You may recall in late summer how I used Sharpies to decorate a wooden table my husband built for me.
I love Sharpies. In fact, I’m sort of an addict.
Well, fast forward to January 9, 2013. It was 10:30 p.m. and I should have already turned my computer off. It was one of those I’m-so-tired-but-I-can’t-make-myself-get-up-from-here moments.
Hardly conducive to a creative revelation.
But I was working in GIMP and I kept thinking I might be able to re-create Sharpie effects.
You know, add a digital, modern slant to the age-old practice of using Sharpie markers.
Wait. I guess they’re not that old.
Okay, so maybe I just wanted to see if I could do the “digital slant” thing… since I work with GIMP all the time for my photography.
A Little Background…
I admit, I love geometric art. Before getting into photography, I painted. A lot. Don’t believe me? Check out my paintings. You’ll see that they’re Southwestern in nature and very geometric.
But painting, while a joyful process, is time-consuming and in today’s digital age, they take for.ever.
Of course, maybe that’s just an excuse because I found a blog yesterday where this woman is creating 30 paintings in 30 days.
It’s hard enough doing 30 photos in 30 days. It’s hard staying in the creative zone enough to do that.
But back to the Sharpie art.
I like “quick art.”
So, it was at the eleventh hour that I created an image in GIMP that could pass for digital Sharpie:
Granted, the process is REALLY different. I mean who knew I’d have to figure out “stroking selections” and using the white paintbrush and pencil to really help create positive and negative space? It’s also harder to do curvy lines and flowers – which I admit I like to do, too. That’ll just be part of the fun for next time.
But here’s a couple of things that you can do in GIMP that you can’t do in real life: use filters and gradients.
So, if you go to filters > distorts > whirl and pinch, you get something like this:
Now, you can either work with that image or use the original to add a gradient. Is this not awesome (not the work itself, necessarily, but the fact that you can do this)?
Here’s one more cool thing that you can do: use the paintbucket tool to fill in various areas – I love how it changes the image, but it’s still recognizable.
If you haven’t tried some of this stuff in GIMP, my professional opinion is that you’re missing out! :)