Posts Tagged ‘Drawer of Sockbirds’

This sketchy sockbird will keep an eye on the blog while I am away.


I hope to visit Cass Art again, this time to buy some Windsor & Newton Series 7 brushes. I’ve been planning to buy some for several years and I now feel that I have earned it since I have practiced and perfected my technique with the one series 7 brush I own. I am also going to Cornelissen, hopefully to get ahold of a proper lumpe sanguine and perhaps also silverpoint equipment. I plan to draw at both the British Museum and Natural History Musem. We’re also visiting Pollock’s Toy Museum, another place where I hope to make a lot of drawings and drolleries. A visit to Kew is planned as well, as always. A small cactus I bought at Kew a couple of years ago perished in the move, so I hope to find something to add to my plant collection.

Speaking of plant collections, I bought a nano terrarium yesterday. I plan to grow small orchids, mosses, ferns and gesneriads there. Pics upcoming. Also, I made cold process soap. Yep, I do have a lot of time on my hands at the moment!


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I have finally found my scanner. Here we go, the first of two grey sockbirds. I got the idea of sockbirds specialized in woolen socks since I bought grey-striped knitted (knit?) socks at a Christmas market last December.

Sockbird 12

Title: The Grey Gourmand
Size: cut from A5.
Equipment: Parker 51 EF with Pelikan Black. Parker 51 Fantasy Kullock (demonstrator) with J Herbin Gris Nuage (so smooth, like drawing with a brush). Washed partly with water, partly with the grey ink. So, many shades of grey, came out quite well. For comparison, I have added a copy converted to greyscale behind the cut. To illustrate the many shades of “dirty” grey coming out in mixes/shades with other colours.
Computer alteration: Scanned, slightly brightened and heightened contrast. Removed a couple of spots of unknown inky origin. An ink drollery on the back of this drawing shone through (sic), which led to a need for a bit more brightening than I would have liked. I like texture. Proper, IRL texture. Part of the reason I have yet to go digital.
Important notice: since the grey sockbirds haven’t got any colours (really, even if there are hues of other colours), they have the diagonally striped feathers in black and white (or: my excuse for getting to draw the near-ubiquitous striped bands I like. See background, top right, for example).
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g.
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: Well, obviously this bird isn’t comfortable. In fact, he looks rather miserable. This made me able to identify him as a gourmand. Woolen socks are obviously a bit harder to digest than standard striped socks. Since we see only one sock in the picture, the other is likely swallowed and making trouble already.
Upcoming: another member of the grey gang. Also, a couple of general updates. I am also working in clay again.

Behind the cut: the same image, in greyscale.

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A while ago I ordered samples of different greys from Goulet Pens. I really like the opportunity to compare inks. If shipping to Sweden weren’t so expensive, I’d order more often. My favourite grays were J Herbin Gris Nuage and Noodlers Lexington Gray. J Herbin is more blueish, without wandering too far into blue territory. I found the full bottle of ink at Sandbergs Pappershandel in Umeå, where I passed through for a job interview a week or so ago. Great little independent shop with knowledge of fountain pens and ink, but no homepage.

My new EF Parker 51 I bought via Ebay to replace the one that broke has a slightly different personality than the original one. It is drier and doesn’t like Noodler’s black. I tried Pelikan Black, which works a lot better in the pen, but for drawing I still like Noodler’s Black better. Maybe I’ll try J Herbin Perle Noir or some other black ink in the upcoming months. Noodler’s does have a couple of different blacks as well, I might try Borealis Black if it still exists. Have to look that up. Finding the right black is very important.

Sockbird Teaser

A proper Drawer of Sockbirds post is upcoming, as soon as my scanner arrives. This is just a teaser of the next group of sockbirds, the Grey Gang. The Grey Gang specialise in wool socks. The pens are my new “Birger” black extra fine with a gold-filled cap and the other a translucent fantasy Parker 51 demonstrator from the Argentinian seller Kullock on Ebay. The latter pen has a broad, wet nib and I used it for the Gris Nuage ink. The brush is series 7 W&N, I have forgotten the size. It is small, perhaps a 2? A great brush. Also, I really like the design on the Clairefontaine sketch pads, I am glad I picked one up on looks alone. Fortunately the inside matched the outside in terms of quality.

Kiruna Church

Last but not least, an image from the very last evening I spent above the Arctic Circle (unfortunately not with Aurora Borealis). The building is the church of Kiruna, a very special building you can read more about here. I now reside down south, soon signing the contract for the upcoming position I have accepted in a small coastal town in the south of Sweden, by the Baltic Sea. I begin in August. In the months that remain until I start working again, I plan to read, make a lot of art and hopefully travel to Colorado, Gotland and Köln. Of all places. 🙂

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Sockbird 10

These are the very first sketches (sorry, drolleries) I made of the sockbirds. The sockbirds are probably among the creatures I created 2012 that I like best. The blog has been going strong with approximately two posts a week now for two years. I hope this will continue. I still have a lot to do, especially when it comes to tidying up my links and such to the right. I have several more to add. I reckon I will post more often in 2013.

Sockbird 11

In other news: I have almost 40 followers! This is very cool. Don’t be afraid to comment, ask or link. I am especially looking for other art-blogs with a lot of information on _how_ the images are created, not just the pretty pictures.

The near future: I become jobless and homeless the 31st of January, I will be living with a friend in February. This will probably affect the blog. I have some images scanned that I plan to use, but I will not have access to the scanner until I’ve moved for good. In March I hope I have solved the which-city-will-i-live-in-problem so I at least know where to move. I vacillate whether to buy an apartment or find some roommates. Money is not that tight, but savings are not endless.

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Sockbird 8

Title: Baby Purple
Size: cut from A6.
Equipment: Parker 51 EF, B. Noodler’s Black. Diamine Damson. Waterwashed with W&N Kolinsky brush.
Computer alteration: Scanned, a bit more brightened and heightened contrast than the other birds. For good or bad? Not sure, I think I might have gone a bit overboard.
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g.
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: as I think I might have mentioned, the purple birds are very shy. Especially when small and vulnerable. They also suffer from the misconception that they are invisible when they hide their head in their socks. This is not true, but partially effective since no predator could ever hurt something this cute.
Important notice: I adore his little tail!
In other news: I’m not going to Stockholm for work. Oh, well. Since there is no real possibility of going further north in Sweden, I guess I am still heading south. I have narrowed it down to just a couple possibilities now.
The future of the sockbirds: up ahead is the very second and the very third sockbird I made. They are more like sketches than proper birds, but I think the bird-ancestors deserve their place in the blog as well.
Upcoming: See above. Also, around Christmas/Saturnalia/New years I am happy to be able to present Hemlo to you. Hemlo is something made of clay. I cannot say any more, since my fiance is the recipient of Hemlo (and frightfully good at guessing which gifts he is going to recieve).

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The Spy!

Title: The Spy
Size: cut from A6.
Equipment: Parker 51 EF, B. Noodler’s Black. Rohrer & Klingner Alt Goldgrün. Waterwashed with W&N Kolinsky brush.
Computer alteration: Scanned, slightly brightened and heightened contrast.
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g.
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: This is a very secret bird. He is watching you.
Important notice: I now have 32 people following my blog! Looking forward to explore your blogs as well, I also have to get down to business and add to my blogroll and links to the right.
In other news: My iron substitution therapy has worked far beyond my expectations. If it hadn’t been for me getting dragged down by a persistant cough I would be more alert than I’ve been for several years. I have recently started to bake my own bread, which makes me richer, happier as well as almost too proud of myself. This has unfortunately put the drawing on tha backburner at the moment, but it is still stirring somewhere deep inside my subconscious. Just like the Spy, above.
The future of the sockbirds: I am still thinking along the lines of “Sockbirds for charity”. Maybe Kiva, I have recently started to lend via Kiva and I like it a lot. Sockbird 25 dollars, I donate to Kiva, reuse and use again and again for microloans. After a couple of years withdraw and donate to something else (there is a cat shelter I really adore that I’d like to support). The thing I like with Kiva is that you at least seem to get to know exactly who you are lending to and why. Also, a very high percent of the loans get paid back. What do you think, readers?

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Baby Green
Size: cut from A6.
Equipment: Parker 51 EF, B. Noodler’s Black. R&K alt Goldgrün. Waterwashed with W&N Kolinsky brush.
Computer alteration: Scanned, slightly brightened and heightened contrast.
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g.
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: He is the cutest. I never thought I could draw something this cute. And NO tentacles at all! I hereby clear myself of all responsibility for him. But I still have to tell you he wants to be a sock librarian when he grows up, so I am secretly very proud of him.
Another note: I have noticed that his claws look a bit unfinished. I do like it like that, I think i makes the drawing look more fluid and not too overworked.
In other news: I am way better physically after a month of iron substitution. Still feel a bit overwhelmed about the future (I am the sort of person who want things planned). Possibly, all this uneasiness builds some sort of character. Argh. I don’t need more character.
Upcoming: Blast it if I know. Hopefully some news of my future. Maybe a view again (lots of cloudmonsters sailing past this summer).

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