friend series

I’ve been feeling very restless lately. I think it was ten days ago when last I worked on my piece for the portrait swap. At first I was waiting for some feedback and now I dont even know what it is that I’m waiting for!

In the meantime, I pulled out this photograph of a friend of mine and had a go. Using acrylics after a break and once again having a problem with blending.  Gave up before the hour was up as the board was warping with all the water I’d added. 😀

For the first time I used watercolour brushes.  Of the two I preferred the synthetic one to the sable but I found the longer tips and shorter handles a bit difficult to use and added a bristle brush to the mix.  Still trying to paint loose without too many details.

8″ X 10″ acrylics on illustration board


Q-sketches at Susanah’s

Sunday at Susannah's

Today it was quick sketches at Susanah’s. She is a great photographer and we based our sketches on some of her work. The task was to simplify but that was forgotten somewhere along the way.

This lady breaking bricks was the last piece made this morning and by that time I was spending more than 5 minutes on each 😀 The first three were made with a marker, the next two with a pen and the last two with charcoal. All in my sketchbook.

Sunday at Susannah'sSunday at Susannah's
Sunday at Susannah's
Sunday at Susannah's
Sunday at Susannah's
Sunday at Susannah's

One more week of Nablopomo


Today I need to update the Portrait Swap post with a wip. But doing that will not help me fulfill the Nablopomo requirement of a post a day. This photograph was taken late afternoon for this post. There was a much richer, warmer sunlight on view but my camera seems to have missed it completely. There are some views of the lake that I hope to try painting sometime soon.

Once more with feeling

Portrait swap

Update : November 23, 2007 : Worked some more on the portrait today.  Still very much a limited palette.  Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Ultramarine Blue, Cobalt Blue ( used by mistake 😛 ) Yellow Ochre, Titanium White and a teeny weeny bit of Sap Green.  And oh I did use and equally tiny amount of cadmium red medium.

Portrait Swap 2 Portrait Swap 2

November 21, 2007 : I am making very slow progress on the WetCanvas Annual Portrait swap project. Incredible portraits have been started, finished and are in the process of being mailed out. If you want a treat go and have a look.

I’m one of the few in the group still stuck in the early stages. The 10″ by 12″ canvas board proved to be too small. I was waiting for my husband to return with some larger canvas boards [ i always have an excuse 😛 ]. Giving it another go on one that is 12″ by 16″.

The first layer was drawn using burnt sienna thinned down with turpentine. Today, I added in some white and burnt umber to separate out the light and dark areas. I’ve managed to shorten the length of the face a bit today but it needs to be shortened some more and the features need to be reworked. Leaving that for tomorrow night. 😀



Recently I asked an old friend to provide me with a reference for the photograph used in his profile. The photograph is stunning and I wanted to have a go at it. This is my first attempt. I plan to have another go drawing or painting it soon.

Pen & Ink, 4″ X 6″ in my pocket sized sketchbook on handmade paper.

Portrait in a hurry

Self Portrait

Today I was determined to put up something that I had made. Originally I had planned to post the paintings that I have submitted for an exhibition but realised later that I wanted that on my main blog. This one was done in a hurry to meet the midnight deadline of nablopomo. For once I’m really happy that I signed up as I might otherwise have just decided to call it a day.

It’s been a tiring day. Mostly because I had to do a bit of running around for the exhibition to meet todays deadline.  First was to write out my resume. I had a friend pitching in to polish it up. Surprisingly it wasnt as tough as I’d anticipated. I then had to take photographs of my paintings, send them out for printing, deposit all the information with the gallery and hand over the paintings to my framer. Phew!

Since I had the photographs for the post I felt I could relax for a few hours.  Started watching The Seven Samurai.  Halfway through realisation made me scuttle to my desk to draw and write these posts. Did do a cup of tea in between 😀

Made with pen & ink, from a photo reference, in my tiny pocket sized sketchbook.  I had wanted to add in colour but ran out of time.

How to take a candid photograph with a point and shoot?

Art morning at Susannah's

Recently there was an interesting post on Photodoto about Photographing people in public places by Elizabeth West. I had left a comment asking how I could go about getting candid photographs. Most of the ones that I’ve taken on the streets of Dhaka look posed. Mainly because the folks in our part of the world are very friendly and the minute they see you taking photographs they’ll come up and ask you to take one of theirs. Like this one on top.

Elizabeth replied to my comment saying that I should try and be inconspicuous and take photographs before people noticed you. I found that I had been doing this already. The problem with this approach was that I needed to be in a car and usually zipping by, shooting whenever I got the opportunity. A lot of moments get missed, some turn out out of focus but you do get an occasional gem. The one below doesn’t fall into the gem category but is one where i haven’t been noticed.


Another way of taking sort of candid photographs was to be part of a group of photographers and then look around for subjects who are not looking at you. I discovered this a few months ago. I’m usually on my own when I take photographs and so have been able to try this method out just twice. The photograph of the two children below is one such example.


One other method suggested by Alexander, in the same thread and one followed by professionals, was to stay in one location for a while till people had lost interest in you and then take the kind of photographs you need. These would make for some truly candid photographs and it is something I plan to try.

A week of Nablopomo

practice sketch

This is based on a photograph of a teenage girl. An attempt has been made to turn her into a young boy to see if I can play around with references instead of using them exactly as they are. Tried out a couple of variations for the background. For the first time I had a problem with the blending tool and gave up quickly. A visit to the Ambient forum for a solution is due. I’ll be working on this some more once the blending problem gets sorted out and hope to use it as a study for a larger piece either in oil or acrylics.
Digital made with Art Rage 2.5

Some more sketches from a couple of days ago

nat geog

drinking water

Two more pen & inks from the lot made a few days ago.  Not happy with what I made today and so scrambled to take these photographs a short while ago to make sure I made my post for the day.  Not happy with these either but todays was worse 😀