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Art Jealousy?

I recently rediscovered the artist, Alisa Vysochina (Alisa Draws) on YouTube. I took a liking to her art style last year when I first jumped into my journey of learning to create with watercolors. Since then, I've decided to take a closer look at what she speaks about in her videos; not just her work. This video, Hardcore Art Jealousy really stuck with me and I wanted to make a post about it!

Art trading with Mara

This cutie is for sale in the shop!

Happy Friday, creatives!

It has been another stressful week, but I am glad it is over and I welcome the weekend with open arms! Today, on Instagram, I announced my desire for art trading with artists who've came across my work on Instagram. I gain so much inspiration by following other artists who are interested in the same subject matter and mediums as I am. Unfortunately, the artist life can be quite..broke! The next best thing is to trade artwork! In doing so, I can share a piece of myself with another artist and grow my art collection. I hope others have came across my PSA and would like to participate with me for the month of October.

In doing that, I am also offering a Halloween Special on both commissioned work and Ready to Ship artwork. Head to the Shop page for more details and to take a peek at the spooky cuties listed for sale.

Art Therapy: Art as healing

It is no secret that many famous artists (past and present) suffered from mental illness or even physical illnesses. I have not been diagnosed by any medical professional, but I know my body more than anyone else and I'm certain I have experienced bouts of anxiety and stress on a frequent basis. I am very happy that I have art to turn to; not just because I enjoy it or I have developing talents with it, but because it soothes those ailments without the need of medication. This may not be the end-all-be-all for everyone, but it works for me!

Magical artwork vibes

My magical unicorn; the first of it's kind. :)

Happy Friday!

I am realizing that my one year anniversary of painting is soon approaching! I am both surprised and proud of myself. Often times, my interests are fleeting from one hobby to another...but I really stuck it out with this one. I have tried cross-stitching, knitting, acrylic nail art, and many others but its been a whole year that I have attempted to learn more and do more with fine art. Yay!

Upgrade! New Watercolor Art Supplies

Wow, I haven't posted here in awhile. It seems there is never enough hours in a day to do all the things. I'm here today, though, to gush over my latest upgrade in watercolor art supplies! If you've been following my blog, you know that last year my fiancé purchased me a plethora of new and amazing art materials for me to dive head first into creating fine art. I've had a year to work with the  Kuretake Gansai Tambi Watercolors, Reeve's Gouache, Holbein Artist's Gouche and Dr. PH Martin's Hydra Liquid Watercolors. Overtime, I have developed my likes and dislikes about certain water colors and I think I have come to a solution on how to get all of what I fancy in one place.

My Needs in Watercolor



-Palette friendly

-Generous Mixing Area

-Some lightfast capabilities

After researching a lot of the top artist/professional grade watercolors like Daniel Smith, Winsor & Newton, Schminke, and others I actually landed on a Korean brand that I've been hearing about over and over. YouTube is the biggest advertisement when it comes to the hype of certain art tools and supplies; once again I fell for the trap. (Although, I have never been lead wrong on good art supplies!) Behold, the Mijello Mission Gold Class Watercolors and the Mijello Bullet Proof Glass palette! My artist idol, Jacquelin de Leon and others use this brand and highly recommend it (as well as Daniel Smith for granulation). After e-mailing Jacquelin on skin tone additions to this palette, she recommended Daniel Smith's Naples Yellow Red for lighter skin tones that mix well with the browns in the Mission Gold 34 set. I wasted no time in making my final decision, since these were the paints I were already itching to purchase. I also headed to Dick Black website and purchased a couple Black Velvet Silver squirrel hair blend brushes. These are said to be the highest quality watercolor brushes. I've never had any good quality brushes before and I am very excited to try them. I am pretty sure what I've been using is the wrong shit.

Overall, I am very excited and I can't wait until everything arrives!

Art Experience: Custom Sticker Designs

If you have been following me on Instagram (@maramedium) you know that I have fallen head-first in love with the hobby of planners. I've kept agenda books and planners since grade school, but I've not experienced anything like this. With the planner hobby, I get the chance to mesh my interests of hand lettering/typography, scrapbooking/memory keeping, and more. All of this also helps me keep up with my day-to-day happenings. Lord knows I am forgetful!

One thing that you will learn very clearly about this hobby, is that participants love their stickers. There is an entire community of Etsy.com shops dedicated to beautifully made stickers, icons, labels and more for decorating your planner pages and customizing it to your style. Recently, JustPlanningAround sticker shop contacted (with a recommendation!) me and was hoping to get an exclusive character sticker set designed for her shop. I put my thinking cap on and went to work. Ultimately, I created this cute fish girl! Yury, the shop owner, loves her and will soon be featuring several activity stickers with this cute fish (Including the one you see above as a welcome to her shop!)

I've never had my artwork turned into a sticker before, so I am quite excited about it's debut. I think the stickers will be fun and enjoyable to all. This was an experience for me, as I've not made artwork for such a small format (an inch or less) or a custom character before. I love how everything came out and I hope the customers will as well.

Check out JustPlanningAround shop, and keep an eye out for these sticker's debut!

Wishlist: Caran D'Ache Watercolor Crayons

Happy Thursday, artists!

I thought I'd finish off the week with my second sketchbook tour! I am slowly trying to rekindle the fire of my art Youtube channel. I had almost forgotten how much I enjoyed filming and editing my art process! Check out my latest upload at MaraMedium, Sketchbook Tour (July 2016 - March 2017). Today I wanted to talk about an art supply item that I am drooling over and is definitely on my Wishlist. Keep reading for more!

How I price my artwork

My most recent commission, ready for it's new home!

I've had the blessing of receiving a few interested customers in commissioned artwork. I thought it'd be nice to share how I price my artwork as well as custom pieces. With any hand crafted work of art, it takes time, talent and materials to complete. Keep reading for more details if you're interested!

Art trade with my favorite artist?!

Recently I had the pleasure to do a trade of sorts with one of my favorite artists, Kiara Moore! You may know her as KiarasStudio on YouTube and Instagram. I discovered Kiara's work via YouTube one day when I was researching which alcohol based markers to purchase. I instantly fell in love with her artwork style as well as her personality! She is so funny and creative; always keeps her viewers thinking and wanting to create. Since then, I have strived to be the best artist I can be and taken many new turns in discovering my art style.

I purchased a RENDR sketchbook in October/September of last year and only recently cracked it open to start on it. The paper quality lived up to it's name but ultimately it was just not for me. I did not enjoy the dulled/greyed white of the paper and how it dulled down my alcohol based colors. It is an expensive sketchbook for any artist who loves to try different things. At $17-18 USD I didn't want it to go to waste! I knew that Kiara enjoyed this type of paper and often used it in her videos, so I contacted her in regards that she may like to do a trade/swap with me. I was willing to trade the sketchbook with her for any one of her available postcard sized works of art. She contacted me back and said yes! I was so happy and excited! I really do admire her, and this was such a sweet thing for her to do. She is a very busy person between managing her YouTube channel, art commissions and daily life. I packaged up the sketchbook with some extra art goodies I think she may like, and mailed it out as soon as I could. In fact, I received her part of the trade before I even mailed her package. One more reason to art-crush on her!

The beautiful artwork I received is this image below. Check out her awesome video on the creation of this piece. (I love when there is a video of an art piece that I purchased from the artist!!)

Review: Blick Studio Brush Markers

Despite my absence here on the blog and on my artTube channel, I have been in a great creative mood and I have been making art steadily for the last few weeks. Add me on Instagram @maramedium to see daily posts of what I've been up to. Lately, I have been truly giving my alcohol based markers, the Blick Studio Brush Marker set that I purchased back in October 2016, a real shot. I will admit, it was a new medium that I was excited about, but shyed away from upon their arrival. Shame on me! Once I got the hang of a few techniques, I immediately fell in love! A few artists on Instagram have asked my opinion about these markers and how they compare to Copic. I thought it was time for a review!

The artist and the artist's style

My ultimate goal right now, as an artist, is to get to a point where I have developed my style of artwork. You know, the point where you can see a collection of works and see the cohesiveness. The point where you can see a curated gallery of works from various artists and always be able to point out the pieces that belong to a certain artist. That is the point at which I want to reach. I feel like this point is reached only after months (even years) of continuous work in your choice of media. I feel like at times I shall never reach it. I have always identified myself as a versatile artist. There is no one defining factor that points my work out. Between digital and hand drawn/painted work; you cannot tell. I also enjoy so many different mediums that it is impossible to stick to one (I also find it nearly impossible to mesh them all the way I want). If I can never pin point a few factors that seem to "make up" a certain style, I fear I will never find mine.

Personal factors that will help me reach my style

*Focus on one type of subject matter (i.e. florals, female figures, faces, clothing, etc)

*Consistency with one to two mediums (i.e. watercolor, gouche, pen/ink, alcohol markers)

*Choose your color palette tone (This is just the ultimate struggle. I literally love them ALL)

Overall, I personally feel as if, if I don't buckle down on these things I will never be able to find my footing. I am exasperated with just trying. Not to mention, out of all paper types (watercolor, marker, etc haha)

I recently came across a video by one of my favorite artists, Tori of Juicy Ink. She expressed her feelings of wanting to ditch her art style in order for her to branch out and experience/learn more. She felt as if she was somewhat stuck between financially supporting herself, pleasing her fan base and doing what she feels is right and pleasing to her own heart as an artist. Towards the end of the video I feel as if she's made up her mind, yet she really still wants to hear what viewers would have to say about the subject. I can only imagine what she is feeling right now! However, being the position that I am currently in; I can only dream of trading places with her right now. It seems SO hard just to get to Square One with finding your art style. To completely abandon it...I can't think of it. I do agree with her when she states that her style is a part of her; she couldn't complete leave it behind even if she wanted to.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Although I am a firm believer in celebrating the ones I love in various acts of kindness every day (not just once a year) throughout the year, I am very grateful and appreciative of the way my fiance takes care in making sure the day is special for me. This year, he definitely floored me with the biggest Valentine's Day surprise...yes, even bigger than the 50 inch+ pink stuffed unicorn I received last year.

Happy 2017: Another Year of Art

Commission for Markita Booker, reborn doll artist of My Sweet Baby Reborn Nursery

Happy New Year, everyone!

I am excited to start a new year and see how my artwork blossoms in 2017. It seems, lately, I have had my dealings in a lot of different art mediums..including digital artwork for TwitchTV users! I'm anxious and looking forward to trying all kinds of new things this year. If you head to the Commissions section of my blog you will see lots of new custom art options added to my list of things you can purchase; including a set-up of your very own personal blog! I find customizing my blog one of the most rewarding aspects of being a graphic design, so I thought I'd share my self-taught skills of webdesign with you all.