Part 3: Creating a Critter from My Mind

Creating an artwork from your imagination is like driving a car in a foreign country without a destination – you never know where you’re going to end up.

My background colors have already changed! The old fur (feather) colors were too similar to the previous background. By adding a little green, the fur stands out better.

Experienced artists have their favorite brushes and techniques for painting fur. I love my liners (scrip liners) – they hold lots of thinned paint and can make lines that begin wide and taper off to points. Simply apply pressure to the brush when you start the line and gradually ease off until the lines ends at a point. If your painting is small, rotate the canvas so you’re always using only sideways and downward strokes.


Create Winged Lightning!

A few months after being struck by lightning,  my amazing daughter asked me to design a tattoo for her that represented her survival. Even though her spine was badly injured, she has since resumed many of the activities she enjoyed before the strike.

To create a similar design, refer to the directions below.


Colored pencils are an amazing medium for designing tattoos. Just remember that the final canvas for the design is human skin – so keep your colors very bright.

1. Lightly sketch one wing and the lightning bolt.

2. Choose a palette of colors and shade your design.

3. You then have two options to complete the design:

Option 1:  Draw and shade the second wing and outline the entire design with a sharpened black colored pencil. If you need help, refer to 1.2.A3 Shortcut for Drawing with Symmetry in the Pro lessons (free until June 16).

Option 2: Scan the wing and lightning bolt and bring it into Photoshop or similar software. Use a thin brush tool to outline the shapes. To add the second wing:

  • Widen the canvas enough to add the second wing.
  • Select the lasso tool and copy the wing.
  • Flip the design horizontally, paste it, and move it into place.
  • Trim the edges with eraser tools.
  • Flatten the layers and flip the design again (optional).
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