Springing Into Something New

Happy Spring. I don’t know how it is in your neck of the woods but the days have been sunny and the temps in the 40s, spring is definitely in the air. This is a time for new beginnings and new adventures so I’m bringing in the season with something new to offer: downloadable mini prints, more commonly known as “printables”. Printables are digital reproductions of original art that you can purchase, download to your computer and print yourself on your home printer and then frame it or take it to a print shop and have it professionally printed, mounted and framed just the way you like.

This is a convenient way for me to offer more variety to my creative goods as well as give people more options to how the final overall look of the piece appears.

I’m offering a mini printable of “Polar Bears” (shown above) for free to anyone who signs up for my newsletter on my website (found here). It’s a mini print with a 5×7 image size specifically formatted to be printed on any 8.5×11 paper (A4 international paper) of your choosing but for best quality try white cardstock or matte white fine art paper.

I’m venturing into new territory here so I’m still working out the kinks but I plan on also offering printable 5×7 greeting cards based on my original artwork that you can keep for yourself or give to others for any occasion. So be sure to stay tuned to see what I cook up. In the meantime go sign up for my newsletter, enjoy your free mini print and have a wonderful Spring. πŸ˜€

Zines On My Mind

“Antelope Spirits” by Q. Rumbley

With “Antelope Spirits” now complete I’m ready to get back to drawing now. Currently I don’t have anything specific in mind, I just know I want to curl up on my couch with my mechanical pencil and a sketchbook and see what comes out. Along with wanting to get back to scribbling on some paper I’ve also been tossing around the idea of doing another little art zine, this time filled with well drawn out sketches and maybe even adding in some prose or micro stories. I’ve done one once before a few years back which you can glimpse a few pages of down below.
Zines (short for magazine) are a neat DIY way of self publishing. If you have a printer, a stapler and some paper you can pretty much create your own zine. And they’re pretty fun to make if you have the patience to put one together. I can see myself doing a few more in the future but for now the idea I have in mind will probably be a long term project, so in the meantime I have some sketching, writing and planning to do. 😊

Small Prints

 

Over the past few weeks I’ve been working out the details for doing my own prints, hence the slow progress of my current drawing “Dahlia”. In the past I have ordered a few prints of some old works from a few printers and really didn’t like the quality. Plus I just like to be involved in every step of the process of my work. In other words, I’m really a DIYer. So keeping that in mind I decided to take the plunge and do the prints myself. At the moment I don’t have $500 lying around all willy nilly to just up an buy one of those wide format Epson printers that are often praised by artists who do their own prints, so I’m just working with my Canon Pixma.

Making good quality prints can get a bit involved. There’s the issue of paper quality, ink quality and preservation of the print after it has been processed. I’ve learned that for the best quality you want a printer that uses pigmented ink rather than dyed ink. Pigmented ink apparently are longer lasting compared to dyed inks, are of archival quality and have better color stability. Unfortunately my printer uses dye ink along with most office printers. At first I was discouraged but then I got to thinking, maybe there’s something I can put on a print to protect it from things like UV rays from sunlight, moisture and dust which is what pigmented inks are suppose to do. Luckily there is, it’s archival varnish spray. I don’t currently have any but I just ordered some. Lastly I need a good quality paper to print on, preferably archival paper which is acid free and lignin free. I already have a pack of Epson Ultra Premium Presentation Matte Paper that I’ve been testing out. So far the prints have been turning out pretty good. I don’t know if the paper is archival though. I did some research and learned that it used to be called “archival matte”, then it was switched to “enhanced matte”. Now it’s called presentation matte. No where on the packaging does it say that it’s archival so I’m going to assume it isn’t but it still yields a really good print, which you can see in comparison to the actually drawing below. Anyhoo, I’m now on the hunt for some quality printing paper for my art. My plan is to start out with a small limited edition of 4×6 or 5×7 reproduction prints. If everything works out, I should have everything worked out, with my drawing finished and prints ready to go by the end of this month. Wish me luck. πŸ™πŸ˜Š

Sometimes You Have To DIY It

I’m not sure if this is ingenious or just down right cheap and trifling. I’m an avid diarist. I’ve got drawers and footlockers full of diaries/journals, that honestly, I cringe to read through but yet can’t help but to continue writing. Typically it takes me one to two months to fill up a journal​ so I’m frequently heading to the corner store or local B&N in search for a new notebook, journal, diary or whatever I can find to write my thoughts in. (I also have a journal app on all my mobile devices.) But the journals I’m most fond of are the slim pocket journals that run about $15-20 a pop depending on where you get them. I’m close to finishing my current one and I just don’t feel like shelling out another $20 for a new one. So I made my own. I had some college ruled notebook paper, some cream colored cardstock, some minty dental floss and a hole puncher lying around to whip up this DIY journal. I know, it’s makeshift and not all that pretty but it will do for now. Actually I had fun doing it. For $20 I could go buy a pack of writing paper, some nicer cardstock and twine and make four or five journals, designing them to my own liking,  adding my own personal touch to them, like some drawings and whatnot instead of buying ones that are premade. So here’s my little DIY project for the day. 

…btw, the minty dental floss adds a nice wakeful aroma. 😊