Art Journal for Young Love

Hello Peoples! Welcome to this week’s edition of The Artistic Biker.  June 9th is the anniversary of the first date for me and and my beautiful, young bride.  Fourteen years ago, the woman destined to be my lover wanted nothing to do with me.  I asked her out on a date and she was hesitant because she barely knew me.  I told her that it could just be as friends so we could get to know each other.  She asked if she could bring a friend and I told her that’d be swell.  That night I got all primped up and gathered my best friend Kenny up to play wing man with her chaperone.  She outsmarted me by bringing two friends.

We went to the drive-in movies.  I have no idea what we saw because I was busy staring at her all night.  We left the friends in the pick-up and we spread out on a blanket.  She looked up at me & saw shooting stars.  She saw DOZENS of shooting stars.  The stars she saw were zig-zagging in the sky and she said, “HEY! Stars aren’t supposed to move back and forth!” I looked up at them and pointed out to her that they were moths in the light of the movie projector.  We laughed and played and giggled the rest of the night and when I leaned in to kiss her goodnight she turned her head and yawned.  Fourteen years later and we still only want to kill each other a little bit.  :)

I wanted to demonstrate with this page various ways of highlighting areas in your art.  The four main ways used in this piece are outlining, spotlighting, clipping, and spotlight glazing.  The outlining is obvious, I used light paint to show the edges of things in the dark.  This has the effect of looking like light bending around and reflecting off of the object, but if over done just looks like “outlining.”  The spotlighting is evident in the thought bubbles.  I made and area lighter than the rest of the page to draw your attention to it and then placed an important piece of the image there.  If you don’t put something relevant in your spotlight, it will distract your viewer and he will walk away realizing something was missing but maybe not being able to place a finger on it.  The clipping trick is to cut the image from a different source.  I usually draw mine in a sketchbook, color them and then paste them into the piece.  The different colors used, the different textures, even the fact that the clippings haven’t been worked the same way as the rest of the page makes  them stand out a little against the background.  This can be especially true of a magazine clipping as the ink tone and lighting will likely be VASTLY different than your work.  Lastly, the glazing.  This is the technique I use more often than anything else because so many times I start a piece only to shift focus halfway through.  By picking an area you want emphasized but not lightened, you can effectively spotlight it by glazing everything around it with a transparent dark.  In the video, you’ll see where I placed a round mask (in this particular instance, it was a PVC 4″ rounded cap) over the dancing hot dog.  I used black spray paint from 12″ – 18″ away and let the mist fall over the rest of the picture.  I especially like doing this with spray paint because it’s fast and not immediately obvious as there are no brush strokes or heavy lines added.  This is also good with spray inks or acrylics.

Problem areas for me are things like making that blanket we are laying on look like a blanket.  If you look closely, you’ll notice there is over a foot of blanket left over on my side where I kept scooting closer to her.  There is barely any visible blanket on her side where she kept scooting away.  :)  Anyway, if you have any tips or advice on how to make a painted blanket in the dark look like a blanket, I’d love to hear from you.  You can leave the information in the comments below or email me at  I will share that with everyone on my U-stream broadcast, The Artistic Biker Live!, on Thursday night from 7-9pm central U.S. and also on the following YouTube video.

You can watch the video for Art Journal for Young Love at The YouTube or simply click play in the embedded player below.  Remember to comment, rate, and share these videos because it helps to grow the family!

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