Thursday, May 28, 2009

WaterLily Pond, Pastel in Progress 3

I am working this painting on pastelbord by Ampersand. And along with Ampersand's other claybord products (I am using Aquabord for watercolor), I love these hardboard panels. Pastelbord is a clay and gesso panel with a sanded dust-like surface. The surface is similar to sanded pastel paper, but much more durable and versatile. Here, I am using soft pastels on the prepared green board (16x20), but the surface will also take wet pastel techniques and acrylic (maybe I will try this on their white panel next). So many options, so little time.

Friday, May 22, 2009

WaterLily Pond, Pastel in Progress 2

10 hours and counting...
Beginning to take shape... despite the demands of daily responsibility...sweet children, work, holiday activities, life in general.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Painting "Green" Workshop, Last Day

In our final "Painting Greens" class, we glazed in the shadow areas on the leaves, using the dark glazes to unify the variety of greens created earlier. I painted in another background layer to add a little more depth to the painting.

Friday, May 15, 2009

WaterLily Pond, Pastel in Progress

Initially, I had planned on only painting watercolors on aquabord for the show I have coming up at The Bistro Bethem (Opening Reception August 10th). My goal was to create a unique cohesive group of work for the exhibit. However, I find that after doing a few watercolor paintings (especially if large scale and labor-intensive), I really need a break from that process. So I have begun a pastel (16X20 on Pastelboard) that I will include in the show as well. (And probably a few more).
At this stage, the painting mostly looks like random squiggles. My process in pastel...I will work one area at time to completion (I just can't help myself), keeping my plan for direction and "flow" in mind. As I work, I will go back and make corrections or add darks or lights to previously painted areas. I am consistently "pushing and pulling" shapes, always considering how each shape will "read" against the others in the final painting. When I see a pattern develop, I will try to include it in the over-all design plan. Very Slow-going...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Painting "Green" Workshop, Day 2

This is a small painting I am demonstrating for my class this week on "Painting Greens". I am using the "greens" color chart from last week to guide my color choices for particular leaves, considering the "warmness and coolness" of each leaf, intensity, and value in relation to each other. My goal at this step is to begin to develop the perspective with color and paint a variety of warm and cool greens for interest. Next week, I will work to unify the greens, glaze to continue to "push and pull" leaves for overlapping, and strengthen the values.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Friday, May 8, 2009

Sunflowers on Clayboard, In Progress 6

I have most of the background done. As I go, I will work around the painting and sharpen or soften the edges of each pedal, leaf, or stem. This step seems trivial, but really adds to the over-all overlapping effect. When I have worked through the entire painting, I will look again at the flower faces and pedals (my areas of interest) and add any details, shadows, or another glaze of pigment to further define the form and give the illusion of volume.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sunflowers on Clayboard, In Progress 5

I have started painting in the background for the sunflowers. My intention...a background that would provide a deep value contrast in relation to the high-key value of the flowers. And though I would like to say I intended to paint in the circular form in the background and the indication of a hedge line, sometimes a painting will take on it's own intentions. I just applied the paint, tilted the board and facilitated the movement of water. The forms developed, pigments separated, all on their own. Sometimes I like the effects best when they aren't created using a brush. Much of the painting is done this way, by tilting the board and letting the water move the paint versus using the paintbrush. I guess, after all, this is a watercolor.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Painting "Green" Workshop, Day 1

Study of Greens in watercolor
For the first class we began exploring all the beautiful greens we could make mixing different yellows, greens, and blues and accenting or neutralizing the green with Quin Gold or Perm Rose. For the above color reference, we created greens that can be used to make leaves appear to be "forward", "middle", or "background" by varying the pigments used. For example, leaves that appear "forward" were mixed using the most intense yellows (New Gamboge and Hansa Yellow Light) and most intense green, Winsor Green (or Phthalo G). For "middle area" greens, we mixed pigments that are both intense (the yellows) and the less intense glazing pigments or granulating pigments (Viridian and Ultramarine Blue, respectively). The middle ground greens developed with much more texture. "Background" greens were a mix of glazing pigments, Aureolin Yellow, Viridian, and Cobalt Blue. When developing a repertoire of greens, I considered a few principles of color perspective; properties of pigments that will give a painting perspective with color. (i.e. intensity pulls forward, neutrals recede; light values expand, dark values contract; warmness pulls forward, coolness recedes, etc.) We will incorporate these beginning techniques into our leaves painting next week.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Sunflowers on Clayboard, In Progress 4

For this painting (and the others in my clayboard series), I have chosen analogous or expanded analogous color schemes. Analogous colors, those next to each other on the color wheel, are often found in nature (one of nature's serene elements of design) and create visual harmony in a painting.