Tag Archives: Airbrush

The Versatile Artist

Not just a wildlife artist…

…this girl is a published wildlife¬†artist, a teacher, a writer, a proof reader, a marketeer…

OK so I’m in danger of sounding like a well-known knicker retailer ūüėȬ†, but I guess what I’m saying is that as an artist or anyone working for yourself you have to be versatile.

The Versatile Artist.

I am no longer simply a Wildlife Artist, I write teaching notes and workshop outlines¬†to make my job as a teacher of airbrush and pastel techniques a little easier. I design the workshop structures and create adverts to market them as well as coding the website that handles the bookings…not to mention doing the catering for the workshops.

…and if I’m luck I get to paint too

Versatile Artist - advert
Latest advert for the Artist magazine

This recent advert for The Artist magazine will feature regularly from the May issue, so I spent last weekend choosing which image to use and then deciding on the colour scheme as well as the content¬†and layout that best describes what I’m offering.

Don’t¬†get me wrong, I’m not moaning,¬†¬†just an observing the skills that you have to develop on your journey to success;¬†you have to be so multi-faceted. ¬†Good job I love doing it.

Anyway, at the end of last year I think I mentioned that I was writing an article for Airbrush magazine.  They are based in Germany, but publish an English speaking version too.  Just as well because sadly my cat probably speaks German better than me.

I got the messing with paint gene, not the language one lol

Lynx and Hawker- The Versatile Artist
Lynx and Hawker The Versatile Artist

So¬†I’m very excited right now because I just got the proof of the article sent to me and it will be published in the German version of the mag in March!

This cover gives you a little teaser, in German, but the English version should be available shortly afterwards.

This is quite a large step by step article that charts the progress of my Lynx and Hawker piece in airbrushed acrylics.  The article is choc full of tips and techniques for getting the colours and the textures just right, so if you want to see how I tackle wildlife with an airbrush you might like to pick up a copy.

I’ll post a link to where you can find a copy in a future¬†blog, so watch this space.

Creating a Step by Step article

Describing what you do step by step sometimes comes hard to an artist.  How many times have you sat down to start a piece and 7 hours later realised that just maybe the rest of the family may want dinner at some point?

So stopping and starting to write down just what you are doing to achieve a particular texture or effect can disturb the flow somewhat.

Get out the camera

I learned a long time ago to photograph my pieces as I go. ¬†It’s easier than¬†stopping to write and the images can be used for lots of things:

  • Marketing on social media
  • Creating teaching notes
  • Magazine articles
  • Adverts
  • Great memoir to accompany a commission

You don’t need anything too fancy¬†either if you plan to upload shots to the web – your phone will do nicely if you are going to publish images online.

For printed materials, then a bit more finesse is required.  The images need to be detailed enough for print quality.  Lucky for me I have a professional photographer in the shape of my lovely husband John. So the promise of a bakewell tart is all I need to secure some professional images lol.

There are times too when you need both hands on the drawing, so a second person is needed to take the shot.

Since I can’t show the Lynx and Hawer piece yet, I added a piece I did earlier of a beautiful kingfisher. Click the images to see a larger view.

A great set of images like this can then prompt you to explain some of the techniques as you review them later with a cup of coffee.

Anyway hope you enjoyed the ramblings of the versatile artist ūüėČ

See you soon

Jilly x



Barry’s Trike Panier Boxes

You might recall I’m working on the artwork for my 81 year old next door neighbour’s custom trike…

My current job is the artwork on the panier box lids. ¬†Armed with my updated skills from Marissa’s workshop, ¬†I completed the first box which was a wolf scene and have started on the second box – a mountain lion. ¬†The whole trike has a Native American Indian feel to it, which is why I chose these two animals.

Here’s the step by step. Enjoy!

Marissa Oosterlee wildlife art airbrush workshop

OK, so as I promised here’s how I got on at the Wildlife workshop delivered¬†by Marissa Oosterlee and hosted by Pete Millichamp at Airbrush and Paint in Great Yarmouth.

I had booked this workshop last year, Nov 2013 and had to wait until May 19th 2014. How excited was I when we finally arrived in May ūüôā

Although I was getting to grips with my airbrush, I had lots of questions and lots of areas where I was convince my technique could be better.

As a qualified trainer, I know the value of workshops like these.  Sometime even just the one little tip can make it all worthwhile and in this workshop I picked up so much..

Enough waffle – here’s the step by step…

Hope you enjoyed the step by step.  The image is not quite completed, I will eventually get around to adding the very last details with watercolour pencils and maybe darken a couple of areas in the background.

I need to finish the trike paniers that I’m working on first, so hopefully you will see those finished in the next update.

J x

Learning a new medium

So I was hooked on airbrushing after being given the chance to create some artwork on my next door neighbour’s trike.

The question was “was I doing it right?”

So off to see what I could find on the internet about airbrushing technique.

Airbrushtutor.comMy first port of call was Airbrushtutor.com. ¬†Mitch is as nutty as a fruit cake, but in the nicest possible way ūüôā ¬†He has some great downloadable files on the site to help beginners practice getting used to the control of an airbrush.

I quickly¬†realised that my starter kit had done its job and I ought to move up to the next level of quality, so…

Infinity CR+

I moved up to a H & S Infinity CR+.  The difference was amazing, everything worked for a start and my artwork immediately improved.

Meanwhile back at the trike, Barry (neighbour) asked me to do the artwork on the real fuel tank at the back of the trike.

For all of the work including this next part I have been using Createx water based auto paint.

Take a look at the next gallery to see how the real fuel tank turned out.

Hope you enjoyed that.

See you soon with the output from My Marissa Oosterlee workshop.

J x


Updates, updates

It’s a full time job this, updating software, updating the way this blog looks on a mobile device, updating what I’m up to….
…and I’m not exactly the best at doing my updates on this blog ūüôĀ
I’d rather be painting…..

So for years my first love has been pastels and graphite, but now I’ve found a new love – my airbrush!

I have used a cheapy old airbrush for airbrushing sugar flowers (of all things), but always fancied learning to use one for fine art.

sugar flowers














Funny how opportunities arise

It is strange how these things happen, but I’ve always wanted to do some custom work on a bike or car, but never had the bike or the car to do it on. ¬†One day just before Christmas I was taking some artwork an exhibition and my neighbour started chatting about his custom trike that he was building. ¬†(Not that it matters, but Barry, my neighbour, is 81 and still tinkering around with and riding his trike!)

The upshot of the conversation was that Barry wanted a North American Indian themed bike and I could design and paint the artwork for the faux fuel tank!


Both of us were very happy with this first adventure into custom bike artwork. ¬†Barry was so please that he asked me to paint the real fuel tank that sits on the back of the trike. ¬†In the meantime I had booked my Marissa Oosterlee airbrush course to learn how to use my airbrush properly…!

I’ll tell you how it went in the next post.