A Recovery Blog

This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018


Over the years I've gathered up art supplies.  Some I've given away to a friend when I haven't been working for a while on art, but I invariably return and pick up a few more things to try out.  This past month I've gotten a set of Caran D'Ache Neocolor II watercolor crayons.  I've tried them out a couple of times and I really like them.  The colors are rich and easy to apply to the paper and I can get some good texture coming through on my drawings.  I also got some Sennelier watercolors and I already had watercolor pencils.  I've done a small comparison test between them and they all have their strengths and they are all different.  The most versatile of them, for me, is the Sennelier watercolor.  I intentionally got artist grade watercolors to replace my student grade watercolors because I had read in a research book that there really is a definite difference in quality.  I can see/feel that it's true.  You can paint and you can draw with these watercolors, whereas with the watercolor pencils and crayons it has some bias towards drawing.  I'm still feeling them out.

The simplest way to learn about line, shape and value is with a pencil.  With portraits I usually do a pencil drawing, especially with watercolor portraits.  I've found sometimes the underdrawing is a stronger image than the painted image, but that is because I am still learning about painting.  Still learning about drawing too, about process.