Today I’m joining my friend Taniesa over at Trinity Stamps to celebrate her company’s 4th anniversary! She’s one of my patrons, but honestly I’d have celebrated her milestone anyway because WHO DOESN’T LOVE GNOMES? Heehee!!

I’m additionally sharing a little more info at the end of today’s video about the class I spoke of in yesterday’s comparison of crafty vs artist grade watercolor markers…..and since that class is all about national parks, I gave this cute viking gnome a park to go for a walk in. With any luck he won’t chop down any ancient redwood trees with that axe!?!?


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

The markers are Sketchmarker Aqua pens, and they’re my new favorite crafty watercolor marker. They have really nice nibs that feel Copic-like. They have some of the same challenges as other crafty brands (like a few have color shifts when they hit water), but if you learn to use their properties rather than fight them, the shifts can be super cool.

When coloring “around” a stamped image, if the colors of the background are lighter than foreground, you could just splishsplash all the lighter background then cover it with the foreground colors. But with this gnome I wanted some light horns and metal, so I had to deal with coloring around him. I never worry about it being perfect – and I hope that frees you to do the same. Art is expression, and totally loses expressiveness when we try to make everything exactly perfect!

Yesterday’s comparison of crafty vs artist grade watercolor markers is here. And on Friday I’ll be using the other set for a travel sketch – I’m thinking Yellowstone maybe, since I used to live near there on the Montana side of the park – and you’ll see a real-life comparison of these two sets. If you prefer blog notifications rather than YT ones, you can subscribe to my blog here.

New water-based marker class

Here’s the fun Travel Sketches class with 5 national parks! I’m just sayin’….you’ll have a blast. And after the folks taking the Wash and Ink class and rocking it (with students saying “I can’t believe it looks like a mountain!” and surprising themselves that they CAN do it!), I’m really looking forward to seeing the student work in this class too!


I was also sent the cute Whale Done set – and of course had to add it to my post! And since I’m busy on National Parks this week, I did find ONE park that’s 95% underwater: Biscayne National Park in Florida! I do realize this whale wouldn’t fit in it since it’s 12 feet of water, but ya know, an artist’s gotta do what an artist’s gotta do! PS I’ve created a short video for this that’s an Artventure App exclusive – once the app stores update (today? tomorrow? who knows….) then it’ll be in the watercolor lesson of the $3 Tiny Tutorials class.


Hop along with Trinity by starting on their blog here!


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