A Bit of My Day, Art Techniques, Artist Gems, Thank You, WarmUps

Wednesday WrapUp NaNoWriMo Vibrant Acrylics


I’ve enjoyed providing each week a “Wednesday Warm Up,”— a day of usually quick drawing, inking, brushing as warm up to our serious art. I’ve been sharing a strategy to try each Wednesday using the iPad app ProCreate. I’ve decided to change it up a bit for a few Wednesday Wrap Up— a wrap up of my project tips for the past week or something I’ve learned that may also help others with the same #warmup4art hashtag.

This Month: NaNoWriMo

My CLmooc friends doodle every day. During November, my doodles will usually be from the writing for National Novel Writing Month: NaNoWriMo. My personal goal is for 2000 words a day until I reach the 50,000 words for NaNoWriMo. A goal of 1667 a day gets you to the magic 50,000 by November 30th. And it’s important to understand that his is just to write — not edit– just get the idea down so a story is written in thirty days. It’s quite exciting. I’ve written about my first experience years ago here, where I encourage teachers to let their students write: Let Them Write.

This Week’s Venture: An Acrylic’s Skillshare Class

As I continue my last year’s story So Says the River, I’m also always taking classes to expand my art techniques. So, the art for today’s doodle derived from the first project in a Skillshare class “Create Happy and Vibrant Acrylic Paintings on your iPad using Procreate’ by Brenda Bakker of the Netherlands.

I chose to illustrate the flowers from my NaNoWriMo — each family in the fantasy story wears a “crest” emblematic of their history. One of the families crest includes three flowers, each with two blue petals with protruding yellow stamens [see gallery above].

From Static Blues to a Vibrant Dance of Pixies

I loved how Brenda’s lesson helped me create the crest as a vibrant and active image of the three flowers. They seemed to be dancing in a meadow, and the patches of midnight blue reminded me of a dark night peeking through. And so the dancing flowers must be pixies sparkling up a dark night with dancing and celebration. And that became a story in a chapter of my book— a part of Angie’s story, and she had just been touched by dragons….

Values Adjustments

The most important part of the class is the last part of the project. With a layer of black at the top, the entire illustration transforms to monochrome in black/white values. With the monochrome view, you can see where the values either complement or clash. By applying an overlay layer above the drawing layers [below the value-black layer], and by brushing in areas in white or black to change the saturation and hue into more complementary colors, a more balanced background emerges. Until I did this, I did not like my illustration. But I was also on this overlay layer, and with an additional overlay layer, able to create “shadows” to the flowers so they popped out in their dance.  See the “red” alongside the stems— that’s the application of “white” over the clashing area.

I highly recommend this class. It really helped me loosen up my strokes and perfectionism and helped me create a more active and energetic illustration —- perfect for a magical pixie dance on a dark and dreary night. 

Video of Values Adjustments

And — the writing?

Of course, the idea for my art would not exist without the text of my draft novel, written each day. Here’s the excerpt to which these two illustrations evolved:


Angie’s Journal Entry, on the night of Elder Aiden’s passing

I took a deep breath as Grandma Rose taught me, to sense danger and find the others that are guides, pausing as pairs of yellow balls of light bounced ahead of me, leading me onwards along the deep green pathway into the meadow. With each step, the midnight blue brightened into dark magenta dazzling in flashes of multi-colored lights. Then the pairs of bright teal petals of the Innes family crest appeared in the path with each step, the pairs of yellow balls within each set of petals. All around me the teal shapes bobbed up and down and soon I could see bright emerald green stems whose outstretched leaves waved to me, holding themselves up and dropping down and I raised my hands and dropped them, swirling around as the teal petals floated up as the wings of the pixies swirling in a dance of the wee folk with me in the center, swirling and twirling in bright pinks and yellows and greens and reds all singing a song from his spirit passing—

I am now a rainbow
Guiding you below
To the story of the mountain
And a path you’ll need to know;

When a seed becomes unhidden,
And a friend will call in woe,
The path with friends you’ve bidden
Will guide him safely home.

Hold the story in your heart
Let its meaning grow
And when the time is needed
Share the way to bring him home.

I danced with the wee folk on and on singing the song beneath the sparkle of fairy lights in a dance at once one of mourning and one of celebration, a gift of life from my elder to something in my future.

Excerpt From
So Says the River E2 /So Says the Dragon
Sheri Edwards
This material is protected by copyright.
11.08.21 Writing Blog/Crosspost

Try It

So, that wraps up this Wednesday Wrap Up. This journey is one I’ve taken for ten years, so its a part of my life, and I hope these weekly posts will inspire you to join in– or start your own goal of writing and art, perhaps a storybook or poetry book with illustrations. It’s another way to share your beautiful work.

I hope this inspires you to join in NaNoWriMo — we can connect and inspire one another, sharing our illustrations and wondering about our twists and turns to hook our readers.

And please do try Brenda Bakker’s class. Thanks so much to Brenda Bakker for the Skillshare class on vibrant acrylics. 

I look forward to your sharing, and please continue to be a part of the  #warmup4art series to learn and enjoy our work together! See my sharing at IG @42Sheri and Twitter @42Sheri.

#NaNoWriMo #NaNoWriMo21 #NovDoodle #CLmooc #SoSaysTheRiver #SoSaysTheDragon #character #Angie #pixies #dancingflowers

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