Latest episode of Nat & Friends gives a broad yet brief overview of developing Computational Photography hardware for contemporary smartphones:
Behind the scenes with Pixel 2 hardware, software, and testing team
members. (Plus lots of untouched photo examples!) For even more Pixel 2 /
Pixel 2 XL photos + videos, watch this video I filmed w/ my friend Lo →
24 FX Knobs / 5 Pushbuttons / 1 Control Voltage Input
Modified analog vintage video gear for visual productions involving photography, camera, glitch, VJ, processing, computer animation, synthesis, modular synthesizers, video feedback and VHS / CRT TV fun.
First major art haul!!! And yet another failed attempt at flatlay.
I’m taking my first art course this summer, and everything pictured above was listed in the materials list. Good thing the local art store had all the course materials packed in a “kit” (more like an oversized plastic bag), so I didn’t have to spend hours wandering the aisles and getting distracted by all the stuff I don’t need yet. In the end, I shelled out like $70 for all of this, including a 24″ ruler and two humongous 18″ x 24″ newsprint and drawing pads. I swear, my entire desk surface is covered by these huge pads of paper. Also, I chose to forgo the materials box, which was optional, and instead, I stored everything in a fancy gold chocolate box.
The entire list of all my art supplies are listed below, left to right:
The TAPE LOOP DRONECHESTRA is an experiment in live multi layered tape looping. Two auxiliary walkmans with separate tape loop parts are being played and fed into the 4 track through the left and right inputs. Their volume is being controlled by their corresponding slider. The 4 track itself is also playing a tape loop and has parts recorded on to each of its 4 tracks. Those individual loops are being played by their corresponding track knob. Everything is then processed through delay and reverb from the Zoom MS-50G and run straight into garageband.
part of me wants to call this “The Great Watercolor Post of 2016″ or something else mildly dramatic because I’ve been asked these questions so many times in only a few months…
But because I go out sketching a lot, and because I go out sketching a lot with a group and with my watercolors I get asked a lot of watercolor questions, so I’ll try to put together what I can in a big post. Keep in mind though that I’m still figuring out this medium, and despite all the classes and sketching over the years it’s such a finnicky and dense medium that I wouldn’t be surprised if I miss half of everything in this post.
Reasons why watercolor rocks:
it’s lightweight and compact
no need to refill your palette every time, they’re rewettable!
they’re cheaper than other paints
no flammable oilsor toxic turps
they look nice (super subjective point)
So here’s what I’ve got:
a Japanese style palette ($5-6?)
what’s basically a split primary palette with some extras
a handful of brushes I’ve accumulated over the years. (~$1-15 each)
a utility brush for big water washes - you might find them called hake or wash brushes in art or hardware stores
^I have a lot of flats, rounds, and angled shaders. The art store where I used to live also would often have discount buckets of watercolor brushes for $1-3. Keep an eye out for stores like this or for art students selling old supplies, but also don’t fall into the trap I did in high school that is getting a new brush each trip to the art store only to find you tend to gravitate towards the same type/size of brush. You’ll be returning the same thing a lot.
Next up are my colors. I get asked a lot what’s on my palette, and frankly my palette’s a bad example. It’s a mix of colors from class lists in high school and from my mentor. You can see which ones I use a lot and which one’s I barely touch, but some I think are necessary to start out with:
warm and cool yellow (mine are lemon yellow and cad yellow)
warm and cool red (mine are alizarin crimson and cad red light)
warm and cool blue (I have ultramarine blue and cerulean)
horizon blue (from holbein)
and…I use cad orange and yellow ochre quite a bit.
The other colors on my palette I haven’t listed are magenta, burnt umber, new gamboge, naples yellow, viridian, and burnt sienna. These were from my high school class and I can’t say I use them all that much anymore. They’re not really necessary to me.
literally anything. I’m not a stickler for paper types. If I was getting paid consistently for my watercolors I’d splurge on Arches or Cottonwood paper, but for now I mostly stick with strathmore watercolor paper (18″x24″) and my handbook sketchbook. I also have two little arches sketchbooks I got in France that are wonderful (and wonderfully cheap in Europe - if you’re anywhere near the Sennelier shop out in Paris stock up on these). You could paint on cardstock or low-quality printing vellum though and be just fine, actually cheapy paper isn’t half bad for your initial scribbles.
I’ve had teachers that’ll tell you anything goes, but I’ve tried a handful of brands over the years and don’t really agree anymore. How did I put up with Koi student watercolors for so long?! Horizon blue is a given since only Holbein has it, the rest I tend to get Da Vinci or Sennelier since they’re great quality, Da Vinci come in bigger tubes, and both tend to always be coupon-kosher at the art stores I’ve been to, so they satisfy my cheapskate bargain-hunter soul. This is another one though - if you’re heading to Europe (or Japan I think), stock up on what you need. A few of my paints on my palette are still Koi. They’re not horrible and I’m just trying to use up what I have (if you were gifted a set of watercolors get your practice out of them), but considering how long watercolor tubes tend to last (since you push out half the tube in your palette and keep rewetting them every time you use them) it’s not a bad idea to get your staples from artist grade brands/lines.
How to Use:
watercolors are pretty versatile. You can work opaquely like gouache, you can work translucently, you can work wet-into-wet, dry brush, the list goes on and on…so I’m not going to say anything about techniques except to experiment with what different things do. Get out a sheet of computer paper or cardstock if you have to and just scribble. This isn’t my picture but it’s a good example:
just fill a few pages testing out your different brushes, different colors, different color mixes, different color strings. Mess around.
Once you do that I had a teacher in high school who had us, with clean brushes, mix ever combination on our palettes like a Mendel diagram with paint. To mix watercolor you can either paint with clear water the shape you want and then drip in some pure color (or mixed but not for this) onto your water puddle. It’ll evenly disperse and you can either drop another color in to see what happens, or mix by layering…so do a dry brush layer over what you just did when it dries. This’ll give you a good idea of what your paints make.
You can also work opaquely as if you’re working with gouache. But try seeing what different things do (like salt or rubbing alcohol or if you live somewhere cold, vodka). Then just start working - doodling, photocopies followed by doodles or memory drawings, or outside.
I don’t know if it’s visible from this sketch I did recently - but I started translucent and got more and more opaque where it needed to be:
Hope this all helps and goes a little bit beyond the infamous “what brushes do you use?” type of question.