Saturday, November 8, 2014

"Stink Eye" 11 x 14" pastel on sanded paper

"Stink Eye"  11 x 14" on sanded paper
I was messing around with my camera the other day and woke my cat Sophia who was snoring in the studio next to the window. She was quite irritated with me as you can see by her squinted glare and gave me the stink eye as I kept tapping her basket to get her to look at me The photo was really fun though since I used the macro setting on my camera.  I wanted to create a drawing from the photo as close to photo realism as I could manage with pastels.  I work tight normally, but this drawing is extra detailed, even for me, so it was quite a fun challenge.  I thought I would include the photo so that you can see what I was working from.  As you can see I was quite liberal with the colors in the drawing.

First I created a monochromatic under painting in blue tones, using rubbing alcohol and an old brush to paint the dry Rembrandt pastels onto Uart sanded paper.When the paper dried I applied the pastels in very small hatching strokes.  When I was ready to blend I used a very hard Derwent white pastel stick sharpened to a point, instead of blending with my fingers.  When you look closely at the painting you can see that I created the impression of browns by layering a rather vibrant pallet of blues, reds, golds and purples.

I did something very different with this painting when I was done.  I have been reading that many pastel artists do not mat their work done on sanded paper because the tooth of the paper will keep the pastel from dusting off on the glass as long as the frame is tight.  This was my first attempt at framing a pastel with out a mat and I was thrilled with the result.  The pastels are so much more vibrant when pressed against the glass, and I don't have to worry about the dust staining the matting.  I would never do this with normal paper.

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