Art by Gabrielle Rose. I live in Oakland, CA. Watercolor and ink are my favorite media. Get in touch at hello@drawgabbydraw.com.

Zines/booklets

Where do you fellow artists get zines or booklets printed of your art? I’d like to make a little art booklet next year, but something tells me that using my home printer is not the most cost-effective method. Ideas?

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Would you be willing to let me in on the secret technique you use for your lichen!? So beautiful!

Sure. I use white Higgins ink and a tiny paintbrush:

image

Once the dark area is dry, I use the brush to apply the white ink on top of it. Pretty simple! I just figured it out by experimenting with the materials I have on hand. 

(The lichen in question.)

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I’m often asked what kind of watercolors I use. I use Prang watercolors. They are the only tray watercolors that I know of that are worth painting with. I realize I’m stuck in 5th grade art class. I don’t know why I’ve never transitioned to tube watercolors. Anyway, when you run out of a color in your tray you can order refills! I tend to run out of blue and black the fastest. 
There are a lot of watercolor options out there. I suggest trying a few kinds and seeing which you like best. Just avoid “student quality” paints. I bought a tube or two of student quality watercolor, and they were terrible. They turned to chalk on the paper after they dried.

I’m often asked what kind of watercolors I use. I use Prang watercolors. They are the only tray watercolors that I know of that are worth painting with. I realize I’m stuck in 5th grade art class. I don’t know why I’ve never transitioned to tube watercolors. Anyway, when you run out of a color in your tray you can order refills! I tend to run out of blue and black the fastest. 

There are a lot of watercolor options out there. I suggest trying a few kinds and seeing which you like best. Just avoid “student quality” paints. I bought a tube or two of student quality watercolor, and they were terrible. They turned to chalk on the paper after they dried.

Comments
Just a couple!
secousses asked you: What brush sizes do you use most when you’re painting?
I use three brushes for most paintings: a very tiny one for detail; a slender medium-sized one; and a larger round one. Here’s a picture of my brushes.
 
miichoufm asked you: I absolutely love your art, watercolor is my favorite medium. I’d just like to ask if you could give me some tips so that I can get better at it.
toyotacarolla asked you: Youre so good at watercolors! how do you do it? ive been trying to learn how to watercolor but i still need to work on it haha.
 
Here is a gif with the short answer. Read on for a longer answer.
The best tip for getting better at anything is practice. Practice, mess up, practice more.  Try different techniques. Put pigment on wet paper, on dry paper. Use different sized brushes. Try ink instead of paint. I can’t cram everything I’ve learned from years of practice into a paragraph. (Most of my painting knowledge is contained in my muscles and is hard to verbalize.) Here is a great blog post about hard work versus talent and how practicing technique eventually internalizes it.
I can give you tips on materials, however. Paper is very important. Make sure you’re using watercolor paper because it’s thick enough to hold up to water.  I usually use watercolor blocks. (More info about my materials can be found on my about page.)

Also, a few people asked about the difference between hot- and cold-pressed watercolor paper. I’m saving it for a separate post so keep an eye out.

Just a couple!

secousses asked you: What brush sizes do you use most when you’re painting?

I use three brushes for most paintings: a very tiny one for detail; a slender medium-sized one; and a larger round one. Here’s a picture of my brushes.

 

miichoufm asked you: I absolutely love your art, watercolor is my favorite medium. I’d just like to ask if you could give me some tips so that I can get better at it.

toyotacarolla asked you: Youre so good at watercolors! how do you do it? ive been trying to learn how to watercolor but i still need to work on it haha.

 

Here is a gif with the short answer. Read on for a longer answer.

The best tip for getting better at anything is practice. Practice, mess up, practice more.  Try different techniques. Put pigment on wet paper, on dry paper. Use different sized brushes. Try ink instead of paint. I can’t cram everything I’ve learned from years of practice into a paragraph. (Most of my painting knowledge is contained in my muscles and is hard to verbalize.) Here is a great blog post about hard work versus talent and how practicing technique eventually internalizes it.

I can give you tips on materials, however. Paper is very important. Make sure you’re using watercolor paper because it’s thick enough to hold up to water.  I usually use watercolor blocks. (More info about my materials can be found on my about page.)


Also, a few people asked about the difference between hot- and cold-pressed watercolor paper. I’m saving it for a separate post so keep an eye out.

Comments
Answers to questions asked.
snapfus asked you: Do you think it’s good, as an artist, to force yourself to do art? 
Well, it’s good to practice, and sometimes practice is boring and you don’t want to do it, so yes, I do think it’s good to force yourself to make art. I do it a lot. 
alexroperphoto asked you: Bad ass work, dude
Thanks. Dude. 
takethewords asked you: what do you do with your empty ink bottles?! they’re so pretty, you should put them in a display or something! (and also of course your art is gorgeous, i’ve spent most of today going back through your blog & looking at it all! in fact today i went out and bought some more watercolor supplies, i just got into it and found your work so inspiring :) 
(Thank you!) I have lots of ink bottles, but they are all full of ink. The only one I run out of regularly is my Speedball india ink, since I use it for almost all of my outlining, but it’s a boring plastic container, so I never save them. Glass ones I’ll probably save, since I’m kind of a pack rat I mean collector of things. I store them on this thing in the meantime.  
thisafunnything asked you: Your work is beautiful. How long have you been doing this? 
Thanks. I’ve been drawing since always, but I’ve been blogging here since 2009-ish. 
we-have-withered asked you: Dear! Your works are so beautiful! ‘;m curious about your technique!
Here’s a post with a short explanation. 
yaaryvanesaasked you: Esta bien padre tu trabajo :D, ¿como lo haces?
¡Gracias! Aqui está un post que explica como hago mis dibujitos. (Sorry for my Spanish.)
 


Answers to questions asked.

snapfus asked you: Do you think it’s good, as an artist, to force yourself to do art? 

Well, it’s good to practice, and sometimes practice is boring and you don’t want to do it, so yes, I do think it’s good to force yourself to make art. I do it a lot. 


alexroperphoto asked you: Bad ass work, dude

Thanks. Dude. 


takethewords asked you: what do you do with your empty ink bottles?! they’re so pretty, you should put them in a display or something! (and also of course your art is gorgeous, i’ve spent most of today going back through your blog & looking at it all! in fact today i went out and bought some more watercolor supplies, i just got into it and found your work so inspiring :) 

(Thank you!) I have lots of ink bottles, but they are all full of ink. The only one I run out of regularly is my Speedball india ink, since I use it for almost all of my outlining, but it’s a boring plastic container, so I never save them. Glass ones I’ll probably save, since I’m kind of a pack rat I mean collector of things. I store them on this thing in the meantime.  


thisafunnything asked you: Your work is beautiful. How long have you been doing this? 

Thanks. I’ve been drawing since always, but I’ve been blogging here since 2009-ish. 


we-have-withered asked you: Dear! Your works are so beautiful! ‘;m curious about your technique!

Here’s a post with a short explanation. 


yaaryvanesaasked you: Esta bien padre tu trabajo :D, ¿como lo haces?

¡Gracias! Aqui está un post que explica como hago mis dibujitos. (Sorry for my Spanish.)

 

Comments
Catching up on questions!

euqah: If I wanted a commission, would you do it?
Depends. Feel free to shoot me an email to discuss (but if it’s drawing characters or something like that probably not): hello at drawgabbydraw dot com
the-little-mouse: Hi, I want to buy some things from your store, but I was wondering if you will have any Art Surprise Packs available anytime soon? (I live in Australia so I’d prefer to just buy everything in one go.)
They are back in stock! Thanks for your interest!
dorkooroo: Hello! :—) I love your art! Just a question, do you use just any colour or do you follow a specific pallet? :—)
I usually have a specific color scheme in mind. I think of colors in groups of three, and apply two main colors first and then figure out what I should add next as I go along. But color is always intentional. It’s very important, so I don’t really make it up as I go, unless I’m just experimenting, but that’s different!
bofinken: Just wondering, as an artist myself trying too succeed, what do you do for a living? I mean, do you do something else than just painting? Just curious… :)
I have a low key day job at the moment, but I was a teacher of various things for six years until this past year. I decided to change to a different job so I would have more time outside of work for art, but I still do have a job. My time outside of whatever “real” job I’ve had has always been at least partly used for making art, but when I quit a very fulfilling teaching job to make even more time for artistic pursuits, that time became much more precious, and I spend quite a bit of time here at this little table painting and drawing, updating my shop, and maintaining an online presence. I don’t know that I would count myself a “successful” artist, but what I can tell you is that success in anything comes from practice and hard work. I might have to work a day job my whole life, but you know what? So did Henri Rousseau, and nobody’s calling him a failure. Good luck to you!


Catching up on questions!


euqah: If I wanted a commission, would you do it?

Depends. Feel free to shoot me an email to discuss (but if it’s drawing characters or something like that probably not): hello at drawgabbydraw dot com

the-little-mouse: Hi, I want to buy some things from your store, but I was wondering if you will have any Art Surprise Packs available anytime soon? (I live in Australia so I’d prefer to just buy everything in one go.)

They are back in stock! Thanks for your interest!

dorkooroo: Hello! :—) I love your art! Just a question, do you use just any colour or do you follow a specific pallet? :—)

I usually have a specific color scheme in mind. I think of colors in groups of three, and apply two main colors first and then figure out what I should add next as I go along. But color is always intentional. It’s very important, so I don’t really make it up as I go, unless I’m just experimenting, but that’s different!

bofinken: Just wondering, as an artist myself trying too succeed, what do you do for a living? I mean, do you do something else than just painting? Just curious… :)

I have a low key day job at the moment, but I was a teacher of various things for six years until this past year. I decided to change to a different job so I would have more time outside of work for art, but I still do have a job. My time outside of whatever “real” job I’ve had has always been at least partly used for making art, but when I quit a very fulfilling teaching job to make even more time for artistic pursuits, that time became much more precious, and I spend quite a bit of time here at this little table painting and drawing, updating my shop, and maintaining an online presence. I don’t know that I would count myself a “successful” artist, but what I can tell you is that success in anything comes from practice and hard work. I might have to work a day job my whole life, but you know what? So did Henri Rousseau, and nobody’s calling him a failure. Good luck to you!

Comments
A pile of inquiries! Here are some answers!
theskyisempty: Your work is so unique and inspiring! This might be mentioned somewhere in your tumblr, but I did not see it: Do you have a facebook fan page for your work?
Thank you, and no, I am not on the Facebooks.

andannie: Hi I love your art! I was wondering, what do you paint on? To keep the paper from wrinkling? Mat board?
(If I had a dollar for every time I answered this question I could finally quit my day job.) I use these. 
ambedoshoulders: could you possibly explain some of your watercoulor/inking techniques to an amateur? im starting on both mediums and admire your work often. 
This post has links to time lapses of me painting as well as a quick description of my technique. I learned everything I know by playing around with paints and inks on my own. Learning from accidents can be a way to develop technique, and I hope you’ll do some experimentation on your own in addition to implementing the tips that I provide. 
pookielandia: Your an amazing artist. I truly am fascinated by your work. How long have you been painting?
For a long time. I’ve been watercoloring for around 10-ish years, but I’ve always enjoyed drawing. 

subhum4n: I used to be extremely creative, and I could draw every hour of every day and come up with something different every time. Now its like, I start to draw or paint and I absolutely hate it. It sucks and I feel like im losing my favorite hobbies and talents. What do i do ): 
Aw, don’t be sad! These things pass. I often go through phases of high productivity followed by dry spells. When this happens, I accept the fact that I need a break and I put down my pens and brushes for a bit. Then I take the opportunity to experience new things. I’ll try to spend more time outside, read books I’ve been meaning to read, look at art by other people, watch movies. Sometimes collaborating with other people helps give my creativity a nudge. What often happens is that when I stop stressing about artist block is when I stop having artist block. Worrying about it too much will only stifle you. Answers and inspiration often come when you stop looking for them. 

barbaric-wasteland: i envy you 
It’s my curly hair, isn’t it? I bet it is. 

A pile of inquiries! Here are some answers!

theskyisempty: Your work is so unique and inspiring! This might be mentioned somewhere in your tumblr, but I did not see it: Do you have a facebook fan page for your work?

Thank you, and no, I am not on the Facebooks.



andannie: Hi I love your art! I was wondering, what do you paint on? To keep the paper from wrinkling? Mat board?

(If I had a dollar for every time I answered this question I could finally quit my day job.) I use these


ambedoshoulders: could you possibly explain some of your watercoulor/inking techniques to an amateur? im starting on both mediums and admire your work often. 

This post has links to time lapses of me painting as well as a quick description of my technique. I learned everything I know by playing around with paints and inks on my own. Learning from accidents can be a way to develop technique, and I hope you’ll do some experimentation on your own in addition to implementing the tips that I provide. 


pookielandia: Your an amazing artist. I truly am fascinated by your work. How long have you been painting?

For a long time. I’ve been watercoloring for around 10-ish years, but I’ve always enjoyed drawing. 


subhum4n: I used to be extremely creative, and I could draw every hour of every day and come up with something different every time. Now its like, I start to draw or paint and I absolutely hate it. It sucks and I feel like im losing my favorite hobbies and talents. What do i do ): 

Aw, don’t be sad! These things pass. I often go through phases of high productivity followed by dry spells. When this happens, I accept the fact that I need a break and I put down my pens and brushes for a bit. Then I take the opportunity to experience new things. I’ll try to spend more time outside, read books I’ve been meaning to read, look at art by other people, watch movies. Sometimes collaborating with other people helps give my creativity a nudge. What often happens is that when I stop stressing about artist block is when I stop having artist block. Worrying about it too much will only stifle you. Answers and inspiration often come when you stop looking for them. 


barbaric-wasteland: i envy you 

It’s my curly hair, isn’t it? I bet it is. 

Comments

I need some new music.

What are you guys listening to these days?

Comments
I have a couple questions in the inbox that I’m going to answer right now. Ok let’s go!
modeloffreedom: when you sit down to work, do you have set concept or idea in mind or do you just let the pen/brush flow?
A little of both. I do really enjoy making free form paintings and then adding spontaneous line work on top of them. Other times I have an image nagging at my brain that I specifically want to work through on paper. No matter what, though, I avoid getting married to an overly-specific image living in my brain. That only leads to disappointment in the final piece. 
beccalew: How do you get your inspiration for the things that you create?
I’ve mentioned my general inspirations in my FAQ, but each day holds specific inspiration, depending on what I’m reading, what I’m watching (read: usually something animated), and what I’m looking at in general. Fantastic or otherwise weird images linger awhile in my brain and end up working themselves out when I draw and paint. Things I reblog or mention here are good indications of what’s inspiring me lately.

frcknian: i know you get this a lot but how exactly do you get the effects on your art ? what specif technique do you use ? By the way your stuff is amazing !
Allow me to direct you to these time lapse videos of me drawing. Here’s a blog post about my process.

nottraditionalfire: This may be a silly thing to ask, but how is your watercolor paper so flat even after you paint on it? Mine gets a bit distorted when I use watercolors.
I use watercolor blocks. 

I have a couple questions in the inbox that I’m going to answer right now. Ok let’s go!

modeloffreedomwhen you sit down to work, do you have set concept or idea in mind or do you just let the pen/brush flow?

A little of both. I do really enjoy making free form paintings and then adding spontaneous line work on top of them. Other times I have an image nagging at my brain that I specifically want to work through on paper. No matter what, though, I avoid getting married to an overly-specific image living in my brain. That only leads to disappointment in the final piece. 


beccalew
How do you get your inspiration for the things that you create?

I’ve mentioned my general inspirations in my FAQ, but each day holds specific inspiration, depending on what I’m reading, what I’m watching (read: usually something animated), and what I’m looking at in general. Fantastic or otherwise weird images linger awhile in my brain and end up working themselves out when I draw and paint. Things I reblog or mention here are good indications of what’s inspiring me lately.


frckniani know you get this a lot but how exactly do you get the effects on your art ? what specif technique do you use ? By the way your stuff is amazing !

Allow me to direct you to these time lapse videos of me drawing. Here’s a blog post about my process.

nottraditionalfireThis may be a silly thing to ask, but how is your watercolor paper so flat even after you paint on it? Mine gets a bit distorted when I use watercolors.

I use watercolor blocks

Comments

An art question

I’ve been working and getting ready for this and thus haven’t had much time for drawing. So how about a question: what subjects do you repeatedly portray in your art? Why?

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Blob doodle!
By the way, if I ever posted a blob that wasn’t doodled upon, would anyone in internet land draw on it and maybe submit it to draw Gabby draw! ?

Blob doodle!

By the way, if I ever posted a blob that wasn’t doodled upon, would anyone in internet land draw on it and maybe submit it to draw Gabby draw! ?

Comments
Comments
Because I just need to but I don’t have any good ideas, just terrible ones. Any good ideas out there in the tumblrverse?
EDIT: Wow! Fun suggestions! That was a good doodling exercise. I might put the tablet away now and try to make some of these in real life.

Because I just need to but I don’t have any good ideas, just terrible ones. Any good ideas out there in the tumblrverse?

EDIT: Wow! Fun suggestions! That was a good doodling exercise. I might put the tablet away now and try to make some of these in real life.

Comments
norrrfolk asked:
How is your art sooo amazing !! You and me kinda have the same style a little, and we have the same favorite mediums :) haha. Lately tho, I haven't been doing my art :/ its been about 2 months ? terrible and just kinda in a slump. Any tips on how to get out of this ?

People have asked me this before. I’m flattered that anyone thinks I have some particular special insight into this, but I assure you I get into slumps just as much as the next person! A few things that work for me and that have been suggested to me:

  • Do something that is not art. 
  • Go somewhere else. Go outside. Go on a walk. Go see a movie. Go to a friend’s house.
  • Instead of thinking about output, think about input. Research artists who work in your medium (or any media, really) and find a new favorite. 
  • Collaborate with someone. By collaborating, you’ll put limits and boundaries on what you can make based on the requirements of your collaboration. We are more creative when we have to work inside of a box than when we can do whatever we want.
  • Finally, just sit down and draw (or take a picture or sculpt or whatever). Sometimes, you just have to do it, no matter how uninspired you feel.

Any other thoughts from followers and readers of this blog? Please do share in the Disqus comments in this post’s permalink.

Comments