• Materials & Techniques

    Combining Digital & Traditional Media for Artwork

    Since time immemorial artists have embraced and pushed the boundaries of new tools and new media as they have been invented, whether it be new pigments, surfaces, or equipment. For example, the Camera Obscura is thought to have been used by artists such as Canaletto and Vermeer, JMW Turner was notorious for experimenting with new pigments, (which sometimes proved to be so fugitive that they faded quickly on the walls of his customers), and artists such as the Impressionists were inspired by photography and the accidental compositions of snapshots. Today with the advent of computers and printers, the options to experiment are even wider. There are plenty of artists now…

  • Projects

    Pixelated Papers

    I find it’s always useful to have a stock of decorative papers to use for creative projects of all kinds, and of course for gift-wrapping. There are some beautiful papers out there, but it can be difficult to justify the expense of buying them sometimes. Having your own unique papers is always very satisfying, and there’s the added enjoyment of creating them. They don’t have to be complicated, you don’t have to have any artistic skill in painting and drawing, and if you are mess averse it doesn’t even have to involve paint! They are fun to produce for both kids and adults alike, and anyone can join in. This…

  • Projects

    Scanner Art

    Some of us may have fond memories of photocopying parts of our anatomy in the office in days gone by (do people still do that?), but the fun and games don’t end there, as the humble domestic scanner is an important piece of art equipment these days. You’ll often see scanned textures used in children’s book illustrations to give added texture and depth and create a ‘collage’ effect – in fact if you have any suitable books which use the technique,  playing ‘spot the scanned in texture’  is a game that you can play alongside this activity) but even without the additional digital manipulation often involved in mixed media illustrations,…