Monday, January 27, 2014

Friskett And Alcohol - What does That Have To Do With pastel painting?

"Last Summer", 15 x 19, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes Art Board.
I borrowed the concept of using frisket from my watercolor days. Before starting out on this pastel painting, The first thing I did was to cut out freehand shapes from ordinary masking tape and arranged them into what looked like an interesting placement on my canvas, one that helped to create and establish the composition and flow I wanted to achieve. In this case a loose x composition. My first layer of pastels were done in complimentary colors. I used my color wheel for this part.
Complimentary colors I used in this painting.
Detail of some of the places where I placed masking tape. Others not shown.
Once my complimentary colors loosely covered the paper, I did an alcohol wash using rubbing alcohol. I heard of one artist who used vodka ( a little for the painting, a little for her or maybe more) on second thought maybe not a bad idea. Then I proceeded on with the regular colors. Somewhere about three fourths of the way, I very gently removed the making tape as it has a tendency to pull the paper layer off with it. You want to preserve the integrity of the canvas below as it had an acid free coating on it for the preservation of the paper. Once done, I decided I liked the effect it created so I didn't apply any pastel over it. Now I proceeded to finish the painting. Btw, I felt like drinking some alcohol at times as I battled through this one.


Saturday, January 25, 2014

New Years Resolutions and Catching Up

January Day Dream, 16 x 20, pastel on Pastelbord
This is my first completed painting of the new year. Lets see, if I recall I started it last summer for demonstrating on at my home studio during Sierra Art Trails open studio event here in the foothills of Yosemite. After Art Trails, I lost interest and put it aside. After my class started up again a couple weeks later in October I assigned my students to paint it and they did a great job. I didn't continue on with my painting because I was turned off by it and had no interest in continuing on with it at this time in fact I turned it over and leaned it against a wall in my studio. I got minor pangs of guilt whenever I noticed it. Something in me felt like it was an uncompleted goal. I felt disappointed in myself but I didn't feel guilty enough. OK now it's the new year what with setting goals, resolutions and all that. I didn't make any, never do anymore. But I did feel that this painting's time had come. With fresh resolve I turned the canvas over and ughhh didn't like my beginning, too dark a pallet, "I know" I said to myself, I'll start over or go over this dark and unappealing beginning with a light and bright version. Since it was Pastelbord I was working on, no problem, the new layer of pastels took over. I had completely covered over the first layer and feeling better about the painting it seemed to go non stop until I finished it a few days later.
Here are my new works done since my last blog completed mostly from their beginnings as demonstrations for my class.
"Stormy Sky Over Oakhurst, 11 x 14, pastel on Pastelbord.
"Scintillation at Hubba Creek, 9 x 11,
pastel on Pastelbord.
"Pastel Juices Flow, 9 x 12, pastel on Wallis Museum paper.

"Sidebar Dance, 8 x 10, pastel on Canson Mi-Teintes Art Board.