Friday, January 7, 2011

Mentorship Lessons: Learning, Experimenting and Doodling - by Debbie Ridpath Ohi

As I do more illustrating, I'm starting to hit limits with my limited knowledge of Corel Painter. Until the L.A. conference, I'd been lazy, and not bothering to learn more than what was absolutely necessary. As a result of my Mentorship sessions at the SCBWI conference in L.A. last year, however, I've been experimenting more with the software I use (Corel Painter XI) as well as started to learn Photoshop.
When I first bought Corel Painter, I never thought I'd ever want to create my own brushes. Why bother when Painter gives us perfectly serviceable brush tools? Now I'm hitting limits with the default settings and beginning to create my own custom brushes. As I start to become comfortable with my own style (and yes! I'm actually settling into a style! More on this is a future post), I'm pickier about my brushes.
Those of you who work with actual physical art materials are already familiar with this, of course, but as someone with no art training, this is relatively new to me. As I mentioned in the comments section of Eliza's previous post, I've started doing daily doodles. I post many of these in the private collab online sketchbook I have with my illustrator friend, Beckett Gladney, but also post some on the front page of
Here's one of the drawings I did today while experimenting with a custom brush I created in Corel Painter. It's a variant of the RealDrippyPen brush. I started at the top without really knowing what I was going to draw, just wanting to try out my custom brush, and kept going.
My title for this piece: "Decisions, Decision." :-)

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