We’ve been having some pretty bad weather lately. Though nothing damaging for now, it’s just inconvenient with the usual intermittent rain but with some strong winds. Don’t even bother putting your umbrella up. Driving my compact Toyota Aygo on the motorway was pretty scary too in fact. When I was sending a Line message (Japanese version of WhatsApp) to my boyfriend lamenting about this weather, I came across a really cute sticker featuring Totoro, a Japanese anime character, caught in a storm. Then I was inspired…
As soon as I got to my studio, I took my pad out (Strathmore’s Mixed Media) and sketched my idea. I made a funny bunny as well but my version with longer ears and elongated eyes. Then instead of a pair of eyes staring down at her, I drew Little One all in awe.
Ecoline Ink Background
For the background, the first thing that came to mind was using Ecoline Ink in liquid form. I used bright blue diluted with a few drops of water and smeared it with a round brush and kitchen paper for that chaotic effect. Whilst wet, I then added a few drops of grey ink to add some confusion. I could have used watercolours but I felt that the ink gives a more vivid result whilst managing to stay reasonably transparent.
Mixed Media Details
I used a variety of media for the rest. Firstly painted the Funny Bunny in Titanium White acrylic paint mixed with matte medium so I could later shade it with pen or coloured pencil. I decided to give Copic markers a rest today and reintroduce my other favourite markers, Faber Castell Pitt Artists Pens. Whilst Copics are alcohol-based, Pitt Artists Pens are from India Ink so both non-water soluble. In some areas such as Little One’s face and dress, I used coloured pencils (Holbein’s Artist Colored Pencils and Staedler’s Ergosoft) to give a softer finish. I used three shades of brown markers for her hair and then filled it in with brown coloured pencil. And now:
I had a great time working on this piece but have to admit that when I finished, I was not happy with the composition at all. Maybe I was just getting too hung up with the “one-third rule”. But the piece eventually grew on me despite that. After all, the point of this Storm is that it’s supposed to be chaotic right? So I guess no need to be so structured for a change! Furthermore, I felt that for the first time in ages, the image gives a genuine “anime” feel like it came straight out of a comic book. The bizarre existence of this strange Funny Bunny and the expression of the Little One are just too cool to dismiss. So I guess it’s safe to say that sometimes, rules are meant to be broken!