digital art portrait
"Creativity is....inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun." —Mary Lou Cook

Some time ago, I remember saying that of all directions I was exploring in my art, the one that least interested me was digital art. I think I might have even used the word....dare I say it? Never.

You see how our mothers were right when they said never say never? Because here I am, absolutely in love with my stylus and iPad and the whole idea of digitally reworking or creating art on my tablet.

Since I have started sharing my digital creations, people have asked me how I do this art. I have to give credit where credit is due. I took a three week online course, Paint and Pixels and what a learning experience it was. Robin Laws and Yvette Newport are wonderful supportive teachers, but more than that, their digital art is really inspiring.

I still have not tried many of the new techniques in the final lessons because I keep getting sidetracked by my watercolours or by other interests. However, I intend to savour each lesson and complete all assignments in time. This is the beauty of learning at your own pace on an online course. In our Facebook group everyone shares their art and we can see all the various interpretations of the lessons. Yvette has created a board on her Pinterest page where all our art is available for everyone to see.

Here is one of the amazing ways that digital art can be applied. This purple acrylic sketch below was done some time ago in my Strathmore Visual Arts Sketchbook and I was at a standstill with it. I uploaded it into several different apps on my iPad and reworked it. You can see the process below. I wanted to have a vintage look in the final piece. For now, she has no name, no title and she exists only in the virtual world.

sketchbook acrylic drawing
uploaded sketch
uploaded sketch digital refinements
trying different digital apps
final digital sketch without background additions
Final digital rework for now

Digital Art Advantage

Of course the greatest advantage of digital art is being able to start a project anywhere, anytime, as long as the iPad and stylus are available. There is no prep work, no mess to clean up. Any mistakes can easily be erased, blended in, or undone altogether with a few clicks of the undo button.

The beauty of digital art is that there are so many possibilities once the art is taken out of the digital world and brought back into the traditional, real world! Imagine being able to print original art on cards, canvas, shirts, mugs, calendars, etc. The possibilities are endless.

Once I get through more of the lessons, I will also learn to take the digital art and transfer all or parts of it to a canvas and continue along with more traditional methods to completion.

So now, I find myself eating my words. I love digital art. In many ways it is easier than traditional art but that is not to say that there isn't skill involved. The apps provide an array of possibilities whether it is the look of the piece, the colours, the background, the texture, etc. The artist must make choices and apply them successfully.

But the fun is in trying different things without fear.

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