Prisma Colored Pencils

I love the Prismacolor Premier Soft Core Colored Pencils. They work perfectly for me in my mixed media projects. They are available in 150 colors and come in sets of 12, 24, 36, 48, 72, 132 & 150. You can also buy them individually when you just need to replace a color or two, which is always a plus!

They are very soft which makes them blend so easily, this makes combining them with other mediums works so well for me personally. You do need to be careful & avoid dropping them as the core is very soft and therefore can break easily. For me this is a small price to pay to get the effects I can achieve. If they do break a little trick is to put them in direct sunlight for a few hours. Some say to use a microwave, but I personally do not recommend doing that, as microwaves use too much heat.

I also recommend buying the Prismacolor pencil sharpener to use on these. They are specifically designed for the soft-core pencils and I find the lead breaks less when I use mine. Another tip is to use a nail file instead of a sharpener. Simply twist the pencil while filing to get your fine point.

To make your blends you can use a blender pencil or stub to blend your colors smoothly. If you do not have a blender pencil, that’s ok just use a lighter colored Prisma pencil instead. I also at time use  Gamsol mineral spirits sometime. However, I recommend only using that when you know you are not wanting to layer more color on top. Trying to add more color over top after using mineral spirits sometimes doesn’t work very well as the spirits tend to create a layer that is too smooth for the new color to adhere too.

Also, when you use these use a piece of paper to rest your hand on to prevent the oils, dirt & sweat from smearing the color. Your hand can also leave a thin layer of oils that may make it harder to get the color to adhere properly to your paper.

These can be bought easily online at a variety of places. I bought mine from Amazon. Hopefully these tips will encourage you try them out for yourself if you haven’t already.

Hugs & Love from Ranae’

NeoColor II

One of my favorite products to use are the NeoColor II Artist Crayons by Caran d'Ache. They have a very high pigment and can be used on so many of my mixed media projects. They can be bought in sets of sets of 10, 15, 30, 40 or 84. You can also buy just one at a time, which is perfect when you find you use up your favorite colors.

I use them on almost all of my art projects. I find the ease of use and the wide variety of colors often works better for me than using one of my regular watercolor sets. Plus they are perfect to use when you want to carry them with you, just grab a few colors, put them in a little bag with an aqua brush and your ready to go.

There are various ways that I apply the color to my projects, so I thought I would share those with you. Most times I apply them with an aqua brush, which is basically a brush with a barrel that holds water, but I also use them with my regular water color brushes also.

The way I apply them when I want less pigment, or I am working on smaller areas where I don't need a lot of pigment, is to scribble the color onto another piece of paper and then use the wet brush to pull some color off the paper. I enjoy the control I get when doing it this way, unfortunately you do waste some of the color this way.

Another way I use mine is to color with them right onto the project I am working on and then use a wet brush to dissolve the crayon marks. I personally don't use this method often as I have found I have less control this way. Also it can sometimes leave traces of hard lines on the paper or doesn't smooth out as well as I would like.

 My favorite way to use them is to pull the color right off of the crayon itself using a wet brush. This is great for projects that are larger and you need more pigment to spread around or if you want it to be bolder in color. It does tend to make your crayons odd in shape but that doesn't bother me since I get the results I want.

A little tip when using them right off the crayon, you may need to scrape a bit of the top layer off to get to the full pigment. The outer layer seems to be a bit more waxy and often doesn't pull the color unless you do that. You don't need to scrape too much though just a very thin layer.

You can also just use them as you would a crayon or regular pastel without using water at all. This is nice when you want a bit of texture from a rougher type of paper or if you want a pastel look and they blend very easy this way also. You can blend them with your finger or with a blending stub. I personally do not use them in this way, but have seen some wonderful pieces by other artist's done in this manner.

You can find these in a wide variety of places, just type the name into Google and you will find them easily. I hope you found some helpful tips and will try this great product.

Hugs & Love from Ranae'

You Deserve Your Passion


Art is more than just a pretty picture. It is a Passion that dwells deep inside of us. It is an expression of all the beautiful parts we hold within, 

both good and bad. Art inspires, heals, motivates, transforms, and connects us with our inner self as well as the very essence of our lives.

We are all creative beings by nature, perhaps your creativity is not artistic, it may lean more towards music, dance, photography.  Perhaps your creativity lies within your ability to problem solve, sing, mathematics, healing, design, inventions. Whatever your passion is, it is born from creativity. Born from that first  creative idea you had when you realized that you wanted to become a...

No matter where your passion lies it is important! It's so easy to give up, to say you have no time, money and/or resources. Find that time, an hour a day, half an hour a day even just 15 minutes a day. Find the money, a dollar here or there set aside, start a kick start for some funding.  Find the resources, Google is your friend, ask people in your networks. Trust me, if it is a passion within, then you can and will get to where you want to be. But since it is 'your' passion it is you who has to begin.  You may be amazed at how easy it is to start developing your special passion(s) once you actually get started.

If you push aside your passion(s) then you will never truly be "You". There will always be a part of you that is missing, an emptiness you will feel inside. You deserve to be the passionate, creative soul that you dream of being!

Hugs & Love from Ranae'

Grand Opening


Crazy Daze & a new Studio

It's been a whirlwind in my life lately. Many ups and downs
that intruded on the things I really wanted to get done.

But all is better now & I have been busy moving to a new
home, located in Tampa.  Moving is so much fun, right? As if !!!
Sooo many boxes to unpack and a lot of empty shelves
to fill, in my new Studio, but it's getting there.


Grand Opening Celebration 

50% off ALL Prints

To help us celebrate I am offering 50%
off ALL prints in my Etsy Store
during the next week.

Click the photo or Discount Code to go
to my Etsy Store & use the following
code to get your special discount.

GRAND2018


Coming Soon

I am creating some YouTube videos that will include tips on various
artistic techniques, as well as some speed clips of projects I am
working on in my art journals. So be sure to watch out for those on my
social media profiles Which can be found at the top right of web page.

Another exciting addition will be "Throwback Thursdays"
where I will be highlighting various art project's from
my past with ideas and tips about how I created them.


Greeting Card Sets

Soon I will adding these greeting cards to my Etsy store.
So be sure to watch my Social Media channels
so you will know when they are available.
Each set is packaged in a protective Crystal Clear Box, which
includes 8 [Blank Inside] Greeting Cards - 2 of each Design
- 8 Envelopes & they will be available in two different sizes.
Who knows I may just run a special discount to
help introduce them So be sure to stay tuned.

Emotions and Art

It’s still funny to me how often emotions change the way an art piece will look. For example, I decided I wanted to start a new art journal and fill it will girls. So on May 30th I opened up my brand new Strathmore Soft Cover journal book and began to sketch.

My sketch quickly showed all the emotions I was feeling on that day. You see it was my middle daughter’s birthday and sad to say that she and I are not in contact with each other, it was also the day my Oldest daughter contacted me with some hardships she is going through, which only intensified my sadness. It was an emotional time and yes I cried as I sketched. My girls eye’s seemed to carry every emotion I felt, and I now wish I had scanned her when she was just a sketch so I could show you just how much she changed.

20160603_132902-1

I just finished her today and was sharing her with a friend of mine when I realized she no longer looked deeply sad but more wistful instead. I am thankful for that and quite pleased with the end results. As I pondered this I noted that it was actually only a couple of very slight changes that made her lose some of that sad look. The corners of her mouth were evened out and no longer curved down and the slant of her eyes opened up a bit.

As I thought of this I realized how our emotions often can change in somewhat the same manner. A slight change here or there can also change how we are feeling. A change of scenery can often bring us from feeling dreary to feeling hope. A relaxing bath can help take some of the stress of our day away. A kind word from a stranger may make us forget the heaviness we were feeling only moments ago. It’s really quite amazing when you think about it, how often we literally decide (without realizing it) to stay in our down frames of mind, when all we really need to do is make one tiny change, then another tiny change, here and there until once again we are at least feeling wistful instead of sad and then from wistful to happy again.

Whistful_Girl_Ranae-3

So next time you’re feeling low try to remember that often the slightest change is the first step to feeling better quicker. Just like our Art our emotions can be changed if we just try a little something else.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’