Wednesday, October 9, 2019


The artist and teacher, Val Webb, offers online courses all the time and they are very reasonable in price.  She gives you TONS of information, including printouts to use and lots of good experience in something new.  So I thought I'd try her Carbon Pencil class - it's the garden pollinator class using carbon pencils and a graphite I'd never heard of = a 9XXB.  I had most of the materials she's using so I didn't have to invest too much in it other than the cost for the course.  Check out her website, if you're interested in drawing or painting (I've taken 2 classes from her and came away both times with lots of new stuff to try and use in my own work).  

Now, I have to say, one big draw-back to drawing like this is patience.  I don't have any, and I want to rush.  Also, I've found I have a heavy hand when drawing, so when Val says (on the videos) to "lightly draw" I just go in like always.  Doing this, I even was too heavy-handed with my tracing the initial drawing onto the watercolor paper because, when it came to laying down the 9XXB graphite and the carbon pencils, I had a white line that was difficult to cover.  I guess I'll get the hang of it.  Val's work in the carbon pencils is just stunning and I don't expect to get to that level without a LOT of practice.  

I did this little butterfly twice because I was not satisfied with the outcome on the Arches HP block - it wouldn't lift back to white with the eraser and was a bit smeary.  Thought I'd get a better look to the 2nd try and tried the Stonehenge Aqua Hotpress.  I like the top one best, maybe because I spent more time on it?

Oh, well, learning learning learning....

I am also going back to the free Strathmore class I signed up for and never got past the first class.  It's about gouache and that's another medium I've rarely used.  I am liking it but have only dipped my toe in so far with the exercises to get used to the medium.  Strathmore offers free classes online all the time.  I am on their mailing list so I get notified when new classes are going to start.  So far, they have been very good and full of information and good stuff - and they are free!  Check them out at  and see what they have there (and they always have new things being added).  I'll share some of that work soon.  

Hope you are having a wonderful October so far.  Our heat is gone and it feels like fall.  Now, just add some trees changing colors and it will lift me out of this slump I've been in for a month or so.  


L said...

I think it’s great that your passion for creating art is so strong, we should always keep learning, sounds like a wonderful class and it’s a beautiful butterfly!

martinealison said...


J'aime beaucoup ce petit billet et votre détermination à vouloir faire bien.
Un très joli papillon !
Continuez à papillonner avec vos crayons !

Gros bisous 🌸

Debbie Nolan said...

Rhonda - I think the butterflies are beautiful. What a fun way to learn a new drawing technique. I have never used carbon pencils before. Enjoy your class friend. Have a great weekend - Hugs!