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Grumpy Red Flower

Grumpy red flower. Copics and other markers. June 2014

This is another marker version of a digital painting. You can see the digital painting here.

You can see the work in progress painting on my tumblr.

Digital Art Journal with tumblr

I’ve opened a tumblr account many years ago in 2008. Some of my web acquaintances had one, and were very excited. But I never really knew what to do with it. I had this blog, I had flickr.

In the meantime however, tumblr has become the home of many artists. It is so easy to upload images, and often it is just images which are uploaded. So I thought I might as well use tumblr as a kind of digital art journal.

I am just working on a new piece painted with markers. I have used the lineart for two digital pieces, one of which you can see here, and I now want to do a “traditional art” piece (Some people may doubt, whether you can describe a marker painting as “traditional art”.). The first thing which I am noticing is that I’m far more careful in selecting the colours. You can’t just wipe the colours off like you can with photoshop. The other thing is that it is a nice feeling of doing something with your hands, one stroke after the other. Painting even has a kind of zen-like quality- soothing and relaxing. I don’t feel like that when I am painting digitally. But both ways to paint have something in common: They take me away from reality. I can spend hours without noticing how the time rushed away!

Wild Cat

Big Wild Cat. Sketch drawn with ballpoint pen and ink pen. June 2014

I had a reference for the sketch – not a photo but a coloured pencil drawing somebody did on deviantart. No, I didn’t trace it – it is a freehand drawing. It’s only a quick drawing exercise, trying to get the proportions right and the watchful expression on the face.

I once planned to do a sketch or drawing everyday, but up to now I didn’t manage to succed with this goal. However I still succeed in doing something artsy every day – experimenting with the marker paper I have, watching YouTube videos about drawing and painting and doing a quick sketch now and then.


Tulip painted with Markers

Tulip. Markers on paper. May 2014


Up to a few days ago I had watched all those videos about blending with markers thinking that I am too dumb to put that into practice. I had tried it and failed. Then, last Saturday, I fetched one of the sheets I’d been given as a present and began to paint the tulip (I’d done a ballpoint sketch of this tulip before). It is a very smooth paper, not too thin. I did the lines first, let them dry (takes a bit of a time with this kind of paper), and then grabbed my markers. Whoaa! Suddenly, blending was possible! The dark red in the middle of the tulip was done by first laying down a warm grey and then adding red.

I also noticed the difference between the brush tip and the round tip. With the brush tip of the marker you can lay down the paint like you can with a real brush, whereas the round tip is useful for making marks. Fortunately I’ve still got a lot of these smooth sheets of paper left. And I’m so glad that my friend and colleague Matthias gave those sheets to me!

Copic Marker Tutorial on YouTube: Realistic Giraffe Baby

As I am focussing on drawing with markers at the moment I also browse through the hundreds of YouTube Video tutorials. I discovered this one which I find very, very helpful. Not only because it shows how to paint/ draw a baby giraffe (I love to paint animals!), but also because it describes the process of laying down one colour after the other. Enjoy!


Abstract Bird

Abstract Bird. Markers and coloured pencils on cardstock. May 2014

I returned to coloured pencils and markers, a combination I favoured some time ago. The figure in the foreground which is supposed to be a running bird, has been painted with markers, using all the shades of red I have at the moment. For the background however I used all the green coloured pencils I have, adding a bit of blue and a bit of brown at some places. Then I used markers again – an yellow green one, a light green one mostly to to over the layer made by the pencils.

This had two effect:

  1. the pigments of the pencils were solved and blended because of the alcohol ink.
  2. the colour of the pencils changed a bit, adding a bit of yellow or a lighter touch.


Doodle in Red

Doodle in Red. Markers on paper, May 2014

One morning I did this quick doodle, and the other morning I thought I could use this to display all my red hues. I mostly used Delta Markers, and some Copic ciaos. Delta Markers are produced by the German company Rotbart, and I think they only sell in Germany. They are the cheapest brand, with a rather limited colour range.

I am now working on a piece which is based on this doodle, getting back to the mixture of coloured pencils and markers I focussed on some time ago. As painting with coloured pencils takes its time I don’t know when I’ll be able to show the finished piece. I’ll keep you posted!


Red and Green Colour Combo

Red and green colour combo. Markers on paper.

This is the result of two quick doodles at the breakfast table. Just now I am writing my first longer story in German, planning to publish it together with some illustrations. I got the first rough version written down. Now I’ve got to go over the story again, polishing it. In a second step I will decide which illustration I would want to insert at which place, and then focus on the illustrations.  Writing a story and illustrating it – that’s something I dreamt of a long time ago, but never thought it would be possible. The project still frightens me – but I also enjoy it deeply.

I also plan to publish an English version of the illustrated story. But you will understand that it’s only natural that I am focussing on the German version. There will be another art event in July (the same one as last year), and I intend to show some copies of my story there.

With the focus on this project I however allow myself to so some doodling, as I did with the piece you can see above. Playing with shapes and colours, nothing more.

Red Flower


Red fantasy flower. Pen and ink drawing, coloured in photoshop.

I had used the same drawing before and coloured in in blue hues, as you can see here. This time I thought I could play with reds, and a different background.

Another fantasy creature

Fish-seal (or seal-fish?)

This is the result of my playing around with a ballpoint pen early in the morning at the breakfast table. It seems that just now I am into fantasy beings – first the grumpy plant (you can have a look at it here), and then this one which is a crossbreed between a fish and a dragon (look at his head!) and a seal and whatever you can see in it. He (Yes, definitely it is a “he”) looks as he is courting another being which we don’t see. One day I might write a story about him…


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