I love textiles and pattern and this illustration is inspired by some amazing Navajo blankets and rugs I saw in Utah a few years ago. Seeing the beautiful work -- some dating back nearly 200 years -- was one of the highlights of the whole trip. One of the patterns (top row, second from right) is inspired by a rug that I bought last year at an antique shop, which is without a doubt, one of my favorite things in my home. I've been working on this in bits and pieces over the last few days, and here are a few photographs I took while working on it.
First, I quickly sketched a few ideas and came up with the overall layout. Then I started drawing in the rugs and blankets with a black micron pen (size 05). I planned to go over some of the patterns later with watercolor, so I used a piece of hot pressed Arches watercolor paper, which is my favorite watercolor paper. I then colored in the black areas with a number 1 micron pen.
I then added in some light gray watercolor washes using mars black.
When I first planned it out, I wanted to add some red, but once I got to this point I debated stopping. I liked it with just the black and light gray washes. Why mess with it? But I eventually decided to go ahead and add in the red. I did scan it first to make sure I had a copy of it before the red was added, just in case.
I ended up liking it ok with the red, and I'm glad I used it as more of an accent than a dominant color. Looking back, maybe I should have stopped with the gray, but I'm ok with it.
This is my third drawing/painting for The West theme, so although I'm technically done with this week's challenge, I have one more watercolor I'd like to paint before moving on (spoiler alert: as shown above, it's a cow skull). We'll see if I have time before jumping into week three's theme.
Hope you are having a great weekend!