Sunday, August 24, 2014

Going With The Floral Flow

"Perennail Sunflower", 18 x 24, pastel
Sunflowers do something to me I can't explain. They are exquisite in every stage of their life from the bud to the dying bloom. Lately, I've become obsessed with them as well as other flowers. I have been painting lately on a Strathmore paper called Artagain. It is a medium weight (to me it feels very light weight) ,lightly textured and  minimial tooth paper. It is a very sensitive paper which seems to heighten my creativity level. For some reason I paint more loosely and feel freeer with this paper than with other papers. Don't get me wrong, I still have my other favorite pastel papers and continue to paint on them but for now I'm going with the flow. I'll call it the floral flow.  Here's more floral paintings recently completed. These are on Artagain and Canson Mi-Teintes paper.

"Droopy Sunflower", 12 x 9, pastel
"Windswept Sunflower", 12 x 9, pastel.
"Showoff", 9 x 11, pastel.

"Cornucopia With Sunflowers", 18 x 14, pastel.

"Morning Celebration", 12 x 16. pastel.

"Exuberance, 9 x 12, pastel.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Beautiful Things Around Your House

"Orchid Mania", 6 x 14, pastel on Mi-Teintes Touch paper.
We all have it whether you know it or not. we all have beautiful things around our house, both inside and out. Even if you don't think so remember you are an artist and you can make things beautiful. You and only you are the master of your creations...So take a little journey around your house perhaps at first light of day. Look at the little things as well as the big. A beautiful vase , a fresh cut flower, a lampshade , a cluster of rocks, tree shadows on your lawn. Take your camera or paint from reality. Whatever you choose, the possibilities are endless. Over the summer I'm doing a series along with my class to see what we can come up with. My orchid plant in my living put out its bloom for the year and I took advantage creating several paintings from it. Here's some more

"Living Room Bloom, 6 x 6, pastel on Artagain Paper.

"Orchid Seduction", 8 x 8, pastel on Artagain paper.
Here's a close up photo taken in my living rooom of of some dried tulip leaves in a blue Mikasa Vase. 
From this photo I created
"Windswept Sunflower", 12 x 9, pastel on Artagain paper.
Another photo this one outside my house. Closeup of a tree and and my driveway. 
This one turned into
"The Island Calls", 9 x 12, pastel on Artagain paper.
Take a journey around your house. You just may be delighted with what you find.
By the way, if you are interested in purchasing any of these, I would be delighted. Contact me through facebook message or email me through my website

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Great Pastel Tip - How To Transport Unframed Pastel Paintings Safely Around Town

"Garden Intrigue", 25 x 9, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper.
I stopped doing my own framing years ago when arthritis in my hands kicked in. So that meant taking them to the framers. This hint works for just one or many pastel paintings that need to be transported somewhere locally. I usually wait until I have anywheres from a few to up to 20 at a time. I don't like anything touching my pastels once they're done. I used to lay newspaper over them and it worked ok. But still, I don't really like anything on top of them since I rarely use fixiture these days. So here's a great way to transport one or many of your unframed pastel paintings around town.
Take your painting , gently attach it to a sheet of foam core backing that's larger than the painting.
Take four strips of masking tape.
Wad them into a loose ball with the adhesive side faceing out. I see one of my hairs is attached to one of them. Sigh...Oh well. Anyway take the masking tape wads and
Attach them to the foamcore board.
Cover with another sheet of foarcore board to make a pastel sandwich  but "don't eat it". Sidebar....
Don't you think that when you get a new set of pastels how beautiful they look in the box, like luscious candies waiting to be eaten but again I if you pastelists don't know already DON'T EAT THEM, LICK THEM, OR INHALE THEIR DUST!!!!
Back to the topic...
Continue the process to make your quadrouple decker sandwich or as many as you wish. Don't forget to cover with another foarcore sheet to protect the one on top.
Now your ready to take your pastels on the go. Also it's light as a feather.
Stay tuned for my next post. Coming soon.hahahaha......well maybe in a little while.
Bye for now.


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Shape Up Your Pastels

"Foothill Magic", 18 x 24, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper.
I have all kinds of tools in my pastel ensemble for blending, scraping, erasing etc,. Here is one I've been using for forever, one that many pastelists don't know about, one which I used at times in the  creation of  the painting Foothill Magic. I use this tool to create fresh, clean surfaces and shapes on my pastels sticks. It's a simple tool just a piece of lumber to which a piece of medium to heavy sandpaper has been attached.
I can't tell you how many times it has come in handy. 
That's it for today. Now back to the studio.

attach sandpaper
Piece of wood alongside one I've used and still use.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Unexpected place for a pastel painting.

"Exuberance, 9 x 12, pastel on Artagain paper.
I get in the mood to paint florals every once in a while. Well, I was in such a mood a few weeks ago when I went to our local health care facility with my husband who had to take a blood test. It was quite crowded and I guesstimated the wait to be about 20 minutes so rather then sitting in a crowded room with a bunch of potentially sick people, I walked the halls to get my exercise in. There is a corridor adjacent to the waiting room with glass walls and a lovely patio sits on the outside. I started snapping away taking photographs.
Using these photos as my referances, I created "Exuberance" and "Garden Intrigue" (shown on my last post but not a very good image). Here's a better image.
"Garden Intrigue", 9 x 25, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper.
Here are more florals I did while on a floral roll.
"Orchids and Raindrops", 12 x 9, pastel on Artagain paper.
"Sierra Tear Drops", 9 x 12, pastel on Artagain paper.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Getting Away From the Standard Rectanular Format

"Morning Serenade", 7 x 14, pastel on Canson Mi-
Teintes paper.
The standard rectangular composition is very popular especially for landscape paintings but something to think about in the planning stage of a painting is the elongated rectangular format. This shape painting fits well in difficult spaces around the house such as over a high dresser or small sections of wall where the standard format just doesn't look right. In composing this shape simply make your own view finder by cutting out an elongated shape on a piece of paper or mat board so that you can place it over your photo and more it around until a pleasing scene presents itself. Also try slanting the viewfinder for another interesting effect. Here are two other paintings I did in this shape format.

"Random Frieze With Dahlias", 10 x 26, pastel on Canson Mi-
teintes paper.

"Garden Intrigue", 9 x 25, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Speedin Up The Process

"Nature Glimpses", 12 x 12, pastel on Artagain paper.
Artagain paper has a smooth surface for multimedia use and so does not have the tooth to grab and hold many layers of pastel. It's great for quick studies done in alla prima style which means the pastels are put on in a single application instead of building up by layering. We did some quick studies using this paper in my class,. For the painting pictured above, I used four of the quick studies done in class each on six inch square sheets of Artist Tile paper. For each one the timer was set 8 minutes. For the subject matter, we all picked blind from a stack of  4 x 6 or smaller photos. we did not look at them until the timer started. Once the timer started, we painted like little bunnies.  We did this at least four times. I grouped mine together for the four paintings that comprise Nature Glimpses pictured above. This is a fun and stimulating exercise. Try it. I think you'll like it. Here's another one. This one is my demo for class quick study but this time we used a 12 x 16 sheet of Canson Mi-Teintes paper. The timer was also set for 8 minutes.

"Ping Pond", 12 x 16, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes paper.