Sunday, December 21, 2008

Ocean Waves

I started this piece last week and I'm really excited about working on it. We're getting a ton of snow right now but I'm happy to be housebound with my colored pencils! This piece is on a 16x16" gessoboard square with Storm Blue and White Colourfix primer mixed and applied to the surface. Like the candy apples I just finished, the colored pencil easily flakes of so I have to be very careful putting it on the surface and making sure it stays. Thus, I decided to work from the top down. The sky and ocean above the waves are done with colored pencil and solvent. The solvent helps the pencil flow more like paint. I even use my fingertip to smudge the pencil into the solvent to make it apply evenly. 

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Colored Pencil Classes

My early part of 2009 teaching schedule thus far:

Providence Art Club, Providence, RI:  Monday, February 23 and Monday, March 2, 9:30-12:30.
Must be a Providence Art Club member. Contact 331-1114

Portsmouth Arts Guild, Portsmouth, RI: Six weeks; Tuesdays, March 17, 24, 31, April 7, 14, 21; 9-Noon. Contact Portsmouth Arts Guild 293-5ART.

Studio classes to be announced later.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Larger than life candy apples

I decided to try working on a larger size 12x24" cradled gessoboard and was inspired to draw more candy apples! I really  had fun with the colors and reflections in the apples which you can't see all that well from the photo I took on my easel. I worked on the piece on Terra Cotta Colourfix primer and tried something  new with the background. I used Caran d'Arche Neocolor II and Cretacolor and water. The reason I used the two brands is because I only bought small sets and liked a various red, a blue and a brown. They are at my studio so I can't recall the exact colors but if anyone wants to know, I will get the names. It was a real challenge getting the dark background smooth on the sanded surface. I also had trouble with the flakes of the crayons getting all over the drawing and the color running into the sticks when I added water. I think next time I try this method, I would put the background on first rather than last. Another thing about working on a large sanded surface is that flecks of pencil go everywhere, all over my drawing table, my skin and the floor. I almost need to vacuum as I work! Also, I found the pencil was brushing right off the piece so I had to stop and apply Workable Fixative to keep the pencil in place. It was a learning experience. I am not quite finished, the piece is standing on my easel so I can look at it and tweak as needed before I varnish.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Lots of Waves at the Beaches

I've been walking my dog at Easton's & Second Beaches (his favorite places) and have become inspired by the waves and the high surf on blustery days. I started to notice that on cloudy days or days when the sun is barely peering out of the clouds, the most beautiful blues, grays and purples are created on the ocean and the waves as well as the sky. I've taken dozens of pictures for inspiration and I look at them every day. I am planning to work on a series of colored pencil pieces of bits of the surf or maybe the whole scene or maybe just a small part of the ocean and large part of the sky. Its making me realize how beautiful the ocean and the beach can be on gray wintery days and this is what I hope to portray in my drawings. 

Monday, December 8, 2008

Holly & Berries

I drew this little piece with my class last week. I have them working on gray Pastelboard. However, I didn't have enough Pastelboard so I made my own little experimental ground. I took a 5x7" piece of gatorboard, sprayed a layer of gesso and then rolled on a layer of blue/gray Colourfix. The surface is more textured than the Pastelboard but worked well enough for me to demonstrate the process to the class. I'm going to frame it and stand it on a small easel for the holidays! Crafty ...

Monday, December 1, 2008

Painting Donuts!

Debbi, this one is for you! I'm working with "sweets" again! Today Judy and I painted donuts in the studio just for fun. I was going to work on my colored pencil piece but then decided to give Judy's method a try. She took a workshop with a painter, Ed Carson, who works in oils with lots of color and lots of medium. Thus creating some juicy vibrant paint. We stacked the donuts and spent a few hours working on them. I am always amazed how easily I forget the basic principles of values, composition, and putting down color when I switch to a medium that I am not familiar with. If I did this still life set up in colored pencil, I would feel much more comfortable with all of these variables. My donut piece is on the left and Judy's are on the right. The bottom picture is mine too. You won't ever see my piece in a gallery but it is fun to experiment and I always learn something too.