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Mark Making

Discover Pinterest’s 10 best ideas and inspiration for Mark Making. Get inspired and try out new things.

Mark-Making Exploration

John and I had a fun day in the studio recently. We both wanted to do a bit of experimental mark-making, to explore new ideas. John is looking for inspiration for his printmaking and I thought it would be interesting to play with marks and compositions which could be the starting points of new drawings or which might possible translate into textiles. We gathered lots of tools and then made a few new ones, looking for anything which would make an unusual mark if dipped in paint: We decided to stick to black and white, so we could concentrate on marks and tone. I mixed up a tub of black acrylic and got out some Platignum Calligraphers Black Ink too (a good non-waterproof ink, as it separates into pretty colours when wet, rather than just going grey). I found an oil bar and some liquin too, which is great for smearing not just oil bars but also oil pastels. Plus a Derwent Inktense block and grater (tiny gratings can be scattered onto wet paper or sprayed with water for speckled effects). We both put on latex gloves and set-to on a big piece of cartridge paper each. It was such fun - no pressure to make something which 'works', just pure experimentation. This was my first sheet: I am particularly interested in randomness, so many of the new tools we made were designed to make the marks more hard to control. To add to the random element, we both cut up our sheets into equal pieces, using pre-decided measurements, not aesthetic judgement to create the sections: I like the way it changes things when you isolate a section. The emphasis on the various elements changes, because of the enforced edges, and you start to get interesting things happening with composition. On my 2nd sheet, I started with some large marks in a grey emulsion, to create a new element of contrast. I made a new tool too - a piece of corrugated card to print with. You can see the marks top right: I cut this one into squares. As the paper's dimensions didn't divide exactly into squares, this allowed me a slight element of judgement, as I could move the composition of any square a centimetre or two to the left or right. I then selected the best 6 squares from the 9 created. These are my favourites. It's surprising how well they work just as they are, but you can also see how they could be taken into print or textiles. It would be fun trying to find ways to reinterpret the marks and tones in the different medium. I can highly recommend this as a very enjoyable way of exploring new techniques and getting new inspiration. The randomness is important though, as a way of forcing you not to be too controlling and letting unexpected things happen. John did some experiments using blotting paper, which he tore into strips. Even the offcuts were interesting, which I saved as we were clearing up. The beautiful blue is the Platignum ink: Even my offcuts were quite interesting: Have a go. Even before we got drawing, it was good fun making the tools from odds and ends we found around the studio, taping them to bits of stick and then finding out what marks they made.

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MARK MAKING EXPERIMENTS — HELEN WELLS ARTIST

In this video I explore different ways to make marks with random items and found objects such as cardboard, old packaging, string and an old credit card. I dip them into Indian ink and watered down acrylic paint. The handwriting of our art I love to explore ways to make unusual marks. I like to t

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colourful sketchbooks

Artist Helen Wells shares her knowledge, wisdom and thoughts on creativity, art making and sketchbooks to help others develop their art practice and approach.

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Inca Trail Wallpaper Sale

Order A Sample Our Inca Trail wallpaper is inspired by traditional American Folk motifs combined with Scandinavian Modern designs of the 30s. Richly decorated hand-drawn stylised cactus, flora & fauna merge with fluid lines, naive mark-making, and geometrics. ROLL SIZELength: 10m × Width: 52 cm REPEAT52cm | Straight Match PAPER SPECIFICATIONPaste The Wall making the application super easy. MANUFACTURINGWallpaper is printed at a fourth generation English factory using water-based environmenta

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Handmade Brushes from Mark Making Class

I want to share with you a few images of mark-making tools people have made in my Mark Making class. I love seeing what people come up with!...

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2020 #5 Topic introduction: Mark Making

Innovative creativity from PaperArtsy. Paint, stencils, and techniques galore for any mixed media enthusiast to enjoy.

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Teaching art: Patterns & Details

As a part-time art teacher & artist, things are always busy for me! (Hence, the lack of regular blogging these past months.) Some days are fast & exciting, other days are more challenging, but it's always fun. I love what I do. This post is on what I taught my Kindergarteners - 6th graders. Last week I found myself in a last-minute pull-off situation. Thankfully everything worked out really well, I had fun, students had fun, & everyone learned something. Here's what I taught— p Prep work: Teachers! Go forging! Gather up leaves, pinecones, thorny wood, bark, driftwood, seashells & good-sized rocks; looking for textures or stripes. I arranged everything on the tables where students would be working. I made (& stressed) the rule "look with your eyes, not your hands" otherwise, the kids would have been all over everything. Here are some pics of things I used for drawing inspiration, in addition to everything I had. (Teaching art is the probably the only profession where you steal things from home & bring them to work!) I felt funny as I toated my huge canvas bag into the school - it probably weighed 30 pounds - all the rocks & wood. To the left are some examples I found online - textures created with pen - I used pencil with the students. I told students to pretend they were looking through binoculars & zooming up on the object they were drawing while looking for patterns & designs. When they were drawing the items I told them that they didn't necessarily have to draw exactly what they saw - but rather to be inspired by it. I had students draw 9 boxes spaced as equally as possible on their 11x16 paper, then I'd pick an object to focus on saying "look at the spotted rocks on your table, draw that" I would do my example of a rock, in my box on my paper that was up on the white board. Then they would do theirs. Or I'd say, "Let's look at the wood, do you see those lines running through it?" In turn we drew everything that was on the table. We tried combining different types of lines together to create unique patterns. The idea is for young artists to look at these patterns by observing the details in nature & saying, "what would happen if I zoomed in close & only looked at the shapes, or lines, or spaces?" When drawing textures in nature - instead of just saying, "oh thats pretty", look & say, "that's beautiful, how can I use this, or be inspired by this?' Look at one particular part or shape & show it to the world through your art! Then getting a little more technical, drawing details in this fashion is really more of a representational vs. abstract art. The details get so detaily they become abstract…. You can look at something in its raw form & see something no one else ever saw! You can create order, chaos & design. The best way to learn in to draw is to, doodle, create, look around & explore! Draw what you see, not what you think you see. I told the kids not to worry if their drawings didn't quite look like mine, or even what they were drawing - I said, "you are all learning, & everyone sees things differently." I always walk around while the students are drawing, helping those who really need it, or critiquing the art of those who were doing well. Kids are so fun! There are several types of "rhythmic line designs & patterns" - I told students to always be on the lookout for these rhythmic patterns. I used the idea of music: it has a beat, a rhythm, a pattern. Abstractly speaking, drawing a rhythmic art pattern is like drawing the sound of music, creating sound waves & gestures. ● Straight line design ● Zigzag line design ● Spiral design ● Curved lines designs ● Here are some student drawings, 3rd graders. The K, 1st & 2nd graders' drawings were a little more wild looking; whereas the 4-6th graders were more neat/contained. I love seeing each child's perspective & how they chose to create their patterns. Each child is so unique! If you found this interesting, unintelligible or inspiring, please leave me a comment! I'm thinking about posting more on teaching & art. I would love any feedback! Thanks!

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