Beginner attempts at Pysanky: Ukrainian Egg Decorating Part 2

Beginner attempts at Pysanky: Ukrainian Egg Decorating Part 2

This is a 2 part series – yesterday I shared Etching in part 1, which is way more forgiving than the mess I made with color!

In part 2, I’m adding color – I still haven’t gotten very “clean” with my application of wax, but thought I’d still share what I’m learning. Maybe it’ll inspire you to find someone at your local arts center to take a class from sometime… I think in-person teaching would be much more helpful; I’ve watched over 20 videos and I think I need a Ukrainian artist to hover over me and tell me where I’m going wrong! 🙂 I’ve been talking with someone in eastern Ukraine who has a friend who’d be glad to give me some pointers, so I’m looking forward to a vacation when the war is over!

If you’d like to help Ukrainian artists, search Etsy for Pysanky eggs and Ukraine for the country. Lots of them allow you to help by purchasing digital images of their creations – and what little we can do helps so much!

DISCLAIMER: Do not eat eggs made with pysanky dyes! There are Paas dyes if you plan to do that, those are deliberately made consumable.

A reminder: I’m using this kit, primarily, but you can get smaller sets of colors (I’d recommend that, I didn’t need all the colors for sure) and probably make do with one middle-sized kitska and a small bit of wax. See the supply list for some recommendations.

Video

Watch the video below or click here to see it on YouTube.

48 Triangle Pysanky design

This is a traditional way to divide an egg: 8 vertical lines at equal distance; 1 straight horizontal “equator”; then X’s that cross two of the 8 sections. There are tons of tutorials on drawing the guidelines in different order, but what I shared in the video is what’s working for me. The design leaves you with basically two shapes to use to create repeatable patterns – 4 hexagons including a “star” at the center of it, and diamonds all over the rest of the egg. (The top and bottom when viewed from above or below are hexagons too.)

The egg demo’d in the video is one I kept relatively straightforward so you get the idea of how color is added:

Variations on the demo egg

The fun of pysanky, for me, is altering one part or another of the design each time. Here I changed to pink instead of turquoise:

Then I added swirls instead of center petals, which makes it feel a bit like a fleur-de-lis! The background colors are turquoise and blue – with just a small color shift, it almost makes them look blended!

On this one I added a dotted line around the 48 triangle design – you can do all kinds of variations once you decide on one design and keep going!

The rest of the eggs!

So many eggs, so much FUN! See the video for a tidbit on each.

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art

Beginner attempts at Pysanky: Ukrainian Egg Decorating Part 1

Beginner attempts at Pysanky: Ukrainian Egg Decorating Part 1

I’ve wanted to try Pysanky for SO long – and with the war going on in Ukraine, I thought this might just be the year to give it a go. I did not expect this to be as hard for me! So in today’s tutorial I’ll share how to make etched eggs – which are much easier with my wonky lines since tone-on-tone doesn’t show off th wobbliness! Tomorrow I’ll get into color (it’s the week before Easter so I’m getting both videos out early this week.)

Another bonus to these etched eggs? You don’t need a lot of supplies. Or at least they’re things at your local store, aside from the kitska! And I know some of you got the fluid writer when I shared that a while back, so you can use that.

Video

Watch the video below or click here to see it on YouTube.

48 Triangle Pysanky design

This is a traditional way to divide an egg: 8 vertical lines at equal distance; 1 straight horizontal “equator”; then X’s that cross two of the 8 sections. There are tons of tutorials on drawing the guidelines in different order, but what I shared in the video is what’s working for me. The design leaves you with basically two shapes to use to create repeatable patterns – 4 hexagons including a “star” at the center of it, and diamonds all over the rest of the egg. (The top and bottom when viewed from above or below are hexagons too.)

Today’s egg

I kept it pretty simple – big flowers in the hexagons, and smaller ones everywhere else there was a crisscross in the lines. And a few dots along some of the lines along the way.

This one has four BIG sunflowers in the four hexagons – then random scribbly flower shapes over the rest. Lots of time in the etching bath!

One of my early ones; I didn’t know about the 48 triangle design so I was winging it – and once I found there was a way to organize my shapes, my eggs got better.

A single big sunflower on two sides, and polka dots elsewhere…

Another early attempt, with very little time in the etching bath:

Lots of etching time…and I think I had let it float on the top of the etching bath for an extra minute on one side, and it became weak…put my finger right thorugh it!

Here’s a peek at tomorrow’s color chaos….be sure to pop on by to catch it!

Taking the rest of the week off

As we lead up to Easter I’ll be taking time away from email and social (though I have social posts with Easter-y things prepared for the rest of the week!) so I’ll only be responding to urgent things. But I’ll be back in full swing next Monday so I look forward to seeing yall then!

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art

Quick idea: Finishing cards from a few months ago

Quick idea: Finishing cards from a few months ago

I can’t always respond to questions by buying supplies to test – but when several folks asked if I knew what the quality level is for the wax seal supplies that Altenew sells, I figured I could use that “hello” stamp – so I’d toss a few wax items in the cart too. I think I hit a busy time because it took quite a while to get my order – but once I got it I wanted to try them out!

Supplies for this project are linked at the end of this post. Compensated affiliate links may be used at no cost to you.

Video

Watch the video below or click HERE to view it on YouTube.

First off – I do love the hello stamp! I am not as big a fan of my stamping. I’m a terrible normal stamper (ink on paper) so some of this might be me – but I do have more trouble getting clear impressions using less-than-optimal wax. The red one is the only one that makes me want to peel it all apart and restart with new vellum.

The blue color is super pretty – while it doesn’t go with the kind of blue in the background all that well, the vellum kind of makes that not a big issue.

This is the rose gold – same color as the hexagon-shaped beads I bought.

And here’s the brighter gold; you can see what the wax quality can do to a stamp, but as long as it reads clearly, an angle like this only emphasizes scratchy marks in the wax that the average person will never notice. Your card recipient would just LOVE that there’s a wax seal on their card!

Reminder

Be sure to consider seals on cards as embellishments; if you do like I do and keep the dimension to a minimum underneath a thick item so the post office doesn’t eat the card in their machine – do that with these.

The card backgrounds

Painting the backgrounds:

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art

Faux foil with gold scratchboard

Faux foil with gold scratchboard

I don’t have a foiling machine or any of those supplies….and being afraid of a rabbit hole that requires a machine, I’ve stayed away. But I think I found a way I can get some of the sparkle of foil with a much smaller investment in supplies!

Video

Watch the video below or click HERE to see it on YouTube.

Look at all that shine – with only a little package of this gold and ink paper!

Don’t forget the inside! This sentiment is from “All About You.”

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art

Birds and Flowers in Pastel Pencils

Birds and Flowers in Pastel Pencils

I recently came across my Mom’s old pastel tools….she sent them to me years ago along with a bunch of boxes of all sorts of brands of pastels she used for years! I did a drawing or two and kept saying I’d get back to them….and it’s about time. I’ve been seeing a lot of hyperrealistic wildlife art on Instagram that gave me motivation!

Meet Mom’s pastel shapers – and what turns out to be a pencil sharpener!

Supplies for this project are linked at the end of this post. Compensated affiliate links may be used at no cost to you.

First, about Colin Bradley!

I found him by looking for videos on HOW to use the pastel shapers I’d found in Mom’s stuff. And he has a treasure trove of video instruction. Do you miss Bob Ross? You’ll enjoy Colin.

I just signed up for his online school – the lifetime membership, which converts to $273 for those wondering. Crazy amounts of content, and I’m excited to even have his videos running while I’m working on other stuff. It gets quiet around here and I think he’ll be a soothing voice in the studio – not to mention all his wonderful art tips. For all of you who keep saying I need to teach animal classes? See if Colin is up your alley! (And no I get no commission, I’m just a fan.)

And now, my video

I did attempt to use a hand held pencil sharpener but that only sometimes worked. If the pencil was too soft – the navy blue just didn’t want to play nice – then the only solution is a knife or sandpaper block.

Watch the video below or click HERE to see it on YouTube.

The projects

First I tried a regular card, using the Life Lasts set, new from Colorado Craft Company. I had to mask out just the tiniest but of one leaf and the bird’s head to get them to nest together nicely. But I did this on Arches Drawing Paper which got weirdly pilly. I’ve not been a superfan of the paper, but I’m trying a lot on it to see if I find a sweet spot for what works well. This aint it, lol!

There was the slightest bit of black ink that was moved into the color on the card – so I decided not to try black ink again. Instead – I had actual pastel paper, so gave it a whirl. Bigger texture, not as soft – but it worked like a charm. (I also have some pastelbord to try too.) And since I like working on colored papers this was enjoyable!

When finished, both got 2 coats of fixatif. Float the spray down over the art from 6-12 inches, a light coat, then a second light coat. It darkens the color – so if you don’t want the color change, just frame it asap.

Bloghop

There’s suppose to be a bloghop today with CCC – but I didn’t get a list, so check it out by hading over to the CCC blog!

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art

Brusho Landscape – with a bleach discovery!

Brusho Landscape – with a bleach discovery!

I haven’t played with watercolor powders in what feels like eons – but lately I’ve gotten them out again! And I made a fun little discovery. Even if you don’t paint fine art with these, you’ll want to get out a little bleach with your art supplies next time you get out the Brusho!

Video

As I’ll show you in the video – I had a bunch of failed paintings first. One was toooo bright and the detail was all washed out. The other was better colorwise – but I didn’t retain white. Both of those I painted with black ink to at least get some “calligraphy” practice – creating loose linework with a brush, developing my own style.

Imagine what you might try with bleach on your next watercolor powder project. Stars in a galaxy sky….use bleach in an aquabrush to do lettering….all kinds of fun stuff! Colors used: Yellow Ochre, Grey, and Olive Green.

On one of my practice paintings I tested out a drop of bleach – and realized it’d work on Brusho too! While there’s more testing to go, full-strength bleach seemed to make a hard edge so I tried a mix and it did a better job for me.

This was one of my not-so-great experiements. Wayyyy too bright, and before adding the black ink it was just a mess with no definition. So I used the opportunity to practice inking with a brush – not to let a piece of paper go til it teaches me all it can!

My other painting of a rainy road – again served as a way to practice my brush calligraphy. Never let a

If you’re new to these powders and want to see what else they can do, check out the card and other projects in this compilation post:

FYI – Ink with bleach

In case you forgot about this crazy ink painting video – it’s what got me thinking about bleach.

Supplies

Some product may be provided by manufacturers for review and use. Compensated affiliate links are here at no cost to you. If you choose to shop using my EH (Ellen Hutson) links, please accept cookies on that site in order to retain the link to my blog, or that compensation does not happen for me. I appreciate your support of my work with your purchases! Full affiliate and product disclosure | My trusted partners in art