Sunday, August 25, 2013

learning, learning, learning

Pastels- seemingly simple, yet so many nuances (just like baseball, if you ask me, but that's for another day...)  I decided to set up my 'studio' out on my deck to enjoy the beautiful day we are having here in the Hudson Valley. My sweet husband is golfing today, so I have the place to myself. 

I've been watching a lot of YouTube videos and reading online article about how to use pastel. One GREAT tip I learned from Karen Margulis about making your own surfaces- use clear gesso - when painted onto a surface, it creates a wonderful tooth on which the pastels sit, layer after layer. As soon as I saw this on her YouTube video, I knew I had to try it. I used a piece of Mi-Teintes pastel paper and first taped it down. Then painted on a light layer of the clear gesso. So simple and really works well. I love this because the Mi-Teintes was not 'toothy' enough for me and now it is. Since I am learning, this allows me a less expensive (dare I say cheap?) way to practice, practice, practice.

Another nugget of advice I gleaned off of the Internet- use the same reference and paint it many many times to improve pastel painting on all levels. Again, this just makes sense to me. I went through my gazillion photos I've taken from various places and settled in on one photo of a marsh on Edisto Island. I picked it because it leaves much to the imagination and I can see changing colors easily. So here is "Marsh 1". My goal is to keep re-painting this one image to improve my pastel skills. Marsh #1 is at sunset.

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