This weeks materials Рpens , acrylic and tea 

I have been playing with materials lately – particularly pens and pencils working out what works layering on top of things – I thought I had a lot of ‘stuff’ before …….

This moments ‘weapons of choice’ (it’s worrying me that I used a violent metaphor to describe my drawing equipment – I think it’s one of the things a parent must have said when I was growing up …..) 


Anyway from left to right 

A selection of permanent markers – for some reason cheap pens work better over layers of water resistant / plastic based stuff and my thin sharpie is much more forgiving than a thick one ….. 

I try and buy pens when they are on sale,or on offer and I am trying out fountain pens and things that can refill so that I cut down on my plastic recycling. 

Back to my list 

Signo pigment ink in bronze – because of the contrast this colour has with the turquoise / teal/ blue palette I am working with at the moment. 

Uniball eye permanent ink and water soluble – in turquoise and green – I like to mix up water soluble and permanent when tea dipping so that you get colours running.

Posca 3mm bullet pen in blue – I love these type of pens when they work but I do not like the flooding ….. 

Cheap Childs felt pen in blue – soluble ink 

Uni chalk marker light blue 1.5-2.5 bullet  – this is nice for highlights 

Pentel wet eraser chisel – contrasting shape to above 

Paint brush with resovoir – I haven’t tried this with waterproof ink yet – it’s an ink guzzler but fun l. 

Cheap Korean gelato – lovely – semi permanent effects 

White Stabillo pencil for glass , metal , paper and plastic  – it says it’s water proof but it’s not. 

Faber Castro Polychromos in Cobalt green permanent. 

Cheap biro – my favourite mixed media implement at the moment 

Distress Marker bought in the sale at Hobby Craft – with a damaged tip – I love the brush end – I wish it was permanent 

The type of thing I have been using them on 

This one is teadipped and has clear gesso drawn on in spirals at some stage …. 


This one uses biro, acrylic , powdered pigment , and several of the above swirled through before and after tea dipping. I say several because looking at the image I can’t remember what exactly ( lol) 


If I use termeric in the tea dipping – I get a nice dark colour but it leaves a residue that needs to be sealed before I can work on top , or it tends to ruin pens – which is not cost affective 


I have found a PVA at the local DIY shop that seems to work when applied with a credit card and it just adds a sheen to the paper. 

The above image was made using :

1)  a fabric diolly print in acrylic

2)  drawn swirls with distress pen , and chalk 

marker 

3) tea dipped 

4) PVA 

5) printed on with acrylic through a stencil 

6) doodle flower in permanent marker 

7) biro grid 

I have found if I cheat with the tea and add a squirt of  brown acrylic I can deepen the tones. However, I prefer the effect that you get when you dip the paper several times- printer paper is particularly nice but is very fragile.

Below shows three pieces with different shades of brown – the top one has been dipped once the back one 3 times   

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Many Paths- many Summits

The prompt many paths one summit seemed a bit flat after my attempts to represent quantum physics

I attended a Japanese wood carving course in the autumn of 2014 and was reminded of Hokusai’s work . I produced a series of images over the new year based on his famous wave image , using permanent markers and doodling

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I realised that the smaller wave in the foreground of Hokusai’s wave was also simillar in shape to Mount Fuji

When I searched for Mount Fuji wood cut images as initial research for my journal page – I realised that the prompt might have been influenced by : Each and every master, regardless of the era or the place, heard the call and attained harmony with heaven and earth. There are many paths leading to the top of Mount Fuji, but there is only one summit – love

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So it seemed apt to base my image on Fuji – the wave image had leant itself very well to my doodling style. I struggled to manipulate the mountain and combined paint and doodle . I still wasn’t pleased with the overall concept.

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I was struck by the singularity of the prompt after ‘Everything can be our teacher’ prompt – my post materialistic leanings insisting that they would be as many summits as there were people to climb them – each summit would be different which ever path was climbed . No two experiences ever being perceived as exactly the same

Edinburgh is built on two old volcanoes – so a Hokusai/ doodle treatment of Arthur’s seat seemed in order
I still wasn’t happy with my design so I attacked it with stencils, gesso, acrylic paint , biros and water soluble colour pastels

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I forgot to add my doodle representation of Arthur’s Seat

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