Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Drawing and Coloring with Prismacolor Color Pencil

Just recently, I've thought about creating a Youtube channel to broadcast my "How I Draw Portraits" work in progress. The aim of which is to feature speed-videos of me drawing portraits with color pencils, charcoals or watercolor.

At the bottom of this post is a video showing how I added colors on this sketch. I later uploaded that video on the channel. I used the Prismacolor 24 PCS color pencils that my cousin, kuya Jun, had sent me a week ago. He has three identical sets of this so I asked if he could sell me one. He actually ordered the Prismacolor 72 pieces on Ebay but got slightly disappointed when the seller sent a package of three Prismacolor 24 pieces instead.

So, 24 x 3 = 72. Seems valid, right?
I'm not sure if it was false advertising or a lack of clarity from the part of the seller that has misled my cousin into believing he was getting the right thing but the whole bunch of problem could have never happened if things were right in the first place, like putting in the correct description, for example.

Anyhow, he did send an email to the seller, politely informing him of the ruckus. I don't know what has happened after that but I have volunteered to buy one from my cousin so that I could try it. Here's the video of that test.

Monday, 14 November 2016

Painting and Mont Marte Watercolor Paints Review

Painting is an extension of drawing. It adds life to a pencil sketch or an inked art. While almost all of us have started as children who can doodle vivid images straight away from our little visual imagery with just about anything in hand, not all will grow up as descendants of Picasso or Da Vinci.

Perhaps as we grow older, our fondness for art subsides to a cryogenically preserved state due to intervening circumstances. The quest for getting good grades, house chores, new found friendship or even having unsupportive parents are just some of the things that may get in the way.

But why revive a hibernating fascination to art, you say?

Well, uhm, according to some scientific studies, getting oneself immersed in some artistic undertakings can have a positive effect to our brain and to our well-being. Sketching, for instance, increases our creativity and improves motor skills.

Painting, on the other hand, can have more beneficial impacts than drawing alone. According to Fox Hill Residences, painting could improve the overall quality of life. The following are six great benefits of painting that promotes mental health and life in general:

·         Fosters creative growth.
·         Strengthens memory.
·         Builds Problem-Solving and Motor Skills
·         Offers Stress Relief
·         Promotes Optimistic Attitude.
·         Nurtures Emotional Growth.

I guess I was in the right direction when, in the latter months of 2014, I began to scale down on other stressful activities and chose to resuscitate the dying artistic side of me.

Having said too much about painting, I feel a bit guilty for blowing up the introduction. Hence, let’s move on to our simple review of the Mont Marte Paints in 12 tubes.

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
Here are my Mont Marte watercolor brushes that I bought from Theodist. As opposed to acrylic or oil brushes, these have soft bristles. I originally did not know that watercolor needs particular brushes, until I noticed that I had been damaging papers from using the wrong brush. 

There are four ingredients to a good watercolor painting: perseverance, the quality of paints, the strength of paper and the right set of brushes.  If you have any of these, consider yourself lucky. 

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
Just recently, I discovered these two items at Theodist. I’m not sure why other stationery shops here in Papua New Guinea do not bother selling quality art materials like these, but I’m thankful that Theodist does.

The Mont Marte Watercolour Pad, in A4 size, is a 300-gsm cold press paper. It’s thicker than the average photocopy paper and is textured. The Mont Marte Watercolour paints come in 12 tubes filled with richly pigmented colors.

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
That is a good addition to my Mont Marte Two Seasons watercolors, which has 18 tubes of more subtle colors. I have a similar post about the Two Seasons which you can read on this link.

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
Here’s my sketch on the Mont Marte Watercolour paper for this painting. After some experimenting, I have established four types of pencil sketches for different media. For anime-inspired sketch, pencil sketch is more sharper. For charcoal portrait, it needs to be firm but subtle. For color pencil, the sketch should be almost invisible and for watercolour, the lines have to be sharp and the shades sketched roughly or a little bluntly.

The model that I’m about to paint is of someone that I browsed from Google by typing “Beautiful Face” on the search bar. It’s funny that when I browse this again, her photo doesn’t show up in the list anymore.

I hope she doesn’t get on me if she finds out that I made a watercolor portrait of her.

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
Here’s the sketch taped on the board. The board is just the backboard of an ordinary A4 photo frame. I’m using a masking tape to stretch the paper on the board. The paper usually warps when applied on with too much water. This technique, somehow, reduces that effect.

Pinoy in Papua New Guinea by Glen Villar
I love to use the medium-sized brush in the beginning. I usually start with applying transparent colors on areas that I expect to have darker shades.

Here’s the final product of using Mont Marte Watercolour Paints and Mont Marte Two Seasons Watercolour. Both watercolors complement each other very well and adheres nicely on the Mont Marte Watercolour paper.

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

A Men’s Day Special and a Tent Review

A week before the Father’s Day, many storeowners in Port Moresby have probably thought of this as a good time to ramp up sales while disposing off slow moving items. The idea manifested itself through a barrage of promotional gimmicks offering big discounts on selected items.

Of the particular targets whose marketing strategists have in mind for the special occasion are men in general and a more socially acknowledged title for such promotion is “Father’s Day Special.”  But I somehow feel that such title is restrictive on its sense and is just specifically aimed at enticing all fathers alone.

It was probably one of those widely approved, yet hastily thought of millennial catch phrases and I think that this, in particular, has a downside of potentially alienating married men who haven’t had the luck of producing offspring.

Therefore, to appreciate married men of all sort, childless or with children, legally separated or not, divorced or still counting years, this young blogger shall refer to this event as “A Men’s Day Special” instead.

During such occasions, shops are full of surprises indeed. I bought this tent for K50 ($16 USD) at City Pharmacy, which is just next to our office. The regular price is probably around twice the amount. I have misplaced a small paper that is attached to its bag. It has its brand name of Chinese origin, which I find too verbose to remember.

I’ll edit this post up once I found that piece of paper.

This tent has frames like that of an umbrella which is visible once spread out. As much as possible, I refrain from buying things that I have no need for the time being. But I got some friends from other companies who were planning a camping trip to Koitaki and it was probably wise to buy a tent ahead of the schedule. It was one of a kind, to say the least.

I have never slept an entire night out on a camping site away from the safety of familiar sleeping quarter. But during my younger days, I used to sleep out the nights close to rice paddies on the harvest season if you could count that as camping.

The tent did not come with an instruction manual so I had to sit down and figure this thing out for a while. There is a string that went to the bottom of the frame and was knotted at the end. I thought that if I pulled it all the way up, it might do some wonder.

And it did, to my surprise.

Just like that and the tent is set in an instant all after literally pulling some strings up.Some tents are not so hard to assemble after all.

There were plenty of grounds in which our cute tent could be tested and an ideal location was our parking area but I did not want to risk looking silly so I set it up on my bed instead. A 1-Person tent has a standard size of 7x5 feet but I think that this one is a bit smaller. There is a tiny window at the opposite of the door and a mesh to screen off bugs.

The screen mesh alludes to the idea of having the tent fortified with basic protection against malaria or dengue-carrying mosquitoes buzzing around the camping area.

The door has a sufficient opening to which I could comfortably go in and out.

It can be zipped up from either sides. Similarly, there is a mesh to filter off insects when you decide to snug in.

Here’s the view from the inside overlooking the, uhm, grandiose view of my study table.

Looking forward to that camping trip.
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