. It was hard, hard, hard. It still can be hard even today. Because that negative thing that happened didn’t go away. We are still dealing with it.It was just before event came in put life, that I had started meditating. I have kept up the meditations for over a year now. Just that quite focus at the start of each day has help me greatly with over coming, and coping, with negative emotion.
Why So Serious
Negative emotion can rob you of everything, most of all the joy, creative ability, and purpose in life. In my life at any rate. It was when I was faced with the choice of holding on to, or letting go of the negative, and the fear, that consumed me. I chose art. The light. The positive. I was prepared to make room for the positive, even if that meant to remove the pain of negative emotion. Now you might say of coarse you would want the positive. Well sometimes you get so used to the pain that it doesn’t seem like you are choosing a negative. Believe me you can’t draw happy pigs if your full of toxic emotions.
Keep Your Work Space Energized
I want to encourage you to open the shades and windows. Let in the light. Have that cup of tea or coffee or glass of wine at mid day. Turn up the music. Take off your shoes and dance. What ever it takes to fluff up your pillows and air out your soul.
Learn to identify negative emotions that live inside you and negative Statements that fall from your lips. It doesn’t mean that you won’t have negative things that come in your life, but you won’t live or dwell in that negativity for ever. You can acknowledge that its there, and grieve, get angry, but you can let it go. Negative doesn’t have to be your companion.
Enjoy your day, be creative
About the image and sources.
The image that you see was created in watercolor, the slid show shows the process. Special thanks goes to Winsor and Newton watercolors, Canson 140b cold pressed paper, and Liquitex inks. Thank you for dropping by.
All Rights Reserved.
Patterns are everywhere!
Everywhere I look I see patterns. In linens, clothing, wallpaper, tiles, rugs, anything that could remotely display a repeated design. I started loving pattern work when I was quilting. The patterns were always lively, and of every consiviable element. Zebras, teapots, kittens, anything and everything. As an artist you can’t help but want to roll up your sleeves, and dive right in, and create a few of your own.
Old School Way
I work in illustrator when I want to do repeats. I simply put in my element or elements, and with a few twist and turns, bam!! There it is, 1/2″ or 1/4″ drop, repeating every 3rd, 4th or 5th time. What ever I need to accomplish my vision, I am able to do so with a few short moves to get the desired pattern. But, what if you wanted to do it without a computer, or without a program. Perhaps you wanted to get to the bare bones of the pattern and draw it out your self. Well here is a simple way to get a straight across repeat.
Start with a square piece paper. I used 140 cold pressed paper. It holds the shape when I used my watercolors on it. Meaning the paper will not buckle when it gets wet. Or at least not too much. I cut mine 8″ x 8″.
The center will hold the design. That element will be carried straight across the paper (remember I said this was a straight across repeat) I make it just off center. Keep in mind that this element will appear across your finished pattern. I want to “kind of” make it visible but “invisible” because once you start seeing patterns, the repeat will become very evident.
Then I cut my 8″x8″ square in half (Equal Parts) and place the two outer sides together. I use artist tape. This is a tape that has a reduced tack, and can be easily removed without ripping or damaging the back of the paper. Then I fill that newly created space in with art work. Now you can see what I meant when I said a straight across repeat. See how the design will move straight across?
Then I cut the two halves in half and turn the top and bottom sides in to the middle. Taping it together so that my work will be lined up and easy to apply the design and watercolor. I did not include an image of that step (sorry) I had created this design earlier this year and had gotten swept up in the creation that I forgot to take a photo.
You should now have 4 squares, this is your seed for your straight across repeat. All of the outer sides of the original square when placed together should match up, and create a seamless repeated pattern running straight across. This example was created for my fall collection earlier this year, for fabric.
Here is another example for you. I worked the following up in photo shop.
Shown here is “Autumn Leaves” on Eco Canvas. A fantastic silky feel, tough enough for a dog bed but soft enough for a table setting. I ordered some myself and stitched up some table settings for a friend.
There you have it. A seamless repeated pattern. My favorite pattern is a 1/4″ drop repeating every 3 times. It breaks up the straight across look. Perhaps you would like to know more about patterns and how to design them. If so just connect with me here, I will be talking about them in the future. In the mean while thank you for joining me here and reading along. See you tomorrow!
Have a creative day
Using watercolor for texture.
Where to begin. A LOT of what I do is intuitive. I would say an important point would be to know your watercolors and brushes and what they do. Play around with them. Some paints, like rose madder, have a grainy look to them when applied, so if you have not created a watercolor mixing chart then you may want to play around with one just to see how the paints interact with each other and the paper. Time consuming they are but worth it in the end. (Sounds like another blog post to me. Be sure and request it and I’ll be attentive to post it) If you are unsure about your colors, then pick the colors that you will use in your image, and do a small color mixing chart based on your image and color choice.
The first step to this layering process, and that is indeed what it is, layering, is to sketch out what your subject is. I am currently working on character development of another pig for my Super Pig series so I will be using Ollie the wonderful pig, for this example.
I use two glasses of clean water, one for washing and one for rinsing.
My paint selection today will be Windsor and Newton
- Cadmium Red
- Raw Umber
- Yellow Ochre
- Burnt Umber
- Burnt Sienna
- Ivory Black
- Sap Green
- Naples Yellow
- Canson 140 lb watercolor paper cold pressed
Everyone has their favorite brushes to work with. I recently purchased this floral brush size 6, and I love the point on it and the angle. I find that it makes great uneven strokes when held on the angles and moved across the paper with irregular movements.
The smaller brush is just used to add water to the image in a controlled area.
The pen, with a fine tip, is used to out line and create hairs.
- Titanium White
- Transparent Umber
After sketching the image I apply a base color. Naples yellow.
This is applied to the areas that the skin shows through. Then I start to layer on top of that. My second color is the Cadmium Red, that is applied on top of the naples yellow. I am careful to think of lighting as the shadows or contours of the pig will be slightly darker. I am also thoughtful in how much water and pigment I add. I can always add more as I go along.
Even now I can start to see the textures. I let the paint create the shadows etc. Those that I like, I add and continue to encourage. If there is a shadow that seems out of place, a bit of clean water and a soft scrub with the brush , dab of a paper towel will remedy it.
I continue working in this manner adding little layers over the contours of the subject. Seeing shadows develop and working with them.
This little rooter, has been in something green. Grass perhaps? Who knows.
Don’t stop now. Next comes the darker pigments. This will help get more couture and texture in the image. I am sure that you will develop your own style and sometimes the best strokes are happy accidents. So just keep at it and work with it. Remember that when it dries there will be irregularities when you add more paint. If you need a smooth transition keep it wet. Here are the next few steps all together so that you can see.
Be careful not to over work. Its easy to do. At this point I start to out line and tidy up. I wait until the image is dry, to prevent feathering of the ink. I do sometimes use a heat gun and hold it back from the image. Holding it too close will cause your paper to warp and buckle. Using a 140 lb weight paper will help in the reduction of buckling.
This is the finished product. Ollie. I say that loosely, because I can sometimes catch something that needs to be worked in etc.
And there you have it. No mediums used, just watercolor. Layering can be a wonderful way to create shadows and texture. Study your subject. Fall in love with it. Appreciate different aspects of it that make is special, then use those aspects when your painting.
As always have a wonderful and creative day.
Art supplies have been purchased from Dick Blick and local art supply stores.
Where Does Creativity Come From?
Just about anywhere.
For me I used to think it fell from the sky, and in a way it does. But I have to be ready to catch it. I meditate, and learn to quite my mind, so I can hear when she, creativity, softly knocks at the door to my imagination. I look for it in people who make me smile and laugh. I keep my studio a “negative energy free” zone. I cultivate things that are positive. I am a gardener, ever tilling the soil, pulling weeds, planting seeds, trimming back, and harvesting. Creativity can come at unexpected times. In the darkest times, or the best of times. It can speak through anyone. It can come when your looking for it and when your not.
Keep them close, like your favorite brushes, and paints.
I am not one who has a large group of friends, just the opposite. In honesty, I can be a bit closed off, in my head so to speak. But those close to me are fantastic humans. They inspire me. Enter my friend, Jim West (you can follow him on FB). His personality spoke to me through his photography and the fact that he used to live in Ireland for a bit. His FaceBook feed is always upbeat and positive. His adventures are endless (so is his energy). Evidently he saw my images and they also struck a cord in him, just like his photography did in me. My art made him happy, and he acted on that, and reached out to me. His joy and happiness over my images started a much need fire in my creative soul. (Ohhhh Jim you will never know). But let me give a shout out to Jim right now, and some of the things that he does.
This man is truly inspired, and he lets that passion infect others. Thank you Jim for infecting me. What does he do you ask? Inspires and Travels. He takes people to fantastic destinations all over the world and introduces them to accomplished artisans. He pulls back the curtain, and lets creativity in. Here is an excerpt from his page in regards to his most recent endeavor “Destination Craft with Jim West” a fantastic travel show that they just finished shooting: “The show will not be your typical craft show that you have seen on television before. We are actually traveling to different countries around the world and learning crafts firsthand from master artists. We are traveling to Bali to learn batiking from master batik artists, woodcarving, painting, and weaving. We will learn pasta making from an Italian chef in Tuscany and take a lesson in mosaics from a seventy five year old master artist in his workshop in Florence. Our journey will bring us to Guatemala where we will learn about back-strap weaving from master weavers and embroidery from master embroidery artisans. We will paint flowers on a canvas in Monet’s Garden in France as we learn from a master French artist and enjoy a French cooking class in addition to quilting and emboidery. We’ll even travel on a cruise where in each stop we will feature a special craft from that country or area of the world. The first season we will visit 13 countries and share up to 52 different crafts!”
Right?? So how could you not be inspired by all that?
How about a chance to win a free trip?
Now would you like to be able to get a wonderful e-magazine, FREE. By the way there is in article about yours truly…….ME! So check this out!!! Lots of other artist also and more photo’s about trips and things on the horizon from Jim West and Destination Craft.
When I told this to Super Pig, well that pig wanted to go and meet this mad genius. So Super pig set off on an adventure of their own. Bags packed and friends in tow, this little pig is off for an adventure.
Until next time, have a creative day.
Special Thank you To Jim West
- Information on Jim’s Travel Tours can be found