Wednesday, 9 November 2016

WOYWW 388 More Digital Mandalas and some Gold

Not a lot of time for physical art since I last showed WOYWW (What’s On Your Workdesk Wednesday) but in between different activities I have done a bit more on the iPad and drawn some more mandalas. It’s great being able to take the iPad with me, and do drawing while I am waiting for hospital appointments, etc. It’s so much less hassle than taking physical paper and pens etc. and I am actually doing more drawing now than I did before.

One of the great things about drawing on the iPad is that you can work in layers. This means that you can draw an outline and save that as an image, and then add further layers for the colour. You therefore preserve the original and can colour it again and again in different hues, creating endless variety. Also, if you make a mistake and need to erase anything (like going over the lines!) you can do so without destroying the original drawing.

This one, which I have called “Fleur de Lys Mandala” is just the outline so far.

Fleur De Lis Mandala Outline

Here are a couple more. The first one is “Floral Mandala” – first the outline, then coloured with a mixture of pinks and purples. You will see that the central Zengem is surrounded by smaller drop-shaped Zengems.

Floral Mandala Outline

Floral Mandala Pinks & Purples

Finally, “Spiral Mandala.” This one started out as a demonstration, as I was showing someone the cool mirror technique in the PaintStorm app, and I liked what I’d done, so I developed it further. It’s not so intricate as the previous ones, but I like its boldness.

Spiral Mandala Outline

Spiral Mandala Green and Orange

You will see that on the coloured ones, I have added a bit of background. I did this by creating a new layer and dragging it down beneath the outline drawing layer, and painted gently, using a large soft airbrush with about 50 percent opacity. Because the layer is beneath the others, when you colour, the background goes “behind” the drawing. Working in the Procreate app, all the layers are transparent so you can achieve this effect with ease.

You can also see that I have shaded some areas of colouring. In the first one, “Floral Mandala,” I have painted the base of the leaves only, and then “pulled up” the colour using the smudge tool. In the “Spiral Mandala,” I have coloured the two areas with different colours and then used the smudge tool to blend the junction between two adjacent colours. The Apple Pencil is a joy to use, and so intuitive – it feels like a normal pen or pencil or marker, and you soon forget that you are not working with regular media.

Also over the past few weeks, I have been working on the visual aids for my Bible study group – we are studying the Tabernacle in the Wilderness at the moment, as detailed in the Book of Exodus, and I have decided to revamp my original simple line drawings and render them in full colour using Procreate, and also to create some new ones. There is quite a preponderance of shiny metal to be rendered, and I have always struggled with this, so I have been working on the technique, following some tutorials on Youtube. Following along with one and following the artist more or less stroke by stroke for practice, I drew this beetle and rendered it in metallic gold. He was working with coloured pencils, but you can achieve the same effect on the iPad.

Gold Beetle Tutorial

Drawing the pillars at the entrance to the Tabernacle, I came up with this:

Door Pillars - Cropped

which I hope look sufficiently shiny and gold! With this project, I am killing two birds with one stone – producing new artwork for the course, and honing my drawing and painting skills. I am planning on doing a series of studies in shiny and reflective surfaces because it’s an area that’s always fascinated me, and which so far has eluded me. I am learning that it’s more a question of looking, and painting exactly what you see, and trying to forget that it is gold and shiny – painting areas of distinct dark and light with quite a hard demarcation between them gives a better illusion of shininess. Hopefully I shall improve as time goes on!

Health Update

I saw the stoma nurse last week and she confirmed the GP’s opinion that I have developed a hernia. She agreed that repair is not really an option, and that the way forward is support, and this afternoon a young lady from a company specialising in support garments for ostomates (people with stomas) came to the house to fit me with something suitable – she was absolutely delightful and we parted with a hug – she is originally from an African country and is petite and quite beautiful, and rejoices in the name of Moreblessing!! I certainly felt blessed by her presence. We tried various samples she’d brought along and found that belts are no good for me – they just roll up, so pants it is. I am having some bespoke ones made up, medium size with a smaller waist and larger legs. Even trying on a pair which didn’t fit properly, I could immediately feel the benefit of the support. I have chosen a beige pair with lace – they look really pretty and not like medical equipment! To start with they will just make up one for me, and if I am happy with it, I can order more. I am allowed three in one year on prescription, and I don’t want to waste the prescription by ordering three all at once and then finding that they are no good. They will take a maximum of four weeks to arrive but it should be quicker than that.

When I saw the stoma nurse she told me I had “textbook skin” and “whatever you are doing, keep on doing it!” which was very encouraging. She was pleased with Kermit’s appearance and then said they were preparing a training booklet for the staff, and were including a series of photos of parastomal skin from worst to best – and she wants a picture of Kermit and his surrounding skin, to feature as the best!! They will call me in when they want to do it. So Kermit and I are going to be famous! Someone on the forum said Kermit would want to make celebrity appearances from now on, in shows like “Dancing with the Stomas,” and “Stoma’s Got Talent” haha!! She added that if Kermit wanted to autograph the book, then things could get a bit messy…

So things are looking up on all fronts. I am feeling much better now.


  1. Love those mandalas Shoshi. Love your humour re health! you just have to see the funny side otherwise things would overwhelm eh?
    Judy x

  2. Hi Shoshi, lovely to hear you are doing so well. At least the hernia problem is getting sorted. We must be doing something right, my surgeons Nurse Specialist has asked me if I'd be willing to do some talks at evenings they have for Bowel Cancer/Stoma patients! Gorgeous Mandalas, it's incredible what we can do digitally these days, isn't it? Have a lovely week, Love & Hugs to you both, Shaz xx

  3. LOL, that's so funny about Kermit being famous! Good news that they found a solution to your hernia. I have one too that comes and goes, but my GP told me at this point it doesn't warrant an intervention, so I'll just keep an eye on it. I know they can be dangerous - one of my aunts died of complications of a strangulated hernia, so we need to be aware of the risks.
    I absolutely adore your mandalas! You're right - the possibilities are endless when you go digital. You can change the colours with a simple slider and find infinite combinations of effects with the layer modes as well. Have fun playing! I can't believe you drew that bug and columns from scratch! Very impressive!
    I was glad to see you take part in WOYWW this week - I'm right behind you on the list!

  4. You're mandalas are beautiful and I can't get over how shiny and metallic the beetle and pillars are - they are absolutely amazing - you clever gal! I love your sense of humour regarding the stoma - I bet the nurses love dealing with you as I'm sure a lot of their patients aren't as positive and cheerful as you! I imagine you'd be a breath of fresh air to them.
    Take care and have a good week,
    Diana xx

  5. Happy WOYWW. I told hubby about your IPad art - very unlikely that our bank account will allow such a big purchase for Xmas this year, but at least the idea is in his head now! Glad to hear that you are feeling better. Ali x #12

  6. Love your drawings you are so talented,

    Happy WOYWDW Lilian B #17

  7. Hi Shoshi, great to see you busy and loving the art work. Happy crafty woyww, Angela x 19

  8. OMgosh! Just stunning work. I love them!

    Glad to hear about the health update and that you found someone lovely to help you through getting the support. Good news about the skin! Glad Kermit can be one of your claims to fame!

    Happy WOYWW
    Sharon K #39

  9. loving your digital mandalas! So amazing to see your sense of humour, I hope the support works for you and Kermit! Helen #2

  10. Your i-pad work is stunning, and that beetle - WOW! Gorgeous work! I hope everything works out well for you and your hernia, it sounds like you have a lot of wonderful people looking out for you! Thanks for sharing! Lindart #47

  11. Hi Shoshi. Well, where to start? I'm not into this Mandala thing - but can certainly appreciate how hard you have worked, and the good results you are getting. Well done - they are really coming on - you'll be writing your own book of patterns before too long - possibly autographed by Kermit, by the sound of it??!! Glad you are feeling a lot better. Sorry I haven't been properly in touch... there are so many more hours in a day now, but still am behind with my emails...!
    Trust the study on the Tabernacle goes well. Any extra ideas - pop over to our church website and listen to the talks we had...
    Take care. God bless.
    Margaret #3

  12. Your digital drawings are getting better and better! I might have to download the Paintstorm app and try it out! Have a great week! ~Heather~ WOYWW #51


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