Get out some index cards and a black pen, and use these tips to improve your drawing skills! Index cards and a black pen make for a lot of small drawings — this collage was made up of a bunch.
1. DIVIDE SHADES INTO LIGHT AND DARK AREAS
There are so many ways you can draw faces — many different approaches. Giving attention to light and dark areas (ie. the sunglasses, the top of the lip, the shadow caused by the lid of the eye) will dramatically improve your drawing. Don’t obsess about the many shadows on the face, simply divide it into two groups: light and dark.
2. KEEP PROPORTIONS IN MIND
Most beginners get distracted by focusing on drawing super-accurate eyes, nose and mouth, and forget to make the actual skull – the egg shape those features sit on – to be the right size. Give attention to keep the features in the right location. (ie. the eyes the correct distance apart, the right amount of space allowed for the forehead).
Most professional artists do a number of studies (fancy word for practicing) focusing on small aspects they plan to include in a larger work. That’s what index cards are great for – quick and dirty practice. Drawing faces is no more difficult than anything else; in fact, it could be easier, since we all have a first-hand knowledge of our own faces and have spent our lifetime looking to other people’s faces in social situations.
4. IGNORE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN
The most difficult part is not trying to include too much information. An artist must practice solipsism – if it is not visible from the angle you are viewing, do not include it. (ie. look at how little information I give you about the nose – often just the shadow that falls under the nose, rarely do you see both nostrils depicted separately). Even on the highly detailed face in the collage below, only the shadows are really drawn – the nostril that is in the light is not actually drawn but the shadows give the illusion that the nose is a full, complete shape.
The Latin names and meanings of the official 88
constellations are given below. The original 48
constellations of Ptolemy are indicated with an
asterisk *. Ptolemy’s constellation Argo the Boat
was later divided into three parts (Carina,
Puppis, and Vela, which are noted). Source
Latin Name Meaning
Andromeda, Daughter of Cassiopeia
Antlia, The Air Pump
Apus, Bird of Paradise
Aquarius, The Water-Bearer
Aquila, The Eagle
Ara, * The Altar
Aries, The Ram
Auriga, The Charioteer
Boötes, The Herdsman
Caelum, The Chisel
Camelopardalis, The Giraffe
Cancer, * The Crab
Canes Venatici, The Hunting Dogs Canis Major, * The Big Dog
Canis Minor, * The Little Dog
Capricornus, * The Goat
Carina, * The Keel (of Argo)
Cassiopeia, The Queen
Centaurus, The Centaur
Cepheus, The King
Cetus, * The Whale
Chamaeleon, The Chameleon
Circinus, The Compasses
Columba, The Dove
Coma Berenices, Berenice’s Hair
Corona Australis, The Southern Crown
Corona Borealis, The Northern Crown
Corvus, The Crow
Crater, The Cup
Crux, The Cross
Cygnus, * The Swan
Delphinus, The Dolphin
Dorado, The Swordfish
Draco, The Dragon
Equuleus, The Little Horse
Eridanus, The River
Fornax, The Furnace
Gemini, The Twins
Grus, The Crane (bird)
Hercules, The Son of Zeus
Horologium, The Clock
Hydra, The Water Snake (female)
Hydrus, The Water Snake (male)
Indus, The Indian (American)
Lacerta, The Lizard
Leo, * The Lion
Leo Minor, The Little Lion
Lepus, The Hare
Libra, The Balance
Lupus, The Wolf
Lynx, The Lynx
Lyra, The Lyre
Mensa, The Table
Microscopium, The Microscope
Monoceros, The Unicorn
Musca, The Fly
Norma, The Square
Octans, The Octant
Ophiuchus, The Serpent-Bearer
Orion, The Hunter
Pavo, The Peacock
Pegasus, The Winged Horse
Perseus, Rescuer of Andromeda
Phoenix, The Phoenix
Pictor, The Painter
Pisces, The Fishes
Piscis Austrinus, The Southern Fish
Puppis, The Stern (of Argo)
Pyxis, The Compass
Reticulum, The Reticle
Sagitta, * The Arrow
Sagittarius, The Archer
Scorpius, The Scorpion
Sculptor, The Sculptor
Scutum, The Shield
Serpens, The Serpent
Sextans, The Sextant
Taurus, The Bull
Telescopium, The Telescope
Triangulum, * The Triangle
Triangulum Australe, The Southern Triangle
Tucana, The Toucan
Ursa Major, * The Great Bear
Ursa Minor, * The Little Bear Vela, The Sails (of Argo) Virgo, The Maiden Volans, The Flying Fish |Vulpecula, The Fox
Ursa Major Myths and Artwork
Ursa Major is the Great Bear, the Big Dipper, or Seven Macaw, depending on your chosen mythology. The big dipper circles the Pole Star throughout the year. In northern latitudes, it is always visible above the horizon as it circles the north pole: this is called circumpolar. Circumpolar constellations are different from seasonal constellations, because you can see them at anytime of the year, making this very important.
Can you find the Big Dipper? Then you already know where to find Ursa Major.
Which way is North? The outer lip of the big dipper always points north. Yes, there’s Polaris – the North Star. It’s easier to get to know the night sky than you think!
More Than A Coincidence, A Butterfly Waiting For Me in the Morning The Very Week I’d Been Painting Butterflies Is A Gift: Happy Thanksgiving, Enjoy all the Magical Gifts that Come Your Way, Starting with the Monarch Butterfly ….
More Than A Coincidence, A Butterfly Waiting For Me in the Morning
When I came into my studio on Sunday, the first thing I noticed was this tiny moth or butterfly carefully perched next to the vintage camera tripod, leaning up against it like it was tired. The frail creature was dead, and delicately sat on the white tablecloth like she was waiting for me.
I questioned everyone who lives here; someone must have noticed how many butterflies I’ve been painting lately, and found it and brought it to me. But no, everyone said “What butterfly?” when I asked them about it.
The Very Week I’d Been Painting Butterflies
So magically, I’ve been painting butterflies, and a whole beautiful one gifts itself to me right on the desk.
Jody says, ‘that’s medicine.’
So I spent Sunday morning painting this beautiful small creature with its mosaic patterned wings, delicate and tiny and precise. How I wish humans were patterned so! (Is that what tattoos are for?)
A Gift: Happy Thanksgiving,
So it’s such a gift, since last week when I’ve been painting monarch butterflies left right and center. It’s a lesson for me in really getting into a subject and contemplating what I’m painting. I’ve thought a lot about butterflies and their migration and their cycle of metamorphosis and the journey they take that no single one completes. A beautiful symbol of wax and wane, like the moon.
I painted four and immediately mailed them off to their wonderful recipients, and the main work Monarch Queen, is now available ($600 contact me)
Enjoy all the Magical Gifts that Come Your Way
Starting with the Monarch Butterfly ….
( If you would like a canvas reproduction, contact me. )
This cupcake art painting I did for one of my best friends, Shveta. She did me the honor of framing it. Here is a picture of the glittery rainbow cupcake hanging on the wall of her kitchen. You can’t tell in the photo that the rainbow is glittery! It goes with all of her cupcake kitchen decor – she has potholders and an apron and oven mitts and dishtowels and everything.
Shveta, hide your eyes here, or you will see the price tag on the gift! If I were doing this as a commission, this scale of watercolor I would sell unframed for $60.
She is the one who made the glittery stars that were scattered through my veil at our wedding.
“Occult” means ‘hidden knowledge’ and it comes from the Latin Word Occultus. Therefore, it is impossible to determine the motives of someone – whether they are a good or bad person- simply because they have some hidden knowledge. In fact, the Christian Church might be called occultist – Jesus taught in metaphor, and his meanings are often hidden – especially with the well-known shortcomings of translation. Although the pastor of the church I attended when I was a teenager attempted to do a good job of translating the original text, a few words could take up the whole sermon. So the knowledge he had of the original meaning and text could fall under the heading “occult.” Oh, but what a loaded word – that statement may make a few people upset.
Helena Petrovna Blavatsky is often called an occultist- she was a teacher of Theosophy as “the archaic Wisdom-Religion, the esoteric doctrine once known in every ancient country having claims to civilization.” Her writings draw on spiritual texts that are widely unavailable to us today. Her writings included more knowledge in the Victorian era than is commonly available now. She used vocabulary directly from the tradition it was drawn from; so reading her writing requires a little research and making effort into finding correct pronunciation for the vocabulary of esoteric philosophy.
You may determine for yourself whether erring on the side of mercy and the light of daring burning in your heart are qualities you would like to have in yourself. Shockingly, you may also be an occultist! (Unfortunately, this does not grant access into any secret societies. Those are a different bird altogether)