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Speedpaint and new Art Journal Pages

Speedpaint video + a little about gouache

Last week I painted this floral pattern painting above. It was a wonderful, colorful and relaxing process that I wanted to share with you in this speedpaint. At the same time I was writing an article on gouache. I figured, why not record it as a voice-over to this video? I’m curious what you’ll think of this concept, so please let me know how you like it!

New Art Journal Pages

The past few months I’ve been so busy making online courses that I hardly had or took the time to work in my art journal for myself. But the more time went by without it, the more itchy and cranky I began to feel. It’s one thing making online classes for others, but it’s mighty important to keep refuelling your tank of creative energy. I had manoeuvred myself stuck before a self-imposed deadline and doing 5 online classes in a row proved to be a bit much. Or rather…5 online classes in a row is fine…not spending enough time on refuelling my own creative energy…now that is something that offers room for improvement for when I start working on the next online classes. We live, we learn, eh?

There is one huge advantage to letting yourself dry up creatively, though… The joy of rediscovering and replenishing that source inside! I did a whopping amount of art journal pages this weekend. Some were just tutorials by others to get me going (for some reason I always believe I need that after a time of drought and then I end up ignoring what’s being taught completely anyway…), one was an illustration I did for the theme “Resist” of this week’s Illustration Friday and two were pages that just popped up when I held a brush…

Red Noses

The first page I did began last Friday when I had discovered that my Indigo Schmincke Horadam watercolor had a deplorable lightfastness. This is something I’d never realised because for a long time I used the Cotman Indigo and never had much issues with lightfastness at all. On study, I found out that the Cotman actually consists of three lightfast pigments. So I figures I had to try and mix my own Horadam Indigo for commissions in the future.

This art journal page is the result of some smearing of a brush that had some paint left on it. The red noses, the shading and the beard I added yesterday.

Heads Up

This second page emerged spontaneously yesterday, when I was toying with some more mixes of self-made Indigo. I so love any mixes including mars black. I love the granulation and the cauliflower clouding. Most of the times you don’t want that. But in this art journal page, I purposely aimed for a lot of unseemingly watercolor behaviour.

The page seems grim. And yet the heads look up, the corners of the mouth curled up somewhat. It is definitely influenced by the fact that last Friday it was Liberation Day in our country. As always the media bombards the people with war, suffering and remembrance around that day. Rightfully so, of course. The War must never be forgotten. And the fact that the social and political climate so swiftly seems to swirl and bend towards such critical points again where hate rises and boils again, we must certainly be reminded of the gruesomeness of war. But as always in the week around Liberation Day I can’t help but feel heavy, worried, sad and disappointed in the repetition of facts despite what humanity could learn of history if only we wanted to.

So when I started out painting this dark scene, initially what I had in mind, was the scene from Schindler’s List where the women are taken into the shower and where they think they have ended up in the gas chambers. I wanted to depict the atrocity an inhumaneness of packing people like sardines for destruction. But as I was painting, something inside of me began to resist and fight the urge to depict atrocity. Rather than the movie frame of fear that I started out with the frame where the relief set in when rain, not poisonous gas came out of the showers began to push itself to the front of my mind. Did I really want to add to the fear? To the resentment? The disillusion? And with every next stroke of my brush the heads began to look up. The grimness is still in there. And the dark side. But the heads turned up. Because deep down inside I believe that we must always keep resisting our own hate and resentment. That we must rid ourselves of disillusion and instead fight to create good things in life for ourselves and the world around us.

Heads Up

This second page emerged spontaneously yesterday, when I was toying with some more mixes of self-made Indigo. I so love any mixes including mars black. I love the granulation and the cauliflower clouding. Most of the times you don’t want that. But in this art journal page, I purposely aimed for a lot of unseemingly watercolor behaviour.

The page seems grim. And yet the heads look up, the corners of the mouth curled up somewhat. It is definitely influenced by the fact that last Friday it was Liberation Day in our country. As always the media bombards the people with war, suffering and remembrance around that day. Rightfully so, of course. The War must never be forgotten. And the fact that the social and political climate so swiftly seems to swirl and bend towards such critical points where hate rises and boils again, we must certainly be reminded of the gruesomeness of war. But as always in the week around Liberation Day I can’t help but feel heavy, worried, sad and disappointed in the repetition of facts despite what humanity could learn of history if only we wanted to.

So when I started out painting this dark scene, initially what I had in mind, was the scene from Schindler’s List where the women are taken into the shower and where they think they have ended up in the gas chambers. I wanted to depict the atrocity and inhumaneness of packing people like sardines for destruction. But as I was painting, something inside of me began to resist and fight the urge to depict atrocity. Rather than the movie frame of fear that I started out with, the frame where the relief set in when rain, not poisonous gas came out of the showers began to push itself to the front of my mind. Did I really want to add to the fear? To the resentment? The disillusion? And with every next stroke of my brush the heads began to look up. The grimness is still in there. And the dark side. But the heads turned up. Because deep down inside I believe that we must always keep resisting our own hate and resentment. That we must rid ourselves of disillusion and instead fight to create good things in life for ourselves and the world around us.

Illustration Friday: Resist

Illustration Friday contribution

Finally I had time to sit down and do another illustration for Illustration Friday! I’ve missed doing that and it’s been a fab day working in between chores and errands. But the illustration is there. This week’s theme was “Resist”. I don’t think my illustration needs further explanation.

Below three process photos… Materials I used are graphite pencil, watercolor and black color pencil.

Color wheel and meeting my unknown sister

The unknown sister

Last Monday something VERY exciting happened. For the first time I met one of my YouTube followers in real life! Caroline visited our country and proposed to meet…which we did! We and our husbands spent an unexpected marvelous afternoon in the sun, on a terrace. It was so cool, it was as if I met the sister I never knew I had. Unbelievable how alike we were! As her husband later put it: “Twin sisters from different mothers, living in different countries!”

Sisterly love for paint and colors

Our husbands watched our shreeks of recognition with amusement, although I did feel for them a bit. It must be weird, sitting with two women who get absolutely over the moon talking about colors and paint. We made a trade…Caroline had brought me Daniel Smith yummies and I had filled a pretty palette of Old Holland blues for her… What more can you wish for? Great company AND great paint!!!

Daniel Smith color wheel

I had collected some Daniel Smith paints in the past months already, aiming to make some more study of pigments. I so enjoyed the triads I recently made that I decided to do a big color wheel. Even though it seemed easy, it wasn’t as easy as I’d thought. Turns out the red and yellow pigments were that much stronger than the blues that in mixing the gradients starting from blue weren’t blue enough to my liking. The wheel should have changed hues more gradiently…but here’s my inner perfectionist nagging. Because it’s downright beautiful anyway. And I love how it offers such fantastic insight into the color mixes that are possible with the six colors I’ve used.

My six colors

The colors I’ve used for this color wheel are all Daniel Smith: Hansa yellow light, Nickel azo yellow, Pyrrol scarlet, Permanent alizarin Crimson, Manganese blue hue and Phthalo blue (RS). I randomly picked a warm and cool of yellow, red and blue and purposely didn’t check which would best together for optimal result. I find that sometimes when you mix colors together that are not a perfect match, you end up getting the most surprising colors. The image above does not show the slight varieties in colors that the wheel really has. Scanners will only pick up that much, eh?

You can find a color wheel template a little further down this blog post ♥

Loyalty discount on upcoming class

Also I’ve been meaning to share with you the upcoming online class I’m working on “Mirror, mirror…”. It is an inspiring art  or art journaling class in which storybuilding is combined with gouache and mixed media techniques. It will air on 1 May. Instead of doing a pre-sale discount, I have decided to go for a loyalty discount. Newsletter readers and previous students of mine will find a 15% discount code in their newsletter. Simply because I love having you here! You don’t read my newsletter yet? No worries. You can sign up right here ♥

Color wheel instructions

If you’re looking to do a similar color wheel, Jane Blundell offers a wonderful template for making it on her website (which also offers a huge insight into the composition of the best possible palette of watercolors, by the way). For those who are working with Artist grade watercolor paint or who want to start doing so, Jane’s website really is worth a look if you want to learn more about the pigments you’re using.

New Color My Page Challenge + format review

A Kiss - watercolor

Big Color My Page Challenge news!!!

Hi everyone! It’s been a bit quiet on my blog, but I’ve been brooding and producing…I have a new online art class coming up (news and sign up at the end of this week!!!) and I’ve reconstructed the Color My Page Art Challenge a bit…

Color My Page Challenge revamp

Things are going to change in the Color My Page Art Challenge…for the better!!! The challenge is going to be a format that works better for me, and even more important… A LOT better for you!

No more waiting

From now on I will use a color combination of a certain brand and kind of paint in a demo video, explaining a little about the paint and the pigments that I’m using. After that, you can immediately grab the chance to do your own painting/journal page in these or similar colors and paints. And share your art in the group, of course!
This cuts out the waiting time we had so far. You can start working on the challenge immediately after you’ve seen the video. And also…if there is a giveaway…it will happen straigth away…no more waiting…win, win, win!!!

The Kiss #2 - watercolor

Why the change?

Well, as you must have noticed, nothing much appeared here lately. The reason for that is that the format didn’t work well for me. The bottle neck being the Golden High Flow challenge…It turned out I really didn’t like the paint. It wasn’t at all what I’d expected it to be. And on top of that, the color combo didn’t work for me…it gave me an artist’s block every time I sat down with them.
It got me thinking and then I realised that all this waiting could impossibly be inspiring for you guys…and it is YOU who I set up this group for!!! To inspire you…to get you into motion… So…high time to blow a fresh wind through this challenge!

I hope you’re in for the ride, so read on and you have a chance of winning the top Kiss if you join the challenge♥!!!!

The Kiss #3 - watercolor

The New Color My Page Art Challenge + Giveaway

Here is how it works

I made a video for you, which you can find below this text. In it I demonstrate working with 3 colors of Daniel Smith watercolor: Indian Yellow, Quinacridone Coral and Cobalt Teal. This video is meant to inspire you do do a painting or journal page in these paints or in any paints you have that look a bit like these. In this case any yellow, red and blue watercolor paint would do. Once you’re done painting, you can post your painting in the designated closed facebook challenge group.

Giveaway

In the demo video I did a little painting that will be the prize in this giveaway! I will choose a winner randomly from anyone who is signed up for my Mandymail (so that I can get in touch with you through e-mail when you win) and posts their work in the group!!!

You can find the closed Color My Page Art Challenge Group here.

You can sign up to MandyMail here.

Color My Page Art Challenge #5 – Golden High Flow acrylics

Time for another Color My Page Art Challenge!

And this time I’ll demo Golden High Flow acrylic paint using a watercolor-like technique.

In the video below you will find a bit more information about what the Color My Page Art Challenge is and why I started it and I introduce to you this challenge’s paint.

YOU can vote MY palette in the poll!

In this poll below you can vote for up to 5 colors you would like to see me paint the demo in. When you’re done voting, you will see the results thus far.

Which Golden High Flow transparent acrylic colors would you love to see me demo in the next video?
  • Dioxazine Purple 16%, 29 votes
    29 votes 16%
    29 votes - 16% of all votes
  • Phtalo Green Blue Shade 14%, 25 votes
    25 votes 14%
    25 votes - 14% of all votes
  • Phtalo Blue Green Shade 12%, 22 votes
    22 votes 12%
    22 votes - 12% of all votes
  • Quinacridone Red 10%, 19 votes
    19 votes 10%
    19 votes - 10% of all votes
  • Shading Grey 10%, 19 votes
    19 votes 10%
    19 votes - 10% of all votes
  • Transparen Red Iron Oxide 10%, 18 votes
    18 votes 10%
    18 votes - 10% of all votes
  • Hansa Yellow Medium 8%, 15 votes
    15 votes 8%
    15 votes - 8% of all votes
  • Transparent Yellow Iron Oxide 8%, 15 votes
    15 votes 8%
    15 votes - 8% of all votes
  • Transparent Brown Iron Oxide 6%, 12 votes
    12 votes 6%
    12 votes - 6% of all votes
  • Naphthol Red Light 6%, 11 votes
    11 votes 6%
    11 votes - 6% of all votes
Total Votes: 185
Voters: 50
January 23, 2017 - January 30, 2017
Voting is closed
© Kama

Facebook group

Do you like being challenged, art-supply wise? Do you dare painting with a limited color palette like I do? And would you like to see how others pull it off and share your own work? Then join the designated closed facebook group! You can find it here!

Giveaway

You can be the winner of the painting I’m going to make in the demo video. To partake, leave a comment below this blog post! And if you want to be kept up-to-date on new challenges, demo videos, workshops, tutorials, giveaways, then go here to sign up for my not-so-frequent newsletter!

Life Book 2017 Sneak Preview

Life Book Sneak Preview

Life Book 2017 has started!!! I checked out the first two lessons and it promises to be a good, very good year!!!

I’m teaching two lessons in this wonderful year-long art journaling course…the bonus lesson I’ll keep secret for now, but my main lesson is really, really cool…it’s a wonderful watercolor & mixed media technique like you can see in the page above. I’ve decided to give you a sneak preview; in the latest newsletter you’ll find a step-by-step photo series of a painting like the one that will feature in my Life Book lesson.

If you’re not getting my newsletter yet, you can still sign up. When you do, I’ll make sure this step-by-step Sneak Preview lands in your mail box! To sign up, go here!

Discount

Oh, and before I forget…there are only 5 days left to grab the 20% discount which makes this already affordable course extreme value for money! You can find the coupon code in the newsletter!

What resolutions did you make?

I never took New Year’s resolutions seriously. But this year I have one.

new year's resolutions art journal page

Racing cars and hyper-focus

You see, I’m kind of a formula-1 racing car. I carefully engineer my plans and then I take off in a dash, leaving people amazed at the speed and noise with which I go. This kind of productivity is made possible by a hyper-focus mode which deepens and intensifies my concentration and pushes away any needs in favor of that focus. Those are the days that my daughter’s return from school catches me by surprise  because only then do I realize I lost track of the clock and totally forgot about lunch or any other needs. Days like that can easily string into periods of weeks at a time in which I get a lot done.

Pit stops and gravel traps

But, as with most racing cars, I need to make a lot of pit stops to repair damage and refuel. And, quite to my embarrassment, I often land in the gravel traps. Worn out to the bone, the ultra-productive weeks take their toll with one or two weeks of physical misery. Then a fatigue knocks at my door so deep that I sometimes fear it will drag me under the pavement in the back yard. Then stray viruses bite themselves a way into my flesh, periods refuse to wait for their time and weaknesses blow themselves up into undeniable proportion because my body won’t resist anyway.

The amount of energy it takes to get back on a roll after crashing is unspeakable. Starting up costs way more energy than driving.

Steam trains

I met quite a few steam trains over the years. People who are the perfect opposite of me in life and work. They take time to do things and have no trouble resolving to do something ‘some time’. Or the week after. And they have the audacity to take time for family, friends, hobbies, long baths, days out and such luxuries. Stuck inside my own frame of reference I used to think that such a laid back way of working wouldn’t get them far. But now, a few years later, studies have been finished, new career paths have been trodden and new companies are up and running. In other words, the steam trains got as far as I did. But with one big difference: they took things easy, enjoyed life more, stayed in the race with a pit stop or two and managed all of that without crashing. So in the end, they didn’t spend half the amount of energy I did to get just as far.

Lesson learned, resolution made

So, being a steam train isn’t that bad after all, it seems. It’s impossible to change one’s character, but I’ve seen enough gravel the past years. So this year I’m going to try and say bye-bye to my inner racing car and embrace my inner steam train instead!

I’m curious; what new-year’s resolutions did you make?

Thanks for visiting my site. Welcome!

I'm Mandy van Goeije, a Dutch artist/illustrator/teacher. With a head full of inspiration I relentlessly try to find ways of expressing myself in imagery and language, helping others to do the same.

If you have any questions, you can e-mail me here.

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