Artistcellar Blog

Imagine. Create. Enjoy.

Hey everyone! I got to play around with Faber Castell Gelatos and Ranger Distress Crayons so thought I would do a review of them and comparison between the two. 

First up: Distress Crayons. They come in packs of five in lots of different color palettes (I’m using set one). They’re really smooth and creamy and so fun to use! I made a rainbow that could be used as a background to test all the colors. 

Coloring with them is almost like using colored pencils because they don’t really blend together, but layer over each other to make new colors. They don’t smudge after you put them down on paper, which is great if you don’t want them to smudge around (but not great if you want to smudge them to blend them).

If you do want to blend them a bit more, they are water soluble. The water picks up some of the pigment but leaves your original marks behind, they’re like watercolor pencils. 


Of course I had to try to draw some faces with them. Here’s a quick one. I don’t think they’re that good for drawing on their own because they’re so soft that it’s hard to be very accurate with them. But still an interesting look. 


Now, Gelatos! Gelatos come in packs of twelve and include a brush and two blending sponges. They come in metallics, pastels, or brights. I used brights because it was the most comparable to the Distress Crayons I used and also the colors are just so pretty! Here’s my gelato rainbow. 

I think these colors are brighter - I don’t even doubt that a few of them would glow under a blacklight. They blend together and almost create new colors as you use them. If Distress Crayons were like colored pencils in how you have to layer them, these are a lot more like paint or oil pastels. You can use the blending sponges to smudge them together for a really pretty smooth look. Or you can use your finger - I put that in for a comparison to the distress crayons. 

Gelatos are also water soluble. They’re similar to the distress crayons in how they act under water. I tested out some water on the right side here. 

I made a face with Gelatos too. I kind of liked using these better, I like how the colors blend. They’re definitely even harder to draw accurately with because they’re really wide though.


I took some more side by side pictures to show the differences more clearly. Here are a few squares in yellow and pink to show what I meant by how they blended differently:


Here’s both of them with water. I think they’re pretty similar in that aspect.


They both look fantastic on tinted paper too!

I have to say I like the Gelatos better because some of my favorite things to use in my art are bright colors and lots of smooth blending. I think Distress Crayons are also fun to use, and both of them have so many possibilities with how they can be used!

Hello again!

Today I’m playing around with the Faber-Castell graphite aquarelle pencils. They’re like watercolor pencils, but in greyscale and better for creating different values than colors. They’re really fun to use! 

I used them to draw a few faces just 'cause faces are my favorite thing to draw. I first wanted to make a quick sketch to test them out on thinner paper but I got really carried away and it turned into a full drawing… here’s the steps I like to take with pencil sketching.

First, I do a loose sketch in a light pencil, like HB. (Remember the H is harder and lighter, then B’s are softer and darker, and the higher the number in front of the H/B is, the softer/harder or darker/lighter the pencil is.)

After that I went in with 4B to define everything. This set has HB, 2B, 4B, 6B, and 8B if you want to use every one for really even shading. 

 

 


I used an 8B then to make really deep shadows. I think that these pencils make really nice sketch pencils on their own without the water, they get really nice and dark and feel a bit more like colored pencils.


Then I went in with water. I used a normal brush like the kind that comes with the pack, but I think a water brush would be great to use too. If you’re really into watercolor, you’d be great at this step, the pencils act a lot like watercolor does. 

The darker pencils create a darker black once you wet them, which is why it’s good to use the different pencils rather than to use one pencil with different pressure. I tried to push the water along with the lines I made to control the shading, it's hard to make it look neat! Putting one big wash over it keeps the darker lines and creates an even gray layer, which I used more around the outsides and on the hair. I think these pencils would also look great and be easier to use with a more loose style. 

Since the paper got a little bubbly, I tried another drawing on watercolor paper and repeated the same steps for shading as before. 

The watercolor paper definitely worked better with the water. You can also go back and add in more details with dry pencil again on top.

I experimented with colors after that… I tried alcohol markers on one, and just put a layer of even color on top since the pencils already create the value. I think it would work better if I had less aquarelle pencil underneath because it came out a little muddy. Or maybe even a marker base and the pencils on top?

I also added colored pencils to the other one. I bet that using watercolor pencils on top or even also as a base layer would be a cool look.

I liked playing with these pencils and there’s so many ways you could use them! I’d love to see even more combinations with other mediums and styles. Overall they’re pretty great pencils and lots of fun to use.

Hello Creative One!

Have you heard of the chakras or the chakra system of the human body? Even though I have been learning about the chakras off and on for the past fifteen years, a little review is often helpful.

According to the dictionary, the chakras are “(in Indian thought) each of the centers of spiritual power in the human body”. There are seven major chakras that run from the base of the spine to the crown of the head. These seven chakras correlate with our development, as well as our current health and wellness.

Artistcellar so wisely has created a 6 x 6 inch and a pocket set of the Chakra Series Stencils. I love both sets, but today I am using the Chakra Series Pocket Stencils to work on an art journal page.

I am interested in journaling about the chakras, as the creative process of making art and writing down information helps me to remember.

Today, I am working solely on correlating the chakra symbols with their representative colors. They just so happen to be similar to rainbow colors, which is appealing to my eyes.

Once I put the seven circles on my journal page and painted them in with watercolor (see image at the top of this post), I then let them dry.

Next, I used the Chakra Series Pocket Stencils as both a reference from which to draw, and as a template to trace.

I love how the Artistcellar packaging has the stencils labeled for reference, too. That’s so helpful.

So, from the bottom up, we have:

1stChakra-Root-Red

2ndChakra-Sacral-Orange

3rdChakra-Solar Plexus-Yellow

4thChakra-Heart-Green

5thChakra-Throat-Blue/Turquoise

6thChakra-Third Eye-Indigo

7thChakra-Crown-Violet

Next, I wanted to try out the new Neon Watercolor paints I got at Target, so I filled in a light wash around the chakras like so:

Finally, I filled in the other upward angles with a variety of Dye-Na-Flow, Distress Stain, and watercolor paint.

For now, my page is complete. I look forward to continuing my exploration into art journaling the chakras!

May your chakras be well aligned, free flowing, and balanced!

Blessings to you! 

Briana of OrangeSpiralArts.com

Hello all!

For this week's project I started working on a couple portrait of my friends, Arlo and Ruby.

This isn't just any portrait though, I wanted to create them in my own little character style, so I started with some rough sketches using some of their qualities. They are both unique, so it was pretty easy to pick out some great qualities to highlight.

From there, I used watercolors to add the first wash of colors.

Then, I picked three Artistcellar stencils - Cathedral Plans: Reims Plan, Blocks: Tiles, and Labyrinth: Crete. I used modeling paste and a palette knife to create incredible texture with the stencils. In fact, this has to be my absolute favorite way to use Artistcellar stencils - as background and texture elements to my paintings.

Once dry, I added even more watercolor - and watching it travel between the raised modeling paste really makes my soul sing.

To incorporate even more color I started incorporating acrylic paint into the portraits and the flowers.

From here, another one of my favorite techniques is to put down some watercolor on top of dried acrylic (you can see this in the flowers) then I spritz it with water and let it run and melt on the page. To me, this is relinquishing control... and I think that is an important and fun practice to integrate into my art.

So, to finish it all off I added some white highlights with a uniball signo UM-153.

I can't wait to send it to them. I hope they love it!

Hello again everyone!

This week I opted to work on my Artistcellar project at a favorite local coffee shop! Frank and David joined me, and while they played a game of Magic the Gathering, I sipped coffee and arted to my heart's content.  It's really fun to create art in places other than my own home - not only was I able to spend time with friends, but it also sparked conversation with a stranger as well. 

It's no secret I'm -always- inspired by poetry. I'm working with my beloved mineral paper, watercolors, colored pencils and Artistcellar Quasicrystals and Sacred Geometry 2 stencils to create a simple yet beautiful mandala poetry piece.

I started with a poem I love by Nayyirah Waheed (an absolute favorite!) and built around that idea with colors and textures. From stencils to dripping watercolor, I intuitively built it up until I had something I liked. 

This was one of my first attempts at colored pencils on the mineral paper. I tried it after all the watercolor had a chance to totally dry. I will say my final verdict is it's not my favorite - but I don't hate it, either. I think I might like it for smaller details, and to stick to watercolor on the fill in's. Like in the flower petals! 

Either way, I'm really happy with my final piece. It was simple and meditative, yet it's fun to look at too. 

Where do you like to go to create art outside of your home/studio?

Hello again my lovely lovelies!

This will be my last post from Wisconsin! I am sad that as usual my visit has gone by so fast.

When I am home I spend a lot of time with my family and we spend a lot of time outside. The beauty of my home (to me) is unmatched and I have lived and visited many places. We are surrounded by nature and creativity runs through all of us in our own ways. 

That is why I would like to show you some art from my nephew, and how he used the mineral paper I brought with me! He has a page over on facebook called Corpse cove art studios and lately he has been playing with spray paint! 

These are the 3 pieces he created using spray paint and mineral paper.

He is self taught using spray paint like this, learning by watching videos on YouTube and facebook. Also another shocker, these pieces were created one week after trying this medium for the first time. His talent amazes me!

As for myself I have been enjoying the nature around me. Just as a recap, my travel supplies I used are as follows:

There is a doe on my dad's property that has twins! I have been trying to get pics but the window screens keep getting in the way, and if I open the door they scatter. So instead I decided I would paint one if the fawns, I think she turned out pretty cute!

What many people forget about this area of Wisconsin is that we have a lot of rocky bluffs sticking out in our landscape. I wanted to make a quick entry in my journal just to record the colors of the day. I love how the rocky peaks clash with the blue of the sky and the green of the woods.

Another one of my favorites in the area are the Sandhill cranes that are found all around this area with their young this time of year. I would get you a picture but last year when I tried a mad mama crane chased me in the truck for about 2 miles when I got too close to her chick. So I don't do that anymore! Lol. I wanted to get a detailed head in there and since I used my small journal I couldn't really fit any babies in.

I hope you have enjoyed my journal art as well as the amazing talent of my nephew!

Big hugs and mushes to you!

Shana Banana

Hello my lovelies

I am here in Wisconsin visiting my family! I have been here and Minnesota for about 2 weeks and have been loving the beauty of nature up here and all the green I miss since I now live in Arizona.

My youngest sibling Xe is also an amazing artist and loves nature as much  I do. We took a little day trip to a park in Minnesota called Carol park, which is on a dirt road, and has a trail that leads down to a small bubbling stream and falls.

It was so beautiful and we spent hours just sitting by the stream talking and painting. I created my piece in my large Jane journal using my Koi watercolor kit, prismacolor pencils and my white signo gel pen.

I love that with my limited supplies I was able to create something that I think shows the tranquility of the area we were sitting.

While in Minnesota I started a 2nd journal spread using the same supplies along with a black water-soluble pen, which I then finished in Wisconsin. I love creating these whimsical faces and love that the use of my 2 chakra pocket stencils sets help tie the 2 pages in the spread together and give the peaceful whimsy I was trying to create.

While at my daddies house in Wisconsin, I found a 4 leaf clover and it inspired me to create a little journal page in my small Jane journal, using my Koi watercolor kit, of clover while my dad and I were sitting and chatting.

My favorite place to go is fishing with my daddy. We have been fishing the same private cranberry Marsh since before I can remember and going there always makes my heart fill with love for my family and home.

I created this page as a reminder of how I should feel all the time. I used my "seek" pocket stencil for its boldness to catch my own eye when I page through my journal and left the rest calm and abstract.

I have created some other doodly pages but these are my favorite in the mix. This weekend I plan on pulling out my mineral paper when I spend time with my nephew Dustin, he is also an amazing artist and I know we will be creating a lot while we are together! So watch for me in 2 weeks to see the rest of my vacation art!

Big hugs and mushes to you from Wisconsin!

xMwah!

Shana banana

Hello beautiful souls,

I had so much fun with this latest piece. I guess I have been kind of on a yellow kick too. I really dig the nice warm happy colors in this piece. I did a TON of layering and took a lot of pics to show the transformation. Let's dive in 

First off I started out with a nice variation of warm hues of: pinks, oranges, and yellows in water colors. I received the Arabian Nights series stencils and totally fell in LOVE!  For the first layer I used the "Celestial " stencil which is awesome because it also has a sacred geometry shape in in like "Square Rose".  

Next I did some layering with the"Shooting Stars" stencil. I used some nice purples and blues to simulate a nice sky look.

I even discovered something super cool with my hula hoop tape! I cut out some little dots with a paper punch I have. I used my heat gun and blasted then with some heat. The heat made rainbow colors appear!

Next I added some white sprays to create some opaque layers.

Then I kept adding on the layers.

I love how you can see the white spatters over the hula hoop tape dot! Here is a shot of the background before I started adding the 3D elements.

I love adding texture and 3D elements to my pieces so I used my cricut machine and cut out these BA flower of life shapes and these moroccan style stars.

I used my heat gun on the  Angelina Film to create the crinkles. Making crinkles in the film allows the light to really bounce all over the piece and create some gorgeous texture.

I call this piece "Inner Wisdom". I took so many photos to really capture all of the incredible design elements.

I was super excited my idea with layering texture paste and the Angelina film turned out. The crinkly film didn't let the texture paste lay super flat, but I used a mechanical pencil tip to remove the messy parts of the paste. I then painted the texture paste with water colors, and used some Viva Decor Inka Gold to add some pretty gold highlights.

Here is the finished piece in the sunlight.

I even took an Insta video to capture all of the details 

How do you like to use your Angelina Film? What ways do you add 3D elements to create depth and visual appeal

Love, light, and creativity,

Genea

Hello all!

This week I have some new mediums to play alongside my artistcellar stencils.

To start, I grabbed an 8 x 10 piece of hot-pressed Fabriano watercolor paper. This paper is nice in that it is both 140lb and hot pressed AND it doesn't break the bank. Good watercolor paper tends to be really expensive, and while worth it - I can't always afford it!

Next, I started auditioning some Artistcellar stencils on the page. Here, I'm using Tibet Series: Buddha Eyes, Cathedral Plans: Notre Dame and Cathedral Plans: Amiens Plan.  The Cathedral Plans series stencil is a longtime favorite of mine for backgrounds. They are so versatile and I've found use for them in many different paintings.

With a palette knife, I scraped Golden Glass Bead Gel through the stencil. Let me tell you -- this stuff is awesome! Glass beads inside the medium really shimmer and shine and it works beautifully with the stencils!

I let it dry completely, and then I started dripping strings of Golden Tar Gel throughout... the tar gel appears white, but it will dry pretty much clear and adds great texture (similar to creating lines with a hot glue gun). 

Next I used watercolors, mermaid markers and alcohol to add color and even more texture. To create the cell-like effect I simply dipped a brush in the alcohol and then stamped it on the page. Yum!

For extra accent, I used a bit of Inka Gold and some Dina Wakely acrylic paint as the finishing touches. 

This is a super texture rich page and it was such a fun way to experiment with new supplies and old favorites. 

 

Oh hello!

So -- I am a person that likes to art anywhere AND everywhere! This means arting in the car, stuffing journals into my purse, going to parks to paint, wherever I can dream it I will go and I will art there!

Sometimes my "traveling" really just means I won't be working in my art studio and instead I will be on the porch, or the couch or the dining room table.

Except... it's hard to carry all that stuff around. Journals, paints, gessos and mediums. It's really a lot to cart around, but I found a method to it! So, I found a handy little carrier on amazon. Officially, it's called a "16-inch tool bag". It's priced roughly around $20-$25. Not too shabby! Added bonus, it's super strong because it is meant for heavy tools -- and it has TONS of pockets. It is perfect for carrying around stencils, acrylic paints, pens, pencils -- you name it. 

Here's a little video on how I've packed mine up:

Today we went to the range with some friends and it was a beautiful day outside. I opted to take my travel kit along for some car arting! This painting was started and finished away from my art studio.

Here's a little timelapse video of some of the process:

To see my other artsy musings and have access to things like zines, prints, videos galore, visit my Patreon!: www.patreon.com/PanArt

 

 

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