Google+ peggy aplSEEDS: February 2010

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Drawing a Face: Tracing Technique

When I made a tutorial about making an ATC portrait in this post, I realized that the part about making a pencil sketch could be difficult for some.  So, I decided to make a tutorial about tracing a face as a guide for your portrait. You can use this technique for ATCs as well as for bigger pieces.

Tracing is something I used to do as a young girl making paperdolls.  At first, I didn't know how to draw the whole body so I would just trace some drawing or photo of a woman and use the tracing to make a paperdoll.  Eventually, I was able to draw my paperdolls without tracing.  Perhaps, if you try this technique of tracing and studying the proportions of the pictures you trace, you will later be able to draw faces without tracing.

1.  First, you need to find picture that is the right size, something that will fit the size of your ATC (or whatever other size of artwork you are making).  It should be a picture with strong contrasts so that it will be easy to trace.  There are a lot of pictures available in magazines and even in the newspaper.  Here is a picture I found in a newspaper...

2.  Trace the main lines of the newspaper photo with a soft, not so sharp pencil.  You don't have to be so accurate since we're only using the picture to help us draw a face.  We're not actually trying to draw the face itself. 

(Sorry for the bad photos, so full of shadows!  I was making this in bad lighting conditions. Oh well, better bad pictures than none, right?)

3.  After tracing the newspaper photo, flip the tracing paper over such that the side which has the pencil lead touches the card you are making your portrait on.   Position your tracing on the card and perhaps you can tape it to the card so that it won't move while you're transferring the lines.  

4.  Trace heavily over the pencil lines with a pen or pencil so that the pencil lead marks the card under it. I'm using a card that I've coated with wall putty, as I described in this post.  

The picture below shows how the card should look after you trace over the pencil marks.  Notice the faint pencil lead markings that you have made on the card, a mirror image of the picture you traced.


5.  Now you can trace over the pencil marks with a pen or even just a ballpen. You can make changes in the final pen lines and you can add details like eyelashes and eyebrow hairs.

6.  Erase the extra pencil lines with a kneaded eraser.

7.  Looking at the photo you are using to help you draw a face, use watercolor to add volume.  Notice the dark areas in the picture.  Remember your ATC is a mirror image so your shadows should be on the opposite side.  Don't worry about uneven watercolor shades.  We're not making a photo realistic painting (People may not believe it's a painting if it looks too much like a photograph just like this artist's work).

7. Add colored pencils in various shades (just as described in this post.)

The finished card...
You can also try out this technique with photos of family and friends which you print out to the right size.

I hope this was helpful.  Let me know if you try this out.  I would love to hear from you!  
(Linking this up with Tutorial Tuesday)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Hot Air Balloons

Last weekend, we took an early morning trip out of the city to attend a Hot Air Balloon Festival.  There were balloons in different shapes, sizes and colors.  Aside from the usual balloon shape, there was a turtle, a sun, a beer bottle and even a farmer in a barn!

Watching the teams set up their equipment, blowing air to fill up the balloons, and heating the air up so that the balloons could soar up in the air was a fascinating sight.  Hot air can make such big, big balloons rise up to the air.  Amazing!  

Thinking about hot air reminded me of the time we were in Thailand and we experienced lighting up our own paper Sky Lanterns.  What a wonderful sight in the night sky!

Isn't it interesting that the word hot can convey both positive and negative things?  Hot air can make these beautiful balloons and lanterns soar through the air but hot air can also mean "empty and usually boastful talk."  "Hot" can mean something popular or successful, but it can also mean trouble, like when we say we're "in hot water" or "in the hot seat". 

In life, we can find ourselves in challenging situations.  These situations can affect us in different ways and we can respond to them either positively or negatively.  Can we turn our "Good Fridays" into "Easter Sundays"?  Can we use the "hot water" situations in our life to make us soar to the heavens?
I hope so!
 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Season of Grace

In life, we go through different seasons.  Christians also celebrate different seasons in the Church calendar. Yesterday, as Catholics, we started the season of Lent.  Our foreheads were marked with ashes in the shape of a cross.  It reminds us that "Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return" (Genesis 3:19).   I think that is something good to remember, to remind us of what is important in life.   For me, Lent is a good time to "fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." (2 Corinthians 4:18)

Many of the things that seem so important to us will pass, just like the seasons.  But "what is unseen is eternal" and will always remain.  As I thought of this, I was reminded of this beautiful song...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Vintage Moth's Excited Winner!

The Vintage Moth is Abbie's wonderful blog where you can get FREE vintage and antique images for your projects. Abbie offered a lovely Antique Egg Plate Print for her OWOH giveaway (It is an actual antique, NOT a reproduction).  And guess who won!!!  Yup!  I am The Vintage Moth's excited winner!

Thank you very much, Abbie for your generous giveaway!   I am honored and blessed to win it!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Happy Day!

Well, this is certainly a happy day!  Another surprise in my inbox!  Martina from artymarty emailed me with news that I won her supplementary prize!  It is a beautiful soldered pendant, something i have been wanting to try my hand at!  Last year, I even bought the supplies for soldering but never got around to starting.  Maybe this will give me added inspiration!
Thank you so much Martina, for your lovely pendant!  I'm so glad you decided to add another prize!

I won!

More excitement for me!  I received an email from Jenn of Just Jenn Designz informing me that I won her second prize giveaway, the Oriental Journey paper bead necklace.  Well of course, I am jumping up and down!  It is always nice to win something, isn't it?

But, more than just winning,  I found it interesting that I won this particular giveaway because I have been going to the Quezon City Jail every Thursday for the past five months (more about that in this post) and one of the things we've been trying to start is a livelihood program for the inmates.  We are going to have them make paper beads!  Isn't that interesting?  

Thank you, Jenn!  I am delighted to win this lovely necklace!

And the Winner is...

Wow, this has been an exciting past few weeks, traveling all over the world in my magic carpet.  It has been wonderful to "meet"  many different people and see what they've been doing and making.  I have been blessed with all the wonderfully encouraging comments my visitors have left me and I am so thrilled that some of you even decided to follow my blog!  Thank you very, very much!   Thank you also to Lisa, the Whimsical Bohemian, who organized this fantastic event.  

To pick my winner, I used  And the winner for my mixed media art work is... (drum roll, please)... altermyworld, who commented... "oh how gorgeous...add me pls."

Ang is a fellow member in ATCs for All, where I usually trade ATCs.  I was delighted when I picked her name because just last weekend, I saw a message she sent to me some time ago which said "can we trade sometime."  I even went to her gallery and saw her beautiful cards.  I decided I would ask for a trade as soon as I could! 

Congratulations, Ang!  My One World One Heart Lady will be making her way to you.  I am glad that she will be going to "
a wonderful loved home." 

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