Blog: Drawing Prompt 4 (waterworks)

waterworks fountain statue girl children illustration watercolor

So many meanings

Hi there, I’m glad you are here! Are you ready for prompt number four? It’s a single word one! When I made the book I thought those would be very easy, but in fact it was quite hard to make this an interesting illustration. At first I wrote down all the different meanings of ‘waterworks’ and the German translations. Then I started googling and searching hashtags on Instagram and Pinterest to find some inspiration. I found some pictures of fountains with statues in the middle of them and decided to include two meanings of ‘waterworks’.

Am I lazy?

I only sketched out this one idea instead of scribbling many different things and picking the most interesting one. Kasey Golden (who inspired me to make this prompt book) always points out how important it is to try out different things and to not always go with the first thing that comes to your mind. I mean… I am really happy with this piece, but maybe the result would be more fun if I tried out several ideas. I definitely want to work on that with the next prompts. I want my illustrations to get a bit more crazy and interesting.

waterworks pencil sketch presketch

How to choose a color scheme for natural sceneries?

What I really like about this illustration are the colors. This time I didn’t even plan them out, because I feel quite comfortable with nature scenes. Landscape studies and urban sketching helped a lot with that. I think the most important thing is to choose between warm and cold tones. When you decide to use more blue-ish greens then don’t throw in a red-brown bush or something like that. I mean, you can do that, but test it on a thumbnail before. Also, don’t only use the pure greens from your palette or tubes. Always mix in some browns, yellows or blues to get a more natural look.

Although I didn’t use a color test for this illustration I want to stress, that color thumbnails are very important, especially when a lot of stuff is going on and when you draw something that you usually don’t draw. This time I didn’t need it, but I have to admit that I was a bit insecure while painting.

waterworks lineart laura perlitz papierzucker

Conclusion

I feel like this prompt project is really helping me to improve my illustration skills, especially with backgrounds. Also it helps me getting started. Usually I waste a lot of time thinking about what to draw next or which of my collected ideas to choose first. Often this results in a blank piece of paper and procrastination. With this prompt book I just know what to do: the next prompt.

This fourth illustration is my favorite of this series so far. I like the colors, I like the outlines (I try to loosen them up a little by using random marks here and there and by overdrawing them a second time, but not too precisely) and I like the look of the characters. What do you think? What should I work on? Which aspects do you like the most about this piece? I would love to hear your thoughts!

waterworks fountain statue girl children illustration watercolor scan

Art supplies used

  • Arches Cold Pressed paper 300 gsm
  • Prismacolor Col-Erase Light Green
  • White Nights Watercolors
  • Pigma Micron 01 fineliner (dark brown)
  • uniball Signo white gel pen
  • Self-made light box

 

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