"Old as the sky, old as the moon" My tribute to The last unicorn (includes progress photos!)

Hi everyone! How are you?

First, let me show you what you came to see:

the last unicorn tribute
Art: ©2015. Diana Vargas Sampieri (Dianita). All rights reserved.
The last unicorn is property of Peter S. Beagle.


"Old as the sky, old as the moon"

Tribute to The last unicorn
Acrylics on wood.
8in x 6in painted area approximately.
Dianita
2015

$125 usd + shipping.
Sales info: dianitaarts@gmail.com



She was supposed to be participating on Slushbox Gallery show "Nerdcore", but having my wisdom teeth removal surgery scheduled for April 30th distracted me and couldn't develop the idea properly on time. I tried to finish it, but those days after surgery I experienced painful muscle spasms and 2 sleepless and uncomfortable nights in a row. So, yay me.  Hugs to Amanda and all the team from Slushbox, they're amazing!  Go visit their site http://www.slushbox.com and check their current show pieces there!

I documented the process as well as I could, there were some steps I missed and I blame my meds for that!

Enjoy!


1.  The sketch.

the last unicorn tribute
Messy messy!


Just right after surgery, this dumb girl tried to woman up and start doing things right away. Good, you might think. WRONG!  But one thing came up well that day, and it was this final sketch. I had the idea lying around for weeks, but when your doctor sets the day for your first surgery ever you can't really focus on much =|

I didn't spend much time on details here, I knew what I wanted, I aimed for a cute, dynamic pose that could fit on a wood piece I got from Michaels (http://www.michaels.com). I love those wood rounds!

Anyway, my advice to you, sketch your ideas!  Basic sh!t, right?  well, I fail horribly on it. I always go "Leeeeeeroyyyy Jeeeenkeeeeeeeiiiins" when I'm excited and yes, as you imagine, I never finish those pieces because I get lost in the middle of the process. Sooo, plan as much as you can!


2. Sketch to wood.
And, no pic here! =D

But, it's not that hard!

You can check the process here, very very well explained by Jel Ena:

https://www.facebook.com/jel.ena.art/posts/466920026792615


In the video, you can actually see that she takes her sketch and adds a layer of graphite on the back of the sheet.  What I did was that I actually made a photocopy of my sketch, so I didn't have to tear my sketchbook apart, and on the back of the photocopy, I added the graphite with what I think it was a 2B Mars pencil.

If you have a more detailed sketch, you might see that the photocopy will not take many of the details as it should, here it wasn't my case as it was a messy one. But if you find yourself in that situation, you could add one more step:  If you have a lightbox, trace your drawing on a new paper, I would use a normal printer paper if the piece is small or other kind of cheap paper if you prefer. So you will be adding graphite to the back of cheap paper instead of your sketchbook!  (again, basic, but this is not my forte, I swear!)

And, if you don't have a lightbox, go the cheap way like me!  you might have windows at home, right? this will involve to tear your sketchbook page out, but you can carefully store it in a safe location with acid free plastic bags. I use to do this when I have to take this path.  Just tape it on the window, tape your new sheet on top of it and trace, trace, trace!  Of course, daylight hours are a must.

Or, you can go the cheapskate way (not that I've done it *cof cof*), if you have a small desk lamp and a glass table, those make good cheap lightboxes too =P   and if you're very veeery limited and only have a desk lamp... a little bird told me you can tape a sheet of paper to it and then your drawing on top, with the new sheet glued to it.  It's challenging, and sloooow...  but it works  *ehem*  yes, the bird told me so!

White lights are good and the best ones for this from my experience.


Of course, I forgot again to photograph the traced drawing.  But it's not that hard to imagine it, it was closer to the initial sketch =)

This is the transferred image with detailing added:

I wanted to add more and more details T^T  I loved the backgrounds in the movie!
After the sketch is ready, I added a couple layers of Golden Matte Medium. I love this one, it works as a clear sealant that won't add too much grain to the surface, but enough to handle oils or acrylics, or to mix with PearlEx pigments <3

I think I added 2 layers, well thinned down with a bit of water.  After the first layer dried, I added the 2nd, again, thinned down, but not watery!

You let this dry overnight and you're ready =)


3. Blocking background colors.


You can see the actual reference image on my phone.  And that spunky brush on the left! The oldest one I have!

Blocking the colors is something I've learned in this months.  Many, if not all artist I follow does this methodically. Usually, they block colors with acrylics to speed the drying process and then add the last layers with oils.  I will start doing this too, I just need to learn a bit of color theory! 

I happily understood quickly that the base color for the background had to be yellow. YAY!

By looking at the pic, I tried to come up with a practical color palette. This was, from Golden Acrylics Cadmium yellow, burnt sienna, yellow ochre, golden green, dioxazine purple, naples yellow, burnt umber, teal and titanium white.  From Grumbacher Academy I used Hooker's green and Thio Violet.  From Americana, I used Evergreen. Oh, and from Winsor&Newton Galeria, Pale Terracotta.

I took my Golden Acrylics Cadmium Yellow and made a quick wash on the whole background. I left the unicorn out of the yellow washes because I didn't want for the yellow to be too noticeable in the final stages. I'll talk about it later =) .   As you can see on my reference photo, the whole sky is yellow, the trees in the middle are more like ochre and the trees exactly behind the unicorn are like a dark gold/greenish color.  So I decided this was going to be my order.

You can see in the pic that I used a light wash of  Cadmium yellow for the sky. Then started to add a bit of a darker color on the 2nd layer with the yellow ochre mixed still with cadmium yellow.

It doesn't show here, but I tried to cover with 2 or 3 layers of each shade, to hide any imperfection but don't worry too much about it! Remember that this are only your first layers =)


4. Building up.  

YAY! Blurry pic!  just as you wanted to see!  * hides *
And yeah, I don't have a good pic of the next steps. This was the process.



* Kept adding more cadmium yellow to build a solid yellow sky on the background.

* Started to add light washes of color.  For the trees, washes of burnt sienna, sometimes mixed with a bit of yellow ochre to keep the yellow influence of the background. I also built the shadow/light areas of the trees in the right part of the painting.  Ochre + burnt sienna for the medium color areas, pure burnt sienna for the shadows.  The yellow bushes were a mix of cadmium yellow and ochre.  The green bushes I used cadmium yellow + golden green.  For the dark green bush I used phtalo green first from Grumbacher, but it's a bit blueish, so it didn't go well. So I added layers of Hooker's green from Grumbacher Academy.  This worked wonders for the round bush to the right.

* Started to build up texture on the trees using the darker tone I assigned for each one.  Burnt sienna for the bushes on the back and burnt umber for the ones closer to the front.  The tree immediately to the left of the unicorn had also some hints of golden green and ochre while working on it.

* The yellow bushes on the left were the ones I started detailing. It was easier to make this decision as the layers were ready for detailing already in that zone (burnt sienna for shadow, ochre/cadmium yell. for the medium color and pure cadmium yellow for the lighter.  I didn't add white as I wanted the unicorn to be the whiter element there.  So when starting to add the leaves, I used burnt sienna for the darker ones, ochre for the medium ones and naples yellow for the brighter ones on the top.

* For the ground, it was an easy choice. Ochre washes until the surface was evenly covered. Then cadmium yellow for the rounds.

This was how it looked after doing all I mentioned above:

Still in the ugly phase, but something it's certain. A few layers after, it always get better, I promise!


5. The Unicorn and adding more detail.

Again, looks like a magic step here =o


Patience! Building layers takes patience, it's worth it!


I took this photo after doing just a bit of work. Looks like a lot, but I discovered that it's just matter of following steps when it's the time, not rushing anything and enjoying the process.

What I did to reach this stage was:

* Trees in the right: Made sure that the base shape was well defined and lighter/medium/shadow zones were clearly covered (yellow/ochre/burnt sienna).  Then I started to add the leaves. The darker ones in the darker zones, the medium colored ones in the medium shade zone and the lighter ones on the edges where the strong yellow light hits. I played with naples yellow and cadmium yellow on this, no white so far! I also added a different tree with some flowers hanging, I liked that detail on the background of my reference pic and wanted to add it. Same happened here, Darker green in the basic shape, lighter green for the leaves.

*Bush with heart leaves: This was actually a challenge. This one had a green that I could only achieve with ochre + golden green, and golden green is a very translucent color, so it took a while until I got that shape covered. I decided to add Hooker's green for the hearts, but it wasn't offering lots of covering neither, so I used it as base and then added a layer of the Americana Evergreen, wich had enough opacity to cover the areas without messing too much with other colors around.

*Round green bush. Again, Hooker's green for the shape, and for the spikes I mixed golden green with ochre and applied with a small brush.

*Small brown bushes. I painted first the darker shades with burnt umber, then added ochre lines and then white + cad. yellow for the lighter lines.

*Plants in the front. All this lines were made with Hooker's green and a bit of golden green for lighter areas.

*The Unicorn.  Again, you can see I was only covering with a flat layer of medium tone colors.  I used Thio Violet from Grumbacher Academy + Dioxazine Purple from Golden for the outlines. Thio Violet is a warmer shade, but I didn't want to add any brown to it, as I wanted the unicorn to look out of place, but in place... I wanted her to look like a mythic creature not only for the horn on her forehead.  So Dioxazine for the darker areas and thio violet for the medium areas of her hair.  For the body I used washes of pale terracotta, a bit of white on the mix and thio violet washes for the shades. Try to build up your shapes in this stage, as in following stages you will only bringing up the lights without much hassle =D


6. The stage without pics, damn wisdom teeth extraction!

Badaboom! Magic!


Yes, I'm sorry, I spent May 4th to May 6th with growing pain on my extraction areas and couldn't sleep much. I tried to work bit by bit on this painting but was sporadic and didn't document it =(

This was the 99% finished piece.

Having explained part of the process above, you can now see how the layers were buil:

* Unicorn's body shades:  Were a mixture of thio violet, and yes, I didn't wanted to add browns, BUT, there's the influence of a yellowish - brownish environment, so some of that warmth had to be added to her, so I used very thin washes of burnt sienna on her belly, her front legs, the shadows that her hair make on her fur and around her eyes to shape them a bit more.

* Unicorn hair.  We had previously build our hair shapes with thio violet and dioxazine purple. it was just matter of adding lighter details on her hair to add light and a bit of movement. I used my tiniest brush and thin layers of titanium white to paint this, just enjoy doing it just trying to remember that she has light coming from behind and also some light from the front. Play with the idea. I honesty didn't know what I was doing sometimes, but if you're afraid, go and check books, photographs , etc. So you can have a better understanding of light and its behavior.  I know I'm no master, I have lots to learn, but if I don't finish something I will stay here sucking my finger for the rest of my life xD

And I knew I wanted a mythical cute unicorn, and this was it !  No light source was going to stop me! *cries*

* TIP:  When having your shapes stablished, don't rush!  It's tempting as you're near the end just to spit white and get over with, right?  Try something different instead, get you favorite thin brush, your white, some clean water and start with diluted white, like almost transparent and play with the fur, thin lines of diluted white on the lighter parts of your shape, next, you will dilute a bit less, so the white lines will be more visible, and so on.  Also, you will see that the shape will be forming in front of your eyes, you will also notice that the whiter areas will be smaller as you keep working.  I also added some whiter areas to show texture on her belly and back legs.  Play with your brush, you'll discover new ways to achieve the look you want for your painting.

* This was the layer where I most used white. you can see that there's no white all over, I tried to leave this for the lightest areas of this painting: The unicorn, some leaves, the flowers in front, and the flowers in the back as well as the outer line of the trees in the back.  If you use too much white, you will limit yourself a lot with the rest of the colors! It's a very bad habit of mine, so I want this to change already!

* Added the lines of the sun just for fun, as well as the butterflies, I thought it needed a bit of movement and interaction with other critters. And they serve as well as a guide for your eyes to focus on her head, I hope so!

* As I was in the last details, I adde a bit of washed down Teal for some areas to add some volume and just a bit of very veeery watered down burnt siena on the hooves.  I added some burnt sienna to build the shadow on the ground. Fixed the texture of the ground with more yellow and some white for the lighter areas.

* Finished with the flowers and the plants in front.

And, I think that's all!

Ohh  if you wonder about her eyes!  I used dioxazine purple as the darker color, and then a mix of thio violet, yellow ochre and cad. yellow for the iris and then the white spot and some little spots with a bit of watered down white.


7. Sealing -> the end!
I added a couple layers of Jo Sonja's gloss varnish with a soft brush. Let it dry and well, show it to your loved ones =D



My last thoughts.
I acknowledge I need to learn a lot about painting. Some color theory won't hurt me!  But if something I've learned in this years is that, no matter how bad you think you worked on a piece. In a couple months later, you will be proud of what you did.  Don't stop trying, don't stop educating yourself.  We all have to keep learning in order to be better!

I learned a lot with this piece, first of all, planning. And with this comes the "take it slowly".  If you see that after 3 layers you feel you have a big ugly mess, it's how it's supposed to look at that stage. That "mess" will be the strong base in where you're building your whole painting. Spend the necessary time on this and you'll be spending less time fixing stuff in the end.

Last, but not least.  Don't over do it!  I've learned this as the years have passed. It's difficult because you might want to add a lot, but if you're prone to do this, leave your brush, take a deep breath and step away from it. If tomorrow you still want to add that detail, then add it. If not, then proceed to the next area you need to work with.  Adding details while working on the blocking of the shapes will make you lose perspective about the whole scene. I believe you need to add colors at the same time you try to understand how it affects the rest of your image. It might not show on this one painting, but hopefully in the future it will, but as a learning piece, I'm very very proud!

Why? you might ask.

Because I followed steps. Which is difficult when having focus issues =o  And I use to get very sad in the "ugly phase".  So actually finishing it was quite an achievement!


So, this is it.  I hope you find this helpful in your practice.  This is more my experience than a tutorial, but I wanted to share it with you in case that you might want a different perspective and to see that we all go through doubts while working on something!

Thanks a lot for watching and remember, if you have questions about materials I used, or about a step on the process, let me know through the comments!

You can also check my FB https://www.facebook.com/dianitaart and send me a message there =)


Also, please, don't use my images without permission!


Have a wonderful weekend!

Dianita
www.artbydianita.com
dianitaarts@gmail.com

The Last Unicorn screening and meeting Mr. Peter S. Beagle

Mr. Peter S. Beagle was recently at a screening on “The Last Unicorn” at the Alamo Drafthouse in Richardson, Tx, well, not that recently now I guess o.O  It was in April... 
Aanyway.
Watching the movie for the first time in more than 29 years and in the big screen with Mr. Vic who had never seen it before, was like going back to that night, when I was watching it on the TV. I  honestly believe it’s one of my first memories as a child, so I guess that’s why I felt like going back for a few minutes to that time when everything was fine. And yes, I cried a lot, but had to run to snag a good place in line to meet Mr. Beagle and sign a vintage copy of the book for one of my best friends  and a signed print for me =)  
The line had some surprises, amazing cosplayers and an incredible puppet maker (I think!). Here are some pics of it =) )

Amazing Red Bull cosplay *.*
Gorgeous Amalthea Cosplay <3  


Puppeteer <3

Run Unicorn!!!! Run!!!

Mr. Beagle telling me stories ^-^  (srsly, ppl almost kill me)

Gorgeous Vintage edition now Signed!

Poster near the entrance <3

I'm truly sorry with all the people in line, but I swear, Mr. Beagle didn't want to stop his story! If you want to know, he was telling me about how he loves Mexico and he has many friends from there and family. I'm not sure if that's true, but well, he's a great storyteller! As you can see, when hubby took our pic, he was still talking and talking and talking xD  He's a very very funny guy, I'm glad fans everywhere are making his presence count!

Kuddos to the lady next to me at the cinema too, she was like the biggest fan in that place, she knew all that was to know about The last unicorn and all other of his stories. She jumped, laughed, she was super excited and she even noticed the vintage edition I had in my hands, she even had the VHS! I'm always impressed how I always get to be near awesome people who are passionate about what they like. Hugs to you, sweet lady! And for the lady that was next to her, drawing prior the screening, you go girl!!!  As far as I could peek, your drawing was beautiful! =D

And that's it for this post <3 I was very inspired by this incredible couple hours we spent there, even if the damned highway was closed in both directions when we were on our way.  Because, it's me, right?  Luckily we made it on time!

Thanks to hubby for getting the tickets to this screening, I know they make the tour often, but 29 years ago I never imagined I was going to meet, hug and listen stories directly from the author of this fascinating story!

I got some inspiration that day,
next post will be about that <3

Dianita
www.artbydianita.com
dianitaarts@gmail.com


Have you ever felt like you're able to relax a bit? It's weird what a little piece of art can show you.

Hi hi, how are you all?

I usually feel weird when I manage to draw a relaxed looking image (at least for me), after so many years under the blue and not knowing why, I finally feel fine.

This is a drawing I made last year, it was meant to be as part of Create & Inspire 30 days of art challenge (I just managed to do the first week), but it really jumps to me today... why?  because after almost a decade, I finally feel good and healthy!  Today hubby told me at 6:40 am (an hour earlier than our regular waking up time) that I looked fresher than practically every day. Apparently my thyroid med is doing its work slowly but steady and so weird!  I feel full of energy that is hard to go to sleep at night, and less hungry and almost no heavy head!

For me it's a miracle!

And I finally feel relaxed, happy, impressed on how much time I went without knowing I had this issue.  I can't thank enough to all my friends who were with me when I didn't know what was happening to me and when the stress broke me completely. Some chose to walk along the way with me, and with other friends, we decided to go separate ways. And it's always been ok, people change and you do not have to always adapt if you don't feel like to. I'm proud of those decisions, because we're doing well, sometimes you need to move forward, even if it's in a different direction.

I know this is not a pro-drawing, I need to focus more on technique and the wow factor. But today I finally feel related to her, which I usually can't do with my art. Sometimes you let it be, you let your hand and brain try to do the job of translating your feelings into pencil and paper, but I've never faced a moment where I understood the reason to be of a work you made.

woman horse skeleton art
Original available at http://artbydianita.storenvy.com/products/12539079-were-finally-safe-original-pencil-drawing

"We're finally safe"
Pencil on mixed media paper (Canson, acid free)
7"x10"
2014

She was a big challenge, her face is a refined version of all the faces I've made. I used Staedtler blue pencils in 2B, 4B, 6B and 0.3mm Alvin Draft/matic.

Size is a bit weird, since I honestly didn't look at the measurements of the paper when working on her (and many following drawings). But a custom made mat would do the work when framing <3

If you like her, the link to her sale page is above as caption of the image. Or if you prefer a direct sale, you can write me to dianitaarts@gmail.com

 Prints are available at Society6: http://society6.com/product/we-are-finally-safe_print#1=45

I hope you like her, I personally feel proud and humble. I'm satisfied with her, but I acknowledge my style needs lots of work! =)

I hope you have a wonderful day, thank you so much for watching and for your support!

Dianita
dianitaarts@gmail.com

When you have cute pony toys and you turn them into zombies.

Crazy Lily

Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)






"They were playing hide and seek in the graveyard.
Yes. 
They were.
Who were they? – She asks herself every time when the hunger goes away.
There were laughs, yes, lots of laughs. Yet, she never moved from this gravestone… why? Why was everybody laughing?
Oh yes!
“I was counting!” – she smiled.
“1 … 2 …3 … “ – she knew she was counting, although her voice sounded so weird… “… 10… 11… 12…” there was no sound but her voice in the graveyard. “98… 98… 100!”
“Ready or not, here I come! “ she started walking, searching for her laughing friends, until the chain stopped her… Again.
At the distance, she saw curious faces. She could hear them laughing. She could smell their fear or excitement. Excitement was the best. 
She stopped pursuing her invisible friends and returned to the gravestone lying on the rocks, closing her eyes, lowering her muzzle to the ground. It never takes too much time until she can feel something touching her. One poke… 2 pokes… then she feels something pushing her. “ …3 …4… 5…”
And then laughs. 
“It’s so stupid! Dumb zombie! Hahahaha Look, look!” 
“Stop it! “ said another voice with fear “come on, let’s go! We shouldn’t be here!” 
“How boring, she’s sleeping, c’mon Crazy Lily, come and get us!!! Hahaha” 
The little pony was strongly poking her back, she didn’t feel pain, not even when her skin was breaking by the touch of the little pony hoof. 
And then… 
“100” 
Laughs always turn into screams. Yes, always. 
That day, it was the same. They were playing hide and seek, she was counting while they ran to hide. They all were laughing. And then she heard the screams. 
Yes, she remembers. 
Her own screams. 
And then, silence. 
She looked at the forest around her, nobody was around. The screams and cries stopped, warm blood ran through her mouth. 
“I was counting, they were laughing… yes”
“Who were they?"".
Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)

Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)

Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)

Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)

Image property of Dianita (do not use without permission)


Description

"Crazy Lily" is a custom pony made by me, Dianita. I used a g3 pony as a base and epoxy sculpt, acrylic paints, glossy sealant and swarovski crystals and a chain for her details. Her base is also designed and built by me using a wood plaque, acrylic paints, moss from a crafts store, glossy sealant, a spare block from what appears to be our new kitchen previous remodeling and lots of strong glue to keep it all together <3

As you can see, she was designed and made with lots of love and care, yes, lots of love, even if you don't believe it =)

My Lil' Zombies are an ongoing series of custom My little ponies that I started a few years ago and have become popular from time to time. They were mentioned in the most amazing feature from FearNET.com and have found loving homes in the most amazing families I could ever ask for in Germany and the USA.

I currently don't take commissions for custom ponies as they're very personal projects and I like to keep this hobby as something personal and fun. So from time to time, listings like this will pop in my store so it's your better chance to own one original and special design that will not be recreated in the future.

If you decide to give her a home, you agree that this is a display-only piece. It's not meant for kids to play or even to touch. It doesn't have sharp edges, but pieces can break and cut skin or be swallowed. So please, do not allow your kids to play with this pony. Of course, this means that if it falls to the ground, it might break, as any delicate piece. I will not be held responsible if you break it.

Shipping will be made in the most careful possible way to make sure your pony will be delivered safely. The inside will not look fancy, but it's for your pony's good, trust me.

This said, inside the USA I ship my items through Priority Mail . For international destinations, please contact me with your info to give you a more exact quote, I'm giving the most accurate prices I can offer right now for the most usual destinations.

However, in case that you choose not to buy insurance or registered mail for your package, I can't be held responsible for any kind of problem during the shipping process.

You can see more of my works onhttp://www.artbydianita.com and follow my future projects (art and crafts, including custom toys) athttp://www.facebook.com/dianitaart.

RESIDENTS OF TEXAS.
The Local Sales and Use Tax (8.25%) will be added for items purchased by residents of the state of Texas.

COPYRIGHT: All artwork by Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri) are copyrighted material and may not be reproduced in any manner on the internet, nor paper or any other material or means of reproduction without the express written and signed permission by the artist Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri), this includes all reproductions and originals. All rights are retained by the artist Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri).

Choco chip kitties overload! Art for "Candy Coated Dreams Show"





"With choco chip kitties on top please"
Watercolor, acrylics and pigments on watercolor paper (canson, 140 lb)
8x10 inches  (framed)
2015

Dianita



This was a painting I made for this show:



It will be on the exhibition from March 7th to May 2nd.  And includes art from amazing artist, one of them being one of my best friends Tammy Street ( Tamisery) !  with her cute piece "Cotton Candy & Little Lad Gumdrop" that sold during the opening night! (Grats girl!!)


(image taken from Tamisery's FB page  )

I'm patiently waiting to see more pics from the opening night to share them here too.  There were many many great artists participating:



Jennifer D. Basing
Stefanie Merullo
Erika Taguchi
Jellykoe
Alisha Koyanis
Brandy Rumiez (Promo image)
MsBittyKnacks
Sugar Fueled
Natasha Westcoat
Spazzy Wonder
Brenda Burton
Jared Konopitski
Irma Galindo
Raúl Guerra 
Mizna Wada
Mayte Bringas
Stitch of Whimsy
Chris Rude
Matt Vazquez
JR Linton
McGreens
Acrylicana
Amanda Pandacakes
Julie Filipenko
Squid Vichuss
Andy Cordero
Carolina Lebar


So, you can imagine that I feel very humble to be participating with many known artists =)  I wish I could be there in person to see her around so many pretty arts and crafts!

Thank you to the staff at Slushbox Gallery for their warm welcome to their show and all their hard work to make this and all their shows a success.

More updates coming soon!

Thank you for reading!

Dianita

COPYRIGHT: All artwork by Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri) are copyrighted material and may not be reproduced in any manner on the internet, nor paper or any other material or means of reproduction without the express written and signed permission by the artist Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri), this includes all reproductions and originals. All rights are retained by the artist Dianita (Diana Vargas Sampieri).

New year, new life.

Good afternoon everyone!

As you can see, I got lost during this months. I just moved out of my country and started finally my marriage life with my amazing hubby after 3 years married and waiting for immigration to process my case.


All is set, I'm at my new home and already overwhelmed at the opportunities I can reach! I finally set up my artist room, worked on a piece for Slushbox Gallery   for their "Candy Coated Dreams" show opening tomorrow (March 7th, 2015)  and really excited as I'm joining the amazing Ink & Pistons artists, one of my best friends Tamisery  and lots of incredible artists like Raul Guerra, Acrylicana, Jen D. Basing, Sugar Fueled, Julie Filipenco, Squidvishuss,Carolina Lebar, Mizna Wada, Jared Konopitski, Sara Leigh, and I'm sure some more !  I can't wait to see the pieces all together in the show, I wish I could go!

So, along with this busy start of the year, I hope to be updating this blog regularly. I'm joining Rebecca Guay's wonderful idea of promoting artist friends. So, I know I'm not famous, but I hope this space can be used for my friends to know each other's talents and we can be a big machine in order to let the world know amazing undervalued artists exist =)

That, and hubby is bugging me with making my youtube channel... That one is still a maybe, I don't like to talk or be on camera, but we'll see.  I need a camera with video recording and a tripod. Let's see if business picks up and I can overcome my fears of being recorded hahaha


Ok, this is just a text update, I will be writing here much more, so I hope this helps me to stay active and keep pursuing my goals (and use my time on something better while I recover from a shoulder injury xD)

Thanks for reading and for your visit.
All my love to you all!
Dianita

"She lights her own path" Newest drawing

Hello, how's everyone doing?

It has taken me a bit of time for updating this blog, mostly because of my lack of pictures. I've forgotten to take pics of the progress on my latest drawings =|  I'm so sorry about that!

Here's the last one I made past month. I tried (not hard enough) to participate in a challenge of 30 days of creativity. It ate me in the 8th =(   It was all my doing, because I couldn't stand leaving this drawings without finishing! So, because of that, I just had 8 finished ones, instead of 30.

So, this is the last one I created, I will post 1 each day, so you can have the chance to check them  =)



"She lights her own path"
Pencil on Canson Mixed Media paper.
7" x 10"
2014


Here's a little close up on her face, the drawing itself is small so there's not much detail, but I must admit I really had a great time drawing her face =)



I used Staedtler Mars Lumograph pencils 2H, 4H, 2B, 4B, 6B.  Blackwing Palomino and Alvin Draft/matic 0.3mm with 2B leads.

I hope you like her =)
Thanks a lot for stopping by!
Have a wonderful day!

Dianita
Website   Facebook     Twitter

"The Dragon's Keeper" a new oil painting.




"The Dragon's Keeper"  started as a very very ambitious idea for me. I was pretty scared because I wanted to add elements I was not comfortable with and take a chance on a different composition.  Of course, i'm used to single character portraits and no backgrounds, so it was a big and scary picture for me!

The sketch is something I'm honestly going to frame.  I loved it so much!   You can check the sketch, I had it stored in a box because we moved to a house a couple months ago.



When facing the moment where I had to start transferring it to the canvas panel, I was seriously thinking on just going full pencil shading on it, I have a big fear of oil painting because I've faced lots of disasters when working on them.  It might have to do with the fact that I lose the pencil marks under the layers of oil paint or the fact that I get too excited and start this "tunnel-vision" stage where I work work work and in the end I repent!  It happened like 3 times this with this pair!

I'm too ashamed to post the big mistakes, after the first attempt, I even changed her face. I liked the expression, but her head came up too big =(  The next time I did have something really interesting, but oh yeah!  I over worked it and it turned to be a very very awful attempt to make a human face.



(I can't believe I didn't continue with this option...  it was beauuutiful and I messed it up and couldn't get her to look like it again T.T)





And, after some days of crying, anxiety and what-not , i decided that this was going to be the last attempt before stopping for a longer time to take a break from her.

During all this process, one of my best friends and one of the artists I incredibly admire, Tamisery  , gave me some pointers and helped me to develop a bit more the idea. As well as revisions with colors, composition and lots of details.  I hope i can paint like her someday T.T  She and her husband are the most amazing and talented people and they always find the time to help me with my art.

And also, my husband, he was the one who gave me the hugs I needed when frustration was overwhelming me.  He knows that I want to be good, but I somehow have troubles understanding theory and I'm so tired of making mistakes that not doing a nice painting or piece really really shakes me completely. He's the one that helped me with a more commercial-type-of-client perspective.    Of course, I know this is not his cup of tea, but he made his best and helped me a lot along the way with the colors and situation.

Well, after almost losing my mind with this, I have to admit that I learned LOTS !!!

- I used a pattern style of transfer from sketch to board.  I copied the sketch on printer paper and started cutting each shape as a pattern and copied it on the board.  This was helpful as I always lose proportion when doing this without any help.


- I learned bits more of human anatomy.  And it is the first actual foot I ever paint that looks acceptable! (hey! I must celebrate small victories, right?)

- I painted a Dragon!!!  (Hubby's favorite part)


- I learned a lot of suggesting textures on oil painting.  The scales were fun to do!

- From the beginning to the end, I kept her story the same. She's not afraid of the dragon, as she's the one who's protecting him.

- It actually has a story! =D   





"The Dragon's Keeper"
Oils on Canvas Panel
11"x14"
2014

Purchase info directly with dianitaarts@gmail.com



After reading and listening to 2 podcasts during my daily walks, I really felt more comfortable taking chances.

This podcasts are:

Create & Inspire  by  Aunia Kahn


Art Marketing Action  by Alyson B. Stanfield  (sadly, it's not updated anymore, but the podcasts that remain are sooo good!)

I hope you enjoy this blog entry, please, let me know in the comments if you have any question, or suggestion. Please, be polite! I know I'm always learning new techniques!
Have a wonderful week!


Thanks for watching!


Dianita


WIP Photos of latest painting - Fotos del proceso de mi última pintura

ENGLISH: Back in December, a friend of mine asked me for a painting of a horse running in the beach. She liked the painting I was making back then, but she wanted something bigger and with sunset colors. 

I began searching for references and inspiration and started working on it. I lost some pics of the process, from the start to mid-point, but I'm sharing here some of the detailing shots.


ESPAÑOL: En diciembre, una amiga mía me preguntó si podía hacerle una pintura de un caballo corriendo en la playa. A ella le había gustado una pintura que estaba haciendo en esos días, pero quería algo más grande y con colores del atardecer.

Inicié buscando referencias e inspiraciones para comenzar a trabajar en la imagen. No encuentro más fotos del proceso, especialmente desde el inicio hasta la mitad =(, pero les comparto unas fotos del proceso de detallado.



Colors blocked/ Colores bloqueados:

 

Adding some shine to the coat:


By this point, I asked my friend Tamisery for her opinion on this painting so far, and she pointed out some technical issues that I tried to fix in the best way I could  (like the horizon line that has to go a bit up than where I did it =|)  and that I had to make a choice with the perspective of the horse)

With her advice, I moved forward and then it became again something a bit more logical for me. 
En este punto, le pedí su opinión a mi amiga Tamisery , ella me comentó que veía algunos problemillas técnicos que traté de corregir de la mejor manera posible (por ejemplo: la linea del horizonte, que debía ir un poco más arriba de donde inicialmente estaba =|  y que debía tomar una decisión sobre la perspectiva del caballo)

Con su consejo, pude avanzar con mejor paso porque, al fin, la imagen tomó un poco más de sentido para mí.



 More detail on coat (water line already placed above of original line)/
Más detalle en el pelaje ( la línea del agua ya corregida)


A bit shadowy  =(  I use to paint at nights when I'm at my parent's house to avoid noise or the eventual favor that steals most of the day.

Esta foto salió un poco oscura =(  Normalmente pinto en las noches mientras estoy en casa de mis papás, para evitar ruido y el eventual favor que hay que hacer que consume todo el día =|


My first attempt with water splashes, first time working on something like this, I was absolutely terrified

Mi primer intento con las salpicaduras en el agua, es la primera vez que hago algo así, estaba aterrada


And, after thinking about it, I did some more work to it, because it wasn't quite convincing for me yet.  I searched for more reference images and then, to hold my breath and make the changes

Y, luego de pensarlo un rato, seguí trabajando en esa zona, porque aún no me convencía. Busqué más imágenes de referencia y así, casi casi conteniendo la respiración, me puse a hacer las correcciones


 



 And well, this is the finished image before taking it out for a more formal photo.  I was quite happy with the water, it added the movement I wanted to portray =)

Esta es la imagen terminada, antes de llevarla para afuera para una foto más formal. Estoy bastante satisfecha con el agua, le añadió un poco más del movimiento que quería agregarle =)




This is the finished image, photo taken with my lovely camera. It was a bit of a cloudy day, but it showed lovely.

Esta es la imagen final, fotografía tomada con mi adorada cámara.  Estaba un poco nublado, pero me gustó mucho como salió.



The image is 90cm x 70 cm, Oil on Canvas.  Not for sale.

La imagen es de 90cm x 70cm, Oleo sobre tela. No está a la venta


Thanks for watching!
Gracias por su visita!

Year of the Horse... Very fitting! 2 new paintings!


I just finished 2 paintings for a friend, who, in exchange for them, got me in to a wonderful workshop from David Alonso, owner of "Brio Natural", a technique that reminds me to Pat Parelli's method of Natural HorseManShip  <3

It was an amazing experience, and well, I paid it with art. So I couldn't be happier !

I'm making 5 paintings for him. 3 of them are delayed ones I promised him a long time ago and 1 new one that was in progress when we agreed on it and an original ACEO card.

The first one I want to show is this:

"In the beach"
Oil on Canvas
50cm x 40cm
2014

It's my FIRST painting completely based on a photograph, I'm quite proud of it. I still need to learn more of landscapes, but to be the first, I think I nailed it!


And my 2nd one

 
"Mezcalero"
Oil on Wood
Around 33cm diameter.
2014


Based on a photo I took of one of my friend's horses.
I've received lots of visits to this photo on FB, almost 490 in 2 days! It's a big achievement for me =)

I'm so happy I'm finally being able to close cycles on pending stuff.

Well, that's it for today.

Happy New Year and lots of love and health and prosperity for this new year that just started.
Thanks for watching!

Horse #2 Aceo Process





Hi hi, how are you all doing?
This might be my first time posting the process pics of a piece I've made, this isn't by all means a "This is how you do it" kind of tutorial. I'm still learning lots of tips and ticks for doing what I love to do, so I really hope you enjoy the pics =)

This is the finished piece:


It's one of my recent ACEOs (Art in 2.5" x 3.5" surfaces), I started creating this to save some money for a Natural HorseManShip workshop that will take place on Dec 13-14 on the riding club I attend. I was very lucky, because I made a trade with a friend, so I'll be attending this workshop in exchange of art (Isn't it sweet??) , so this ACEOs will still be created and will be available for sale  =)

For this ACEOs, here's what I'm using:

2.5" x 3.5" (handcut) Cold Press Watercolor Paper (140lb)
Grumbacher Academy Acrylics (Yellow Ochre, Thalo Blue, Mars Black, Cadmium Yellow, Hooker's Green)
GOLDEN Artist Color (Burnt Sienna, Titanium White, Naples Yellow Hue, Burn Umber)
Prismacolor Premier Pencils (White, Black)
Prismacolor Scholar (White)


And I'm using this stunning Raphael Macek's Photograph as inspiration



So, I start by doing the pencil work on the tiny card.  I decided to photograph the process after this, so no pics, sorry =)

Then, I check light and dark areas and start applying a very diluted layer of burnt umber. (Main shadow areas are the eyes and nostrils)


That pencil is my ACEO holder !  It's easier to handle it without messing with the wet paint =)
I keep applying light washes of burnt umber to start defining some areas and trying to get even soft shadows in place.



 More Shadow/Light defining


I start playing with new light washes and quickly taking them off with a Qtip, this gives me a lovely textured effect on the face and neck.


I got a bit worried this guy is looking too flat, so I started playing with Thalo Blue to add depth to the darker spots (eyes, nostrils and some shadows on hair and ears) And I start working a bit on bringing the muzzle out.


 I keep working with mixture of thalo blue and burnt umber, with some hints of burnt sienna. As well as some white to start defining light areas.


 I kinda got bored and started a blue wash on the bg xD  More tiny texture areas added


You'll get bored with the almost non-sense serie of photos without any big change on it.  What was happening was a bit more of shadow and texture definition.



There's some point in the process where I still feel some depth missing. So I started adding some black washes to the darkest areas and start adding very very light washes on areas with texture or where other color should be predominant.



 Working on the mane, again, very light washes of white or burnt umber, depending on the areas.
I also use White and Black Prismacolor Premier pencils to define a bit more the hair area.  The White Prismacolor Scholar pencil I use for softening a bit the lighter areas on the neck. This pencils are harder than the premier, so I love to use them for blending.


More defined hair:


Ok, here's a big change. 
I was going for a plain background, but Iwasn't still happy with the texture of the horse. The white horses I draw/paint tend to show more texture, and the white-ish background was not helping me with it. So to my eyes, it looked somewhat unfinished, so, on a crazy Leap of Faith, I decided to add a blurry background. Inspired on another photo I was looking at for color reference (original photo is monochromatic). 

So, here it is with a background:


 I worked on the blurry bushes, and lost hair detail. So, I worked on the hair again. I feel safe because I really love how this change on the background helped this horse to pop out a bit more.


And here it is, as you can see, I added a biiit of green on the darker area on the top right corner. This was to help with composition.



As you can see, I don't do much different from other Acrylic artists. I'm not a hyper realism artist, but I like to try some realism from time to time, mostly with horses. They're not perfect, but they're mine... And as long as they don't look like dogs (long story involving my mother), I'm very happy with them hahaha  

Horse ACEO#2 is currently for sale at:  http://artbydianita.storenvy.com/products/12539181-horse-aceo-2


This is the first ACEO I made, and it's currently on hold.



I hope you enjoy this little process, if you have any question, please let me know =)

Thank you for watching!

Dianita ^^
www.artbydianita.com
My Facebook page

2 small paintings in progress









I'm working on 2 small paintings, aiming to use all my available material while I'm still at my parents house, I think I'll be moving to the USA next year, so I want to make sure I don't leave here anything unused that will just cause a big mess (in case that mom wants to use the room for rent or just if she wants to enter and clean it )

I'm overcoming lots of fears with this works, they look so simple, but the progress has been hard and I try not to go down everytime I know I need a break from them. But I like them, because of what they're teaching to me, like patience, planning and that "wtf? I'm changing this because I want it to be different!" feeling.  And i feel free.

The one at the right started with a different, more childlish kind of face, I elongated it and worked with a more soft-kinda realistic touch. I'm getting inspired by Soey Milk 's paintings,  she's my biggest inspiration as for today, I know I hugely feel inspired by women like Audrey Kawasaki, Karla Ortiz, Jel Ena, Stella Im Hultberg, Alice Savage and a huge list of incredible artists I follow. Including my best friends Tamisery , Piquipauparro , Bee-chan  who inspire me, not only with their art, but with their lives as well.
I would love to be half as incredible as they all are, and all the amazing artists I follow on all the social networks I'm in.

I'm working and redesigning my life to finally be where I'd love to be. It's been a long process, and I was even awarded with the most incredible husband and lots of friends, I can say that all I went through was worth it.  So, on to keep working =)

Thanks for reading (if you're not just a spam reference site =|)

Dianita

Facebook
Etsy

Pony Drawing for JujuB.


Color Pencil and white acrylic on Strattmore Recycled paper 400 series, 80lb.
8x10"
2013


Meet JuJu, she's one pony persona of my dear friend and client Crystal, owner of Studio JujuB. Her design is very lovely and I'm always happy when I get some freedom to choose elements and create something special.  She asked me to make JuJu my style, but honestly, it's been a while since I drew my last pony ! So this might be my current style, but the important thing is that she loves it and that makes me a happy artist too =)

She's a good white magic voodoo princess and is always in the company of her little black doll. Last time I drew her, was with striped stockings, but for this design, I aimed to keep the attention to the top part, so it can be used as cover image for FB, as requested by the commissioner. This way I could also work on some furry unicorn hooves.

So, this work is finished and I'm on to the next one.

If interested on a drawing like this, let me know.  I can't ship anything starting the last days of November, because the risk of the item to be lost or delayed due Xmas rush is high.  Although, you can wait til mid-January for me to ship it, or just go with the Hi-Res scan (300dpi) and save on shipping.

Thank you 
Have a wonderful day
Dianita


Facebook

Current Painting



This is the current stage of a big painting I'm making. I'm finally happy with her features and the horses, but as I changed it a bit, compared to the original sketch, I'm sorting out options to unify her hair and the horses coming out of it.  Colors are locked, just this tiny details missing and then to finish it.  I wish I had ArtResin to seal it up, I would love to see it with that beautiful glow.

I hope I can find her a home, I would't want to take her with me to the USA next year, it is bigger than my usual works =|

Thank you for reading! Have a great start of the week!



********** Español************



Esta es la etapa actual en que se encuentra la pintura que estoy haciendo. Finalmente estoy feliz con su look y con los caballos, pero como cambié el diseño final a como estaba en el boceto a lápiz, aún necesito estudiar opciones para unificar la sección donde los caballos emergen de su cabello. Los colores ya están bloqueados, solo faltan un par de detalles y listo, a darle los últimos toques y terminarla. Ojala tuviera a mi alcance ArtResin para usar como sellador, me encantaría ver esta pintura brillante con esa capa de resina.



Espero que pueda encontrarle hogar, no me gustaría tener que llevarla a Estados Unidos el próximo año, es más grande que mis trabajos usuales.



Gracias por leer mi blog, que tengan un muy buen inicio de semana !



Dianita.

My Facebook Page

Daenerys



Today I learned that the Internet is Dark and full of terrors  hahaha
Just a personal experience on Reddit =)

Anyway, I'm learning to tell people that when I make a fanart, I just use the character and some details and just mix them to my likes. This image is an example, some people is disliking it because she should be bald, according to the book... well, I haven't reached that part in the books! >.< 

This is just the Targaryen girl with her signature dragons =)  that's it, don't look for anything else, you're not going to find it...

And her eyes does have a bit of purple! but the scanner is not picking it well, so, there ya go xD

As for the technical info, this lady was made with colored pencils on Strattmore Toned tan paper. Size 5,5" x 8,5".

The original is a gift for my husband, who likes it a lot and I'm proud if it ^^ 

Thank you for watching!


Custom ponies production stopped til further notice =(



 (Pony in progress, missing its gross factor because her blood won't shine without a gloss glaze T^T)

Today I went to my local Home Depot, with hopes to find a polyurethane water based glaze for some charms I'm making and of course, for my custom ponies. My surprise was that I just found oil-based glazes from Minwax, and that they're not going to carry more polyurethane glazes for wood any longer. This is a crazy situation and sadly, all my projects will be delayed til I find something good to work with.  Sculpey Gloss Glaze whas my favorite varnish, until it started to crack the painting. For some projects looks cute and it adds some elements of surprise. But in other projects, well, it's disappointing

So, I won't be working on the projects I expected to work before closing all sales during mid-November, in order to avoid Xmas rush and mail delaying. It happened to me once, sent a pony on the first week of December and it arrived til February. =|  And I was lucky it got there!

I will be working on ponies, but I will have to take them with me to the USA next time I go, hopefully now as a permanent resident.  I'm sad, because I have a couple projects that will be shipped to Europe that will cost 10 times more to send from USA than from Mexico =(  But quality goes first.

I'm in the search for this water based glaze, it must exist something !  I have some charms on hold and I don't want to deliver them with cracks!

So I guess that I will be focusing this couple months to my drawings and paintings more than my crafts T.T


Well, happy weekend to everybody... <3

D.

New painting for Sev Ven´s show "Love, Sex, Magic"


"Forbidden"
Acrylics and Oils on wood.
12" x 7" aprox.
August 2013

Available
For purchase info, contact gallerysevven@gmail.com . Ask for their payment plans ;)


My painting for Gallery Sev Ven's show "Love, Sex, Magic". Highly inspired by Charmaine Olivia's beautiful paintings and Soey Milk's paintings too.  =)

Remember that you can find me on FB too!  at Dianita's Art

An article I found by Adeline Halrvorson

Adeline Halrvorson is a lovely woman we met at the Scottsdale Festival of the Arts back in February this year. She's a very impressive artist that made me understand how far somebody can go with acrylic paints. She makes some wonderful horse paintings (of course, this caught my eyes first!) and you could not believe they're not made with oils!

This is her website:

http://www.adelinehalvorson.com

Today I went through her website again and found on her FAQ a link to an article she wrote about the progress of a big painting she made. I wanted to store the link somewhere, as it is a wooonderful source of advice on technique and process!


Visit her site, she's amazing!

Have a wonderful day!

Nature Ladies Series now on Etsy

Finally, my little girls are up and waiting for a new home =)

They are lovely small drawings with an approximate meassure of 5 7/8 in x 8.5 in  (15 cm x 21.6cm) made with Staedtler fineliners, Sakura Pigma Brush, Hybrid Metallic Gel Pen on Strathmore Mixed Media paper.  I made around 15 sketches, and I'm just uploading the ones I've finished already for you to check them out.

Please, visit my Etsy Store  to see them and my other available drawings! Or click on each one to check their individual pages. Of course, the scanned image is not how they really look =(  it ate the quality =(










This following 2 are already on hold <3




Thank you so much for watching!
Don't forget to visit my Facebook Page
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Have a wonderful day!