As my final art project this year, I created a drawing of the northern lights, using crayola crayons. I'm very proud of this piece, due to the fact that I used such an unusual medium. Crayons are usually regarded as a small child's art tool, used to create nothing more sophisticated than simple doodles and stick figures. I've worked with crayons before, using the encaustic technique, which involves melting them over a paper placed on a hot surface, but this is the first time I've ever used plain crayons without any other techniques.

This is probably one of the fastest art projects; I completed the entire thing in under a week. I started by finding the image I wanted to base my drawing off of, which is available at this page. The picture has a nice blend of colours, which made my drawing have good visual appeal when it was created.

After I'd found a picture, I did a quick sketch of where I wanted the general elements to be. I sketched in the tent from the picture, and placed the lines of the boundaries of the northern lights. After sketching in the lines in pencils, I started actually colouring the project.

While colouring, I had a piece of looseleaf beside me, which I used a lot for testing how different colours of crayon blended together. I also had a pencil sharpener, which I used to keep the crayons sharp, so that I could keep my lines and shading clean and even. The tent took me one art class to complete, and the northern lights two. I really enjoyed the challenge of blending the colours together realistically. Ordinarily, colour blending isn't one of my stronger areas. I prefer pencil drawings over pencil crayons or markers, because I feel I'm generally more capable with greyscale drawings. However, I very much like the way my crayon drawing turned out.

This piece was used as a crossover for my final project for geography. We had to create a drawing of a Canadian landform. Even though northern lights aren't technically a landform, I think that the landscape is very much Canadian. I wanted to have my drawing be something unique, knowing that everyone in the class would be drawing mountains and rivers with common mediums such as pencils, pencil crayons, or paints. I'm definitely the only one to have chosen crayons, and my drawing has generated a lot of positive response.

I think that this piece of art is inspired by two sources. One is the encaustic style that I mentioned earlier. I've done encaustic work a handful of times before, and I love the way that you can make the colours as vivid or subtle as you like, simply by adding grey crayon or not, and blend so naturally. Encaustic is probably one of my favourite styles, because it's so unique and not widely used. The second source I believe I took inspiration from is Jeffrey Robert, an artist who focuses exclusively on crayons. His drawings are viewable here
This project was definitely a challenge for me. Circular Gallifreyan isn't an easy way to write, and large pieces such as this take ridiculous amounts of planning. Admittedly, I got a bit sick of working on this towards the end, and the colouring isn't great. Then again, I'm no master with pencil crayons as it is.

Circular Gallifreyan is, as described on the television show Doctor Who, the language of the Timelords. In the show, there are multiple places where the language can be seen, most often on the TARDIS's display monitor, and most famously in the complex design found on the Doctor's pocket-watch. However, the symbols used in the show are complex, and don't translate well. It appears to be that there is a different symbol for each word. While this would make sense for Timelords, who live far longer than humans and therefore have much more time to learn the language, it doesn't work as well for the average human. Thankfully, some awesome fan by the name of Loren Sherman, who I believe is only slightly older than myself, created a much easier language that looks remarkably similar to BBC's Circular Gallifreyan. He's also created a very thorough PDF instructable, available here:

For my project, I also took inspiration from a drawing Loren Sherman created in photoshop, featuring a poem from the Doctor Who series. His creation, viewable here:, is much more impressive than my final piece, and the layout was less traditional. My Gallifreyan artwork features a lengthy, but very famous, line from Doctor Who. “People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect – but actually, from a non-linear, non-subjective, viewpoint, it's actually more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly, timey wimey...stuff.”

To create this project, I first had to write out every word onto a separate circle of paper. When writing Gallifreyan, each word consists of a circle. The circle will have more circles, domes, lines, and dots, each specifying different characters. Each word-circle is arranged into a much larger circle to create a sentence. When a sentence is long, as mine is, words are read counterclockwise, from the bottom of the outward-most circle, proceeding inward in consecutive circles as you go around. It's a very unique form of writing. To make sure all my words would fit, I had to cut each one out separately, arrange them on a paper, and then trace the final arrangement onto a much larger piece of paper.

After my design was traced, I 'spellchecked' it, making sure that no overlapping lines didn't change the meaning of my work. I then traced it with a sharpie marker. After that, I coloured it with a variety of shades of blue. Blue was chosen because, well, it's Gallifreyan, and the TARDIS is blue.

Colouring this design was possibly the most annoying and frustrating part, and I admittedly slacked off a bit. The end result isn't near as neat as I would have liked it to be. Overall, I feel that while I did put a lot of time and effort into this work, I got tired with it after a while, and as a result, the artistic ability is no longer quite there.