7 Tips On Stippling

Here are a few things I’ve learned as a stipple artist:

   1. Before you even begin get into a Zen state of mind. This is not a craft for the speedy and the quick. You really do have to prepare your mind to slow down and be in it for the long haul. Think of it as meditation. If you have to start off with doing it for only 10-20 minutes at at time, that’s fine. Take breaks and then come back to it. Whatever you do don’t  force it otherwise you’ll end up hating the drawing and spend the rest of your time just wishing you could hurry up and finish.
   2. When you do your underlying linework don’t make the lines too dark. You want your lines to be light but visible otherwise they’ll be a pain to erase after you lay down your ink and you may inadvertently erase some of your ink, dulling your drawing.
   3. Don’t tense up. Holding your pen tighter won’t help you get done any faster. You want a slightly loose grip with a moderate stippling pace so that your hand won’t tire quickly.
   4. Whenever you’re not stippling put your cap back on your pen or put it away, even if you’re just reaching for a drink. I’ve had one too many mishaps from simply reaching for my phone or moving to pet my cat only to look back at my drawing and find unintended pen marks on it.
   5. Work in small sections at a time. I’ve found that covering the portion of the drawing that I’m not working on with a piece of paper keeps me from feeling overwhelmed at how much I have to stipple and focused on the portion that I’m working on. Plus the paper keeps the oils from your hand from getting on the drawing.
   6. If you get sleepy go to bed or take a nap. Don’t try to push through it. Trust me, stippling while sleepy is a sure way to end up with mistakes.
   7. Most importantly….BREATHE…and always keep a charged up mp3 player or iPod loaded with some good music handy.

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Pen and ink artist inspired by Nature, Beauty, Spirit and Song.

4 thoughts on “7 Tips On Stippling”

  1. Just having a look at your earliest posts. I wish I could still do this sort of work. I was an artist most of my life but my hands shake and my eyesight is challenged now by the start of cataracts, so for those and one other reason (that I’ve written about albeit briefly, in my blog) I’ve switched over now to fabric crafts. You’re very good at stippling and pointillism and I think you’re right to do these small and take your time. When I used to do this work I wouldn’t eat or sleep and oh boy, did it take ages… and yes, you end up feeling irritable and making mistakes!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry to hear that physical issues now prevent you from drawing but it’s good to know that you are keeping your creative fire going with fabric crafts. Every now and then I ask myself what could I do artistically if I couldn’t draw anymore due to something like arthritis or poor eye sight (which runs in my family). I think I would get back into sculpting and pottery, which is something I used to do in my early years in college. I still carve so I would still do that. I can’t imagine not doing something artistic so I would find something despite my limitations.

      Liked by 1 person

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