Friday, October 29, 2010

stuck and unstuck

If you have been following this journal for the past few days, you know that I prepared two acrylic paintings to accept pastel. I finished the first one and posted it a couple days ago. I am stuck on the second painting. I could move forward adding more color, value, lines with pastel but I might get to the point of wanting to wash it off and I'm not sure this particular ground could withstand that process.

Here's how I'm going to get unstuck. I took a photo of the work and printed it out. Now I'm going to add colored pencil to the printout to see what might work when I go back to the easel with pastel. I've used this method before and it worked well. Let me know if you try it and how it works for you.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

born to the season

Here is my experiment of turning an acrylic painting into a pastel painting. The scene was inspired by the precious end-of-fall days we have had recently. This painting is best viewed REALLY CLOSE to see the part the texture plays. Click the image to enlarge.

enjoy the process

Enjoy the process. I did! Recap: I had an old acrylic painting on a piece of 18 x 18 inch masonite. It was very textured because when I gessoed the masonite, I added a sheet of tissue paper and scrunched it around with my fingers to make a few ridges.  To prepare the surface to accept pastel for a new painting, I spread Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels over the old painting with a palette knife, intentionally making additional texture with my strokes. When it was dry, I used PanPastel for the first layer of color(s). After that, I applied pastel sticks as usual (the end, the side, poking, dragging). I love the way the ridges and high areas grab the color and valleys don't get any unless I go back into them with more pastel.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

PanPastel opportunity

When the Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels was dry, I began applying pastel but quickly found that the very textured surface (intentional) really ate up the pastel stick. Aha! A good opportunity to do much of the work with PanPastel applied with a sponge.

Monday, October 25, 2010

acrylic to pastel

You may have read my October 2010 article in The Pastel Journal magazine about reworking pastel paintings. Or, if you've been following this blog (thank you!) you have seen revisions of pastel paintings. I ran out of pastel paintings to rework so I'm going to try to turn old (and very bad) acrylic paintings into pastel paintings.  Today I used a palette knife to spread Acrylic Ground for Pastels over two lumpy, bumpy old acrylic paintings. I'm not concerned with getting a smooth surface, I like a lot of texture and I can see the ghost of the old painting through the gritty new surface - that's exciting.

Monday, October 18, 2010

step art

My very clever and artistic grandsons (ages 9 and 11) made this beautiful garden collage on the steps leading out of their mother's flower garden. Click to enlarge.

Monday, October 11, 2010

a roadside attraction

I have taken about a million photos of scenery we hurry past when my husband and I are on road trips.  I'm always excited to view them later to select references for paintings but my photos are always disappointing.  Telephone poles, bridge railings, the side mirror of the car, and sometimes I have no idea what I was thinking when I pressed the shutter button. But on our way home from Leavenworth, we came upon a road crew so we were completely stopped for several minutes. And there, right beside our car was a beautiful little scene: two trees, brilliant with sunlight and steeped in shadow - bright fall foliage and tall dry grasses at their base. Click!

I thought you might be interested to see the oil wash foundation for this little 9 x 8 inch painting.

Friday, October 8, 2010

sleeping lady

This painting is from a reference photo taken while on a late afternoon walk at Sleeping Lady Resort in the Cascade mountains, Leavenworth, Washington. I guess I'm in my "dry grass" phase now. Click on the image to enlarge.