Playing, experimenting, exploring, having fun. Decided to try cold-pressed watercolour paper with more texture than I'm used to, and I don't mind the end result too much though I doubt it will be what I ultimately go for. Still, I did enjoy doing the background and messing things up. The panda above was drawn with the dip pen and Winsor & Newton non-waterproof inks so that I could get a smudgy effect once I added water.
And the panda (and mouse!) here was painted with a brush and waterproof Winsor & Newton indian ink, over which I washed a bluey grey. The lines are thicker and the very fine brush a bit difficult to handle but I do like the awkward-line result as well. The background was painted with a mix of Van Gogh acrylics and Winsor and Newton watercolours. Black splatters and messy splashes are mostly in ink.
Fortunately I don't have to make any definitive choices yet and can keep going with the flow and enjoying myself while I'm at it. Planning a lot more experimentation till I'm happy enough with the result to stick to one style or look for the whole book. Meanwhile yes, I'm still enjoying myself hugely ... this panda is cheeky and playful, and it's a lot of fun getting to know him better. Cheers.