Thursday, August 9, 2012

the heart of the matter

When I came across the reference photo for a painting that ended up in the mediocre group earlier this year and was reworked into another painting, I remembered how much I loved that color palette.  I decided to cut the ‘heart’ out of the photo to use as my reference for a new pastel painting.
I taped a piece of pale pink Art Spectrum Colourfix paper to my easel and applied an oil wash using a large brush and very loose, broad strokes. Then, starting at the top, I began applying pastel.

For me, painting with pastel is a dance between the artist, the paper, and a stick of color. The interchange is exhilarating and energizing as well as challenging and exhausting. A drag and lift of the pastel stick creates a sheaf of dried grass; the edge of the pastel touches the paper abruptly for the bent branch or twig. The play of texture against texture and color combinations as one color is dragged over another is intoxicating. The nuances and subtleties possible with pastel are unlike any other medium I have tried. Below is "Shadowland," 25 x 18 inches. This painting will be at Cole Gallery, Edmonds, Washington in the fall.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful painting Barbara! Thanks for reminding me that there is great beauty in well-lit small areas. Bigger isn't always better.