Today, I am starting a new series to help you improve your skills and your art. The goal is to post a new topic in this category every week. If you have questions or ideas, please send me an email. I would love that. If I dont know the answer I will research it for you!
Toady, I thought we would begin with a tip on painting portraits or adding them to a painting. For instance a rider on a horse or child with an animal. When you paint a person the planes on the face that contain the eyes nose, mouth and chin are always parallel to each other. I have used my portrait of Eric to demonstrate.
As you can see from the diagram, all his features are parallel. The angle of his eyes, nose and the tilt of his chin. This is particularly useful if the head is tilted or turned. if your drawing doesn’t look right check the planes.
This painting is done on Le Carte Pastel card as opposed to my usual surface of velour. I will go into the painting details in a later post. I must say that it is far easier to correct mistakes on this paper. But dont get it wet ! A drop of water will eat a hole in the surface that is almost impossible to repair! This works very well with pastel pencils. You can add details with softer pastels as well.
I added a post yesterday about my newest painting experiment with pastel mat and showed you the stages. After I thought I was done, I still kept fooling with it and rubbing the pastel on the right side with more blue.
As I did this a flaw in the surface began to appear. This flaw would not be covered with pastel–no matter how much I added. Since I was unfamiliar with the surface (this was my first painting on it), I was unsure what to do to fix it and how to proceed. It looked like I would have to start over. I was not willing to sacrifice my wolf and all the time I put in to its creation. So where do you go to get answers?? The internet.
After searching, I took a paintbrush and wet it and then brushed over the area with water and let it dry overnight. This morning I awoke to a large even spot on my painting. The flaw was evened out but now I had a spot:( I added more pastel and guess what? My flaw returned. I then tried brushing off excess pastel(outside) and then spraying the area with fixative. After it dried , I applied more pastel. Guess what?? The flaw returned. Sigh….
Then I decided that since the painting was probably a goner, I added a darker color over the blue I had used on the right hand side. I brushed the blue off first so as not to have too much pastel dust on the painting. It worked very well!! I was relieved and glad to save my painting.
It also looks much better to have darkened that side. The wolf now lives in the space and the dark adds depth to the painting.
I have been experimenting with pastel pencils this week on a different surface. I wanted to offer something new in classes this year and also be able to have a class at World of Color Expo that would introduce participants to pastel painting.
Instead of using velour, I used pastel mat as my support. This was really different for me. I also used NuPastels as base colors and then Stablio Carb Othello pencils. Here was my original drawing:
This was different and fun. I base coated the main colors with the NuPastels and then added his gorgeous coat with the pencils. Here’s another picture of my progress:
I continued working and was very pleased with the results. The pastel mat holds lots of pastel. The pencils make it easy to make gorgeous fur. It was a fun way to get a realistic representation of the wolf. This will make a fun project for a one day class in March at my studio. Here’s the finished painting!