Once Upon A Time


Once upon a time, Effy Wild offered a class called Radiant Faces.

I worked this class in several journals, on separate pieces of paper, various substrates.

I picked up one of those “practice” journals that I used back then and I played on a few pages.  Then I went looking for what was in the journal.

I found one sketch that I had done for the first lesson of Radiant Faces…that I disliked so much that I had painted over the sketch.  I used yellow paint — not at all a thick coat.  The lines underneath showed through the paint and the sketch actually looked so much … better through that paint.  I grabbed a pencil and I corrected the lines and the things that had originally bothered me about the sketch.

Then I used colored pencils and a felt tip pen and created this:

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A few pages on in the journal, I had repeated the sketch, aiming for loose and free.

This sketch had not been painted over, but I wasn’t happy with her either.  Enter the eraser and pencil.

Then, I added a base layer of paint for the skin–which ended up being skin, hair and everything else…then added paint for the hair.  I let it dry, as much as I was able…and then used colored pencils to finish her.

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I think I am happier with these two versions of that original piece (I can’t remember what now)–than the piece that I called the real deal for the class itself.

Plus, I had fun with the colored pencils and not filling in every single space, every strand of hair.

I think I need more of this in my life.

There is one other sketch in that journal that I mean to paint out–or add color to in some way.  I sketched out a male mermaid–with a tree.

This was before LifeBook 2015 and Tam did a lesson on drawing males.  I just sort of winger it.  He wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t the greatest either.  I touched up the sketch a little bit–his hair was killing me…male mermaids only need so much hair compared to the female mermaids.  The tree is going to have to take a hike when I show up with paint.  But–I do mean to finish him.

Stay tuned.  I’ll post him when he is done.


8 thoughts on “Once Upon A Time

  1. Good for you for finishing Radiant faces and great that you revisited your practice journal and made revisions. I like what you have done with these two girls. The colored pencil made the pieces look loose and relax. I was also in the class and have not finished. It took me more than six months to start a lesson. fear got the better of me then. Now, I am taking my time with each lesson.


    • Thank you, Carrie. Radiant was such a revelation for me. I keep going back and revisiting lessons there. When I start to feel bad about not being able to do something ‘perfectly’ watching Effy do her take on things and do things differently has really helped me. My daughter (she’s 14yo) started working through online classes as well…after her very first one, she came to me and said she didn’t want to do it again for awhile because watching the videos made her feel bad. It took her awhile, but she did go back and watch one video at a time…not draw or anything while she watched…and then go away from the computer, away from everything, and practice doing things her way…and that is just amazing to me, so watch her evolution and how she does things her way…sometimes you have to step back and slow down and find your own way…it’s a good thing. 🙂

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      • That was good to hear and I’m glad that you shared your daughter’s journey with her girls. I used to draw my girls along with the video and it was just frustrating especially if you do not have all the materials being used, if you expect more from yourself and expect that there will be a magical moment when your work will look exactly the same as the teacher’s work. It took a while for me to understand that it would be best to watch the videos first then sit down and make my own version. The first time I did it was one of the most happiest art day I had. I learned how to love what I can do and accept that there is a big room for improvement. Hooray for your daughter for doing just the same. She will greatly value all of her work and love and cherish what she can do and eagerly experiment on what is still out there.


      • If it wasn’t fr Effy’s Radiant Faces I would never have thought hey watch all the videos first and then draw…as weird as it sounds I was so busy trying to “keep up” with the videos, I thought I had to do everything with the video that very moment…and to learn that I could relax, watch the videos, and then come back and create along with the videos, or try it myself without the videos…that was such a revelation for me. 🙂

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      • True! Sometimes we get so engaged in the moment when we watch the videos that we forget to relax and just watch, let the ideas sink in and let our imaginations guide us. Radiant Faces taught us a lot of things, that is so good to know.


      • Great to know! Radiant faces was my first and only online class to date and I am saving up for Radiant II. Also I am looking for a good colored pencil online class, lessons which I can download and have lifetime access. Any idea?


      • I’ve taken other Effy classes, and LifeBook, and lots of Tam Laporte classes…but for colored pencil…the only one I know of would be through Paivi…I have a few books and whatnot. though my teen has swiped them…most of the classes I have taken use colored pencils to accent, not for the whole piece. I’ve just been playing with them myself lately to find what works for me.

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