These imaginative doodlewashes come from Fiona Rose, who grew up in a creative family in New York City (follow her blog by clicking here!). Her father was an avid photographer so they had a black & white darkroom in the basement, and she was hooked. Fiona went on to receive a BFA in fine art photography but never did anything with it as a profession. She says, “This was all pre-digital, and when things shifted to computers in the art world I just never really paid attention, so eventually was very much out of the loop.”
Subject-wise, she’s very interested in what she imagines to be “the unseen worlds around us. I draw solely from my imagination, with some photo reference to check anatomy of animals.” (Love this! This is one of the clear distinctions of doodlewashing vs. urban sketching… sometimes you can just explore what’s inside your own imagination rather than only what you can see in front of you!)
Of course she is also inspired by the work of other artists, and finds Twitter to be a great resource for that (you can follow her there @Fiona_and_Co). Currently she’s writing and illustrating a children’s picture book, a bedtime story, for which she hopes to find representation in the near future.
Fiona says, “Last year I started drawing in colored pencil, which was so exciting until I went to upload my work online – and discovered how much scanners dislike colored pencil. It was frustrating, so I tried a set of Prismacolor watercolor pencils I’d been given as a gift. I added water and wow! I’m in love!”
That was literally only a few weeks ago, so Fiona is still exploring her process. Right now she’s trying out different papers, and currently prefers Fabriano Acquarello hot press cotton paper and Canson’s recycled cold press paper.
She says, “Both are great but as I work with a lot of water I need to start stretching the paper with tape. I always sketch then go over with pen & ink, erase and start with a wash. I’ve graduated to using – wait for it – a $10 Prang pan set of 16 colors, which are amazing. If you read the reviews on Amazon you wouldn’t believe it. Maybe I’ll invest in some Winsor & Newton soon but for now I couldn’t be happier.”
Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful imagination with us Fiona and we can’t wait to see more doodlewashes of your unseen worlds! Also, be sure to check out her portfolio and the link to her shop by clicking here!