Mooka Blues – Before and After Edition

Next Monday I’m teaching a class called Mooka Blues. When my hard drive went belly up, I lost my notes and examples for the class, so I spent a few hours yesterday trying to make samples for the class. Do you ever have days where you just aren’t happy with your work and can’t figure out why? Well, I sure do.

Yesterday was one of those days.

I did 6 different samples and didn’t like any of them. So I posted a cry for help on the CZT Facebook group. Have I mentioned that CZTs are the kindest, most helpful, encouraging, and most caring group of people? If not, well, now you know. Not 1, not 10, not 20, but 42 different CZTs chimed in with advice, examples, and encouragement. I feel so blessed to a part of such a caring community.

So, I’m following their advice and using the Diva Challenge UMT: Amphora by Lily Moom when possible, and show you the before & afters. I hope you learn as much as I did from their comments. Also, if you are in the area, come take the class next Monday!

Advice taken: “Add more blue, use a gradation of blues, use a larger pen size.”

I discovered that going over the original lines with the larger pen had an unexpected benefit of cleaning up where my coloring in had gone outside the lines. It didn’t bother me before, but I do like the neater look. Also, added amphora as a partial border.

Advice taken: “Add more blue, use darker blue, add more dark to bump up the contrast, use lines in the background.”

I started amphora in the border, which really wasn’t necessary, but I did it without looking at the step outs and messed it up, so I figured I should quit while I was ahead! (FYI – I forgot to retake a before picture in the same lighting which is why the tile looks so different.)

Advice: “Add more blue, use an 03 pen instead of 01, Use a gel pen for highlights.”

OK – It is before and after and after because I thought I liked what I had done until I imported the two pictures and compared them. I thought that with all of that dark blue and thick lines, I lost the delicacy of the original. In an attempt to fix it, I smudged all of the blue outside of the aura lines and then used a white gel to go over the aura. Not my favorite.

But they can’t all be your favorite.

Advice: “Use white gel pen for highlights, use a thicker pen (on flux), add some dark (thin, dark, undulating mooka), add more blue.) Added detail to bottom flux.

I went with subtle this time (because I can learn from my mistakes!) I liked this one to start with, but I think there is more movement and “life” in the after version.

Advice: “Mookas need more blue. Doesn’t look like it belongs with the others.”

So, another missing “before” picture. I think it didn’t look like it belonged because it had no frame and no little undulating mooka-lets. I thought to use just the undulating part of amphora, but it’s probably a different tangle altogether. Who can keep up with all of the new names? Not me, that’s for sure.


Following much of the same advice. And now here is some advice from me to you: Wait for the ink to dry if you are not using microns or you will get random hand print marks. Ugh.

Well, my 15-minutes turned into over 5-hours. I guess I should have set a timer! Stay tuned next week to see what my talented students do in this class.



13 thoughts on “Mooka Blues – Before and After Edition

  1. Thank you, Chris! That was a very useful Mooka tutorial – so many great hints and pictures. I don`t live anywhere near you or i would come to your class! I have made a print of it (for my own use only, of course!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you Cris for sharing your woes and triumphs! I love seeing these types of deconstructed and/or progress tiles. It really helps me. I tend to overwork my colour right from the start, which leaves me little room for correction. By looking at your tiles… if I can find a way to use less colour in the beginning, I’ll have more wiggle room to change things up later on. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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