And onward into 2017

My word for 2016 was BRAVE. Actually it was a phrase GO BRAVE and I did.

I hunkered down, and bought a bunch of fountain pens: Lamy Safari  fountain pens, Lamy Al-Stars fountain pens, Art Alternatives Pen & Ink Sketch fountain pens, Platinum Carbon Desk fountain pen, Platinum Preppy fountain pen, and apens-i-used-for-inktober-2016

sailor-fude-de-mannen-stroke-style-calligraphy-fountain-pen-bamboo-green-nib-angle-55-degrees

Sailor De Mannen 55 Degreee fountain pen. I have nine fountain pens and use them all every week and to keep them in good working order, I flush them every time I need to refill. I also bought 2 dip pens. Haven’t used them much but that changes this year.

Oh and my favourite permanent/waterproof inks: Platinum Carbon Black, Noodlers Bulletproof Black, Noodlers Lexington Grey, Noodlers #41 Brown and De Atramentis Document Brown. My favourite non-permanent inks – Lamy Black for tonal sketches and the Lamy Violet is solely for writing in my journal with my Lamy Safari Deep Lilac fountain pen.

Aaaahhh, the Stillman and Birn sketchbooks! I’m hopelessly in love with the Alpha, Beta and Zeta hardcover series. Needless to say, my sketchbook hoarding tendencies kicked in and I bought several sizes in each. And did the same when they came out with softcovers. I’ve filled up several and my love for them deepens as I use them.

I bit the bullet and participated in 2016 Inktober – sketches are here and here. And in addition to a couple of my usual monthly sketching challenges in my favourite Facebook groups, I took on a couple of World Watercolour Group monthly challenges. The most enjoyable challenge was food sketching – challenge indeed but so darn enjoyable and satisfying. Watercolour lover that I am I added it to most of my ink sketches. See here and here. As I posted during and after that month when I shared my sketches, I had long admired food sketches by some popular sketchers and secretly longed to try my hand at it. Well you know it is, I oogled from afar but was hesitant to try it. So I jumped at the chance to take part in the challenge. It was a hoot and I had a ball. Once I set aside my apprehension and dived in, I learned that I can roll out some decent food sketches if I take my time, really look at my subject, and Go Brave.

Okay then. So the word/thought/phrase for this year: LOOSEN UP. Why? Because I’ve had enough of my penchant for tight, neat sketches. Whenever I’ve tried a looser watercolour sketch, I like the outcome and I relish the lightness and freedom I feel and I want to experience more of that.

What else is on the cards for for 2017?

More food sketching and people sketching in particular and daily sketching in general. Now that I am babysitting my 1 yr 8mo old granddaughter, I no longer have the long uninterrupted hours doing several sketches each day. However, I make time to sketch something, anything, everyday.

With that being said, below are some of my latest sketches –

Look out for a post about some new art supplies I purchased recently.

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