I had such fun drawing this little teddy bear on her tricycle today! I’ve wanted to try painting on brown card stock for a while now, and when a client asked me to do a bear illustration, I finally found a subject that would work on this paper. There’s a few things that I would like to improve on next time I work on this paper, but all in all I’m quite happy with my first attempt. It was really fun working in a new way and I’m quite keen to do a whole range of these kind of illustrations.

I’d like to do a few more illustrations in this way before posting about the technique I used here, but here is a summary of what I liked and what I’d like to improve on:

What I liked about working on brown card stock:

  • I photocopied my rough drawing onto the paper before starting to paint – a big time-saver and I was pleased with the quality of the photocopied image on this paper.
  • Photocopying my rough image means my final illustration is looser than when I trace and re-draw my illustration.
  • I liked that I could “lift” the gouache off the paper after it had dried to get a more transparent effect. All in all this paper was quite forgiving in terms of correcting mistakes and building the paint to create the texture and level of transparency I wanted.
  • My beloved oil-based pencils (Cretacolor Nero pencils) works really well on this paper because of its slightly rough texture.

What I’d like to improve on:

  • I’m not a 100% sure that I like my colour scheme – the colours appear a little different on this paper than I’m used to, so it will take a little practice to get the colours the way I like them.
  • At first I went for thicker paint that I applied as flat colour, but I realise that I like the effect of building up thinner layers better – it creates more texture.
  • I need to re-think the way I do shadows. On white paper I normally add them before I do colour, in a light grey wash. On this paper, however, the shadows completely disappear under the coloured paint.
Perhaps my thoughts will help some of you who would like to try something new – I can really recommend it to keep things fresh! :)

This week’s Illustration Friday topic is Wheel.