Month: November 2014

“Montreal Fall Wind” WIP2


I don’t know the name of the technique I am using, as most of the time, but what it essentially consists of is laying plastic over the wet watercolour in order to distort it while it dries. I will be doing this in sections, and using tape to mask those sections off.
Je ne sais pas comment la technique s’appelle laquelle j’utiliserai, comme d’habitude, mais je laisse de la plastique rester sur les aquarelles lorsqu’ils sèchent. Celle déforme la texture et crée des lignes. Je vais la faire en sections en utilisant des rubans de masquage.

“Montreal Fall Wind” WIP1

I hope you guys will enjoy the next set of WIPs! They are complex and a technique I haven’t used in a long time.

This image was originally created for the Montreal World Film Festival as a submission for their poster contest. It didn`t win, and I had to post-pone posting my WIPs here.

I tried to create a less masculine man and a less feminine woman, maybe because I identify with it and maybe because it`s more of a challenge. In any case, people confuse the gender of the two and that`s fine by me.

The pencils.

J’espère que vous jouissez cette ensemble de WIPs! Ils sont complexes et j’avais utilisé cette technique depuis longtemps.

Cet image était originalement crée pour le concours de l’affiche de Festival des Films du Monde de Montreal, mais celui n’a pas été sélectionné. À cause de ça, j’avais dû attendre à poster ces images.


J’ai essayé à illustrer un homme moins masculin et une femme moins féminine, peut-être car j’identifie avec ça ou peut-être car c’est un défi. En tous cas, les gens confondent le deux et c’est pas grave.

Les contours.



Avatar Korra and Raava WIP7 – The Final Image

0110Here’s the next layer of watercolour I added. I believe I also went over the whole figure again with watercolour because everything wasn’t quite dark enough. Tried to add more salt effects after adding this layer over the nice previous layer, but apparently there is a limit of how much salt you can use since eventually… things just get too salty. This is something I actually learn later on another drawing I’ll be posting.

Just to wrap it up, here’s the final step: removed the latex off the image.

0111If you’re interested in buying this as the original, it’s 9″x 12″ on 140lb watercolour paper; please send me an email. 

Likewise, I have some prints I am selling at cons and events that I made. They are available in my store. They’re about 11″x14″ on great paper.

Archival quality prints with frames and then other merchendise on Society6 of course.

Huge variety of phone and other device cases and covers on Nuvango.

My last point of promotional maintenance is that I finally made a Facebook page. Ok, maybe if you snooped around, you would have found my old Facebook page, which was kind of embarrassing.I deleted it. This is the official one. Facebook following is good when you tend to forget about the majority of the internet (like me). It also has my store built into it. As always, you can find me anywhere online with the “artkarolina” alias. There’s not much on the page yet, but I hope I see some new followers so I have someone to post for. This is also better than trying to friend me, because I don’t really want everyone mixed in with my personal life too.


Painting Cliche Things

Even though most of my portfolio is acrylic and oil paintings, I actually haven’t painted in a few years. It’s kind of ironic, especially since I’d really really would like that someone commissioned some portraits from me *cough*, but I can understand why not if my portfolio is a bit out of date in that field and the few I have painted are with either myself or really impatient models. I’ve yet to paint a portrait that really flatters someone, please someone give me the chance! I know I could just do it on my own, but I am so poor right now I can’t “waste” materials like a canvas and paint. Sigh.

harbour_sunset_wallpaper[1]What I really wanted to say is that it’s been so long since I’ve painted that I somewhat feel like I am starting over, if that makes sense. I think when anyone pursues art as a profession or hobby, they go through a “phase”. It doesn’t matter what art form it is. Photography: you’ll want to take the perfect sunset, the perfect flower close up, a bird close up, an insect, a cool cityscape, meaningful portrait. Film: Depending on your tastes, you’ll want to make that mafia film, zombie movie, coming-of-age film. Painting: You want to paint a landscape, a cityscape, a portrait, and something in the spotlight (that’s the one I’m doing now).


The most iconic images, you’ll want to recreate…and if you’re starting out, you’ll be disillusioned that you’re being original even though what you’re really doing is practicing forming ideas. That’s actually perfectly okay, and I encourage it! If you talked to me bird[1]maybe 5 years ago, I would’ve chewed you out for being generic, but I’ve long since realized there is no such thing as an original idea.We’re all inspired by something around us, and being in a society where you can easily access art lets us absorb lots of previously done ideas. It’s impossible one of those ideas won’t show up in your art. Likewise, when something feels really original, it’s more because it’s culturally relevant and probably something that hasn’t been seen in a long time*. Going through this “phase” lets you get those really generic things out of your head and it’s like baby steps for learning how to develop an idea so that it will be more your own. It’s the training wheels of concept.

Making something your own, IFlower+Wallpaper[1]‘d argue, is more important in art than pursuing being original. But I’m a pretty traditional painter and don’t really care for reinventing the painting medium. I’m not gonna start using my foot or house pant, or painting with gunpowder and fire. It’s not my thing. I appreciate academic painting.

So right now, I am recreating an image I painted very long ago of a ballerina in the spotlight. I’ll explain more later. I anticipate I will probably want to do a pretty cliche landscape next, because I really feel like going through baby steps and seeing how much my painting technique has improved and how I can make really cliche images into my own thing.

* There are things that are truly original, like art depicting new technology, a huge change in culture and society. You can’t say that before the 2000s, pro-LGBT+ art was readily present and sci-fi art definitely was non-existant in something like the 1500s. But you know what I really mean… painting yet another Bob Ross mountainscape is not original, even if you have a different composition and style.


Credit: Bob Ross.
Photos: No idea, but googled sunset, flower, and bird close up.

Oh yeah, why do photographers obsess over photographing the moon? It pretty much ALWAYS looks the same, maybe slightly rotated.

Avatar Korra and Raava WIP6


There’s way more going on here than the last image! Here, I masked off the edges of my figure, the water, and the Raava spirit. I admit this was kind of tedious and annoying, but such is life. The background is a layering of red, orange, and a black/blue mixture with some salt. I really liked the way it turned out, but I had to change it because it was too close to the skin colour. I’m also going for
night time, so this wasn’t going to work. When I put the next layer on, I immediately felt some regret because the way the salt and colours worked out here is amazing.


Avatar Korra and Raava WIP2

After applying my usual masking fluid to areas I want to preserve, here is the first wash. I am doing this a little big differently, as the masking fluid is being used to create contrast rather than just preserve white. The lighting is going to be very dim and dramatic, so I need to keep certain areas light to paint over later, otherwise it will get muddy and flat. Some salt is also already applied. As you see, I quickly paint areas of similar colour first.




Avatar Korra and Raava WIP1

Here are my two starting pencil WIPs from when I was creating this image as fanart for the Montreal Comic Con.

Anatomy always takes a while to work out.

0104I really enjoy the Avatar Korra series. I like that is has complex romantic relationships, that the main character is a strong female, that everyone isn’t just white, and the larger themes and issues involved. I have to admit the second season gets kind of … typical anime with the whole save-the-world going to the extreme and using supernatural/magic powers. If there’s a 3rd season, I’d like to see where it goes and if it’s more tame. It’s hard to top saving the world in terms of significant conflict in a screenplay.