Sunday, 18 June 2017


"Try it on Tuesday" is asking for "Steampunk" or "Something Mechanical" and
"Art Journal Journey", hosted this month by Rosie, is asking for Circle Art.

I've painted a little train, it's powered by steam so it's mechanical and I also painted it with the computer mouse so that's sort of mechanical too, isn't it?


And there are plenty circles here - the two wheels on the right and the other wheels - these wheels must be circles too, don't you agree? - otherwise the train wouldn't travel very far.

* * * * * * *

I'm also having a little experiment where the pens themselves choose the colours of each painting in a four-inch sketchbook.

All the pens are in this bag and I take out three pens without looking. 

If I like the three colours together I keep them, but if I don't (for example if the colours are too similar like two pale oranges) then I'm "allowed" to take out two more, but I can only use three of the five.
I also wanted the paintings to be abstract.

This is the very first one I made.

The pens chose two greens and a red.  The purple colour inside the circley thing was made by painting green over red.
What do you think?  Did the pens choose three good colours?

More experiments next blogpost - some good colour choices by the pens, others more questionable.

I'm also linking to "Mix It Monthly" where the theme is "Lyrics from a Song".
The song I've chosen is "The Night Train to Memphis" and if you want to be amused and cheered for a minute or so Roy Acuff is singing the song here.


  1. I wonder where that train is going? Lovely colours, and thanks for joining us at TIOT, Valerie

  2. Your whimsical night train is lovely - at it's way through the night to the United Artistical Free Thinkers and Steampunky Emirates??
    The pens choose a perfect color-combination! Your little mark making page turned out lovely!
    I am happy to see the wonderful train linked to Art Journal Journey and Try It On Tuesday!
    I am very happy to see you with your whimsical. mechanical piece at both of the challenges - always a pleasure for me to see your art! I hope everything is well and the garden makes you busy and happy and the weather is good. I wish you a happy Sunday dear Sheila!
    oxo Susi

  3. Hi Sheila, your train is gorgeous! I could see that as a design on material :D)
    Your sense of fun and imagination is so sweet = yes, your pens chose very well indeed!
    I'm going to try that. Cheers and have a great new week :D)

  4. When I visit your blog, I lean back and enjoy!
    Now the night train ... yes, of course, the wheels have to be round in circles, otherwise there is no moving? For example, when the wheels are angular, the train has to jump - not to roll. I can imagine that circumstance in your picture. The night-caterpillars are astonished at that too.
    The painting and the background are magnificent!
    This bag for your pens is lovely, I think the pens enjoy their cosy bedroom? And therefore they do not want to come out ... three of them made a sacrifice to draw in the little book, but do not much think about fitting together, was it so? Free choice often is difficult, not only for pens! But you made the best of it!
    Wish you a lovely Sunday!
    Rike x

  5. Fabulous whimsical night train :) Your pens choose great colours... your rule of picking without looking is interesting. I did a lesson for Lifebook that you could only use 3 watercolour pens... but you could mix colours on a craft mat (or similiar). I loved the lesson and it's a great way to travel light. (my temporary location with have more than 3 watercolour pens but I'm not taking much else). Cheers xxx

  6. Wonderful painting, a gorgeous piece of art

    Thank you for sharing at ART JOURNAL JOURNEY and TRY IT ON TUESDAY

  7. Love the night train Sheila, thank you for sharing it with all over at Try it on Tuesdays. The colours are great for this wonderful magical scene.
    I liked how you were using just three colours, it seems a good experiment idea.
    Yvonne xx

  8. I think your train is"The Express train of Mexico" (song)πŸ˜‚ I would like to be with the magical journey!
    Good choice of your pens. Page looks fine with these colours, nice design, too.
    Have a great upcoming week πŸ˜ƒ

  9. Love your magical art. Do steampunk square wheels roll on three lines ? The caterpillars are really living up the night party. The background is terrific, makes the train really stand out. Super pens. Love it, Awesome!!

  10. Oh Sheila, your night train is fantastic. Another enchanting drawing! You know I adore your mini sketchbook, and a fun way to choose colours this time.
    Thank you for joining us at Try It On Tuesday. Mar xx

  11. Hello Sheila,

    your wheels made me giggle, the different shapes. It seems to be moving along just fine.

    And your color game is fun, reminds me of the Summer Of Color event. Where colors are given that a person might never put together. A good thing to experience.

  12. I will be enjoying the randomness of your pens choosing their colors, great idea. I'd like a ride on the night train over the sea for a visit to Scotland please? I am sure the stars would guide me just fine on that wonderful ride. xox

  13. The night train is so appealing, I want to ride it. I'll bet you know I'm loving all those bright colors in the black night. I'm kind of thinking it might be a bit of a bumpy ride but I'm sure it must be quite an enjoyable ride. Then again, the tracks look like they might be specially made for those train wheels, so it could possibly be a pretty smooth ride. The scenery and the night critters are just as delightful. I definitely like the colors the pens have chosen. I like the scene they have drawn too.

  14. I had to laugh at your whimsical train. It looks like it has special tracks for those wheels. I think you do a marvelous job with your mouse. The train does have a steampunk feel.

    I LOVE the color challenge you have set forth with the pens. I was mostly surprised that you got purple from combining the red and green. I would have gotten Christmas brown. Yours turned out absolutely joyful.

  15. I am loving this train Sheila. It's fun and I bet if they had a train like this at a kids playground they would want to ride it. And I think picking 3 markers is a really fun idea. Pushes you a bit to think outside of your normal picked colors. I think I may try that too. Hope you have a great new week. πŸ˜€Hugs erika

  16. I love your fun train and so pleased you joined us at Try It On Tuesday! I love your colour picking page! Hugs, Chrisx

  17. I am thoroughly impressed with the art you did with a mouse-love it! And what a fun challenge to play picking the markers. I may try that with paints:)

  18. love the darkness and the lights in your artwork.

  19. Your piece is definitely mechanical and those wheels are definitely round! It looks such a wonderful night train. I bet the passengers have a lot of fun!
    What a great idea, picking out three random pens. You certainly got good colours. The green and red complement each other, and that purple is lovely. A great page. Jx

  20. So funny, thanks for the song you included on your post but all I can think of is James Brown's version of The Night Train ... lol πŸ˜€. You always make the most fun art and it looks like your wheels are circular enough for that wobbly track ...Ha ha 😁. I love the trains funnel and the blue steam too. Your 3 pen colouring challenge made me smile and I like your little book of creations, I hope Douglas is helping you choose your pens 😁. Wishing you a lovely week! J 😊
    p.s. thanks for the lovely comments you left on my blog - Happy reading! J x

  21. Lovely happy and fun art and post Sheila - Love your night train and I wonder if your Caterpillars are out for a stroll or wanting to board the train. That song made me smile - just what is needed on another extremely hot humid day when its been hard to get any sleep :(
    ... If its cooler up with you, then I'm getting on that train and coming up there!!
    (hope all your furry friends are managing ok in this weather).
    I'm useless at understanding colour theory etc but your pens chose great colours :)
    The 'circley thing' made me smile and think of the 'Monsters Inc' films.
    Hope your week going well... Gill xx

  22. I like the experiment, just leave it to chance what colors can paint! Usually you always choose the same colors, which one favors. But in this way you can make new experiences.
    Your random combination is really elegant and the picture very interesting!
    Oh, and I love the colorful Toff-toff railroad!
    Love Ulrike

  23. I'd love to ride that night train, totally enchanting, I'm sure Lulu would love to come with me too! I love these little sketch books of yours and I think your pens always pick super colours, it's all in the simple design and style you have that make it for me!

  24. Circles for wheels? I think this train would be a bumpy ride . Like the colour of the train and it really shows up against the night sky. The creatures look as if they are intend on an interesting journey of their own. Good idea to let the pens chose

  25. i travelled quite some nights in my Student Interrail times, but i never had such a fun Train like this!
    your way to choose Colors is cool and inspiring. and These pens also can mix the Colors when overlaid... you got a good choice. i think that would also be a good Play for making a Color Chart of threes... you are making me think...
    have a nice summer, sheila.
    here the last days were too hot to go outside...

  26. Ohh first so sorry for seeing this link up soo late...I am so very busy these days AND I got no mail, that this link was up....uuppsi... BUT Looooove your funny train on its way to memphis, haha...the song is playing in my ear and the band is a funny busy one too, thank you for introducing them to me, haha....The train looks so inviting, and I would take him, if it crosses my way...seems it has some visitors on the way in the foreground, the funny antennas and the roof with the smoke sorta!
    Your art makes me happy and my imagination run wild as always...xox...♥ Conny

  27. Oh yes I agree to the others, this is such a fun train! It's phantastic how you met the requirements and created such a sweet artwork. I love the way how you created the night around the train. I can even hear the whistle blow and the noise of the engine ... And how much I love your idea of color choosing! Your ideas are always terrific! I will try this immediately! And I think your pens have choosen perfect colors!

  28. Love love love your train!! Awesome fun, whimsical and full of joy this train. Would make an awesome kids greeting card!! Love the colours too!!

    Hugs Giggles

  29. the visually mesmerizing..gorgeous energy, a sense of motion and magic with all of the colors..especially against the deep backdrop.. stunning!

  30. I would like to travel with you on your train. Where is the journey going? Definitely in a wonderful Sheila world!

  31. The pen chose great colours, I love this picture, not really my colours but you have made them look great together


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