PDA

View Full Version : Weekly Pastel Sketches: 1-7 September


E-J
09-01-2003, 05:36 AM
So it's time for me to open up another weekly sketch thread ...

For the benefit of newbies who have never joined the thread before and don't have a clue what it's about (not to mention any oldies out there who just weren't paying attention :D) here's the lowdown ...

The objective is to paint or sketch as many times as you like during the week, but within a given time limit, eg. 25-30 minutes, 40-45 minutes, or one hour. Time yourself, using a timer or alarm clock and as soon as the timer goes off, STOP, and share your efforts with us here!

The idea behind the set times is to get the essentials down on paper without fretting about detail. The exercise is probably most valuable if you can sketch from life but you should feel free to use a reference photo if you prefer.

EVERYONE is welcome to participate in this thread, whether you're new to pastels, a seasoned professional or somewhere in-between. No critiques will be given unless you ask for them, so this is a safe place in which to develop your pastel skills, whatever your level.

Last week's thread was a big success: we had twenty great sketches ~ and a recipe for zucchini bread!! :D Here's the link to inspire you:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=128083

Pastel is the perfect medium for sketching! Please do join in :)

Craig Houghton
09-01-2003, 07:31 AM
I may as well start things off with a sketch, so here's a hasty plein aire from a picnic yesterday. My gf and I cooked turkey burgers and otherwise had a great time, but it was a very dark and uninspiring patch of woods -- this is what I managed:

plein aire 45 minutes on 11x14 golden primed yellow matboard

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2003/21273-brooksvalepark.JPG

The mosquito population was very hard-working. We're lucky to have escaped with any blood at all.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Sep-2003/21273-picnic.JPG

-Craig

Dyin
09-01-2003, 11:34 AM
Craig, think you did a nice job on this..it recedes nicely and you have nice hightlights on the trees...gotta ask..what are the light piles?

E-J
09-01-2003, 12:36 PM
Nice going, Craig. I like the fact that you often post pics of your setup, too ... I was thinking, well, I know Craig's ingenious, but don't tell me he's found a way to use ketchup in his art! Then I read the bit about the turkey burgers ;)

Madder
09-01-2003, 07:48 PM
I know Craig's ingenious, but don't tell me he's found a way to use ketchup in his art! Then I read the bit about the turkey burgers ;)

Loud guffaw!!

Mo.
09-01-2003, 08:07 PM
Super one Craig... Like E-J I thought ...'hellooo tomato ketchup?'.. then realised the setup was your picnic table in the woods. :D

You are a one Craig.:D

sundiver
09-01-2003, 09:50 PM
Looks good to me, Craig!
You mention an unspiring patch of woods...... I was perusing my copy of "Painting From Photographs" today and found several examples by Jackie Simmonds. I was amazed at the beautiful paintings she produced from the mildly pleasant photographs- in some cases she changed the colors completely...dull browns and greens to vibrant blues and purples, for example. I resolved to try to see more potential in the views in front of me - not that I have a clue how to go about it!:)

Mikki Petersen
09-01-2003, 10:40 PM
Craig, you are inspirational. We've just moved to a wooded mountain property that I just love, but I've been looking for focal points and can't find any...duh! Look at the lovely piece you created by just looking in front of you and painting. WOW! And so fast, too!

Craig Houghton
09-02-2003, 05:01 AM
Originally posted by Dyin
Craig, think you did a nice job on this..it recedes nicely and you have nice hightlights on the trees...gotta ask..what are the light piles?

lol - that's a good question. i recall asking myself, "why are those rocks fiery light?" i expected them to be rocks, but they;re really just light piles :)

don't tell me he's found a way to use ketchup in his art!

of course not! mustard perhaps, but never ketchup :P

Thanks everyone. Thank you Dyin, E-J, Madder, Mo, sundiver, 1mpete. No sketches yet? It's already the 2nd! ;) If anyone wants a challenge -- ketchup.

-Craig

Look up! Check out the Painting Clouds in Pastel Project -- http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=129371

Dyin
09-02-2003, 11:28 AM
:D well, you render light piles magnificently!!!

edencompton
09-02-2003, 11:30 AM
Hi everyone -- This is my first post to the weekly sketching thread. I do primarily portraits in colored pencil but I really love the rich colors and vibrancy of pastels. After reading so many of Jackie Simmonds posts about the value of working from life, I have set myself the goal of sketching from life in pastel for at least 45 minutes each day. I am hoping that I will have a fast learning curve, but I have a long way to go as you can see from my first attempts below. I know the values are off in the first post -- the trees and the stonewall are too similar in value but I really didn't know how to proceed without making it too muddy.

Both are on Wallis paper, about 8 x 10 and done in 45 minutes.

Dyin
09-02-2003, 11:38 AM
Hi edencompton! Do you need help with the uploader? the keys....ah, I'm jealous!!! Some of my happiest moments in life were spent fishing out on the ocean side and riding the 7 mile bridge on a motorcycle down there...oh yeah, and munching on fried conch....:D
welcome to the pastel forum btw!

edencompton
09-02-2003, 11:47 AM
I have just tried to reduce my images several times and still can't seem to post. I've done this before -- maybe I've been in the sun too long?

Dyin
09-02-2003, 11:59 AM
naw...no moron...technically challenged??? lol....you need to make sure it's a jpeg and that its largest measurement is no larger than 500 pixels...use the uploader above the reply box...browse your puter for the resized piece, and then after you upload it just copy and paste the link right in your reply...hope this helps!

edencompton
09-02-2003, 12:07 PM
Am hoping this worked -- thanks for the help.

This first sketch is on Wallis paper, 45 minutes, from a trip home to CT a few days ago. As I said, there are some value problems, I think.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Sep-2003/7443-WeirFarm.jpg

Craig Houghton
09-02-2003, 12:12 PM
edencompton, this looks fantastic. Welcome to the thread, and I'm glad the uploader stuffis working -- it can be tricky. the colors are great and this and there's a real vibrancy. the rock wall and the lights upon the rocks really grab me. great work, and especially for 45 min.

where to in CT? We're great for rock walls :)

-Craig

edencompton
09-02-2003, 12:13 PM
Here's the second sketch from the beach. I am still trying to learn the different techniques for applying the pastel. I've learned you can't layer as much in pastel as I do in colored pencil, where I can have 10 to 15 layers of pencil to get the proper value and color.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Sep-2003/7443-Beach831.jpg

Thanks again for the help!

Dyin
09-02-2003, 12:25 PM
I'm glad you got it to work! If you do the largest measurement at 500 we can really see details...these are really great for 45 minutes...I particularly like the colors in the first one...and the sand is really awesome in the second...you could experiment with using a light coat of fixative between pastel layers...keeps the tooth up for layering...I used to play with the colored pencils...hard to do that many layers without 'bloom'...welcome to the forum...hope to see lots more!

edencompton
09-02-2003, 12:29 PM
Thanks for the encouragement, Craig -- I know I've got a lot of work to do.

As for Connecticut, I grew up in Ridgefield, CT. After being in the Florida Keys for the last three years, I realize how much I miss the light and landscape of the Northeast. Though, the Keys do have their own special beauty (Dyin -- I live two miles from the 7 mile bridge!)

The sketch was done at Weir Farm, on the border between Ridgefield and Georgetown. It was J Alden Weir's farm where the Connecticut Impressionists used to paint (Childe Hassam, etc.) I highly recommend a visit, particularly in the Fall. On Mondays, you will see lots of plein air artists out there with few tourists. (They close the visitor's center on Mondays, but keep the paths open). You should take a day trip when you get a chance!

Dyin
09-02-2003, 12:39 PM
Yeah...it's gorgeous there...but not a hill anywhere...unless you count landfills...but you definately could get a lot of cloud practice in down there! I noticed the sky on your second one seemed true to the skies down there...but I remember the water being clearer, with a lot of sandy bottom showing, along with clumps of vegetation underneath...

E-J
09-02-2003, 01:25 PM
Eden ~ wow, what great plein air sketches! Even if this feels like an alien medium to you after working with cp's, it looks to me as though you're a natural with the pastels. You've made lovely loose strokes, there's a real sense of light in the first one and I like the textures in the second sketch. So glad you've joined the thread :)

Deborah Secor
09-02-2003, 02:24 PM
eden~~ I agree, nice plein air work! I admire your committment to working outside every day. It's amazing how much we can learn that way. (Now if I would just get off this computer and go paint...) The light coming through the trees is quite beautiful. Nice colors, very nice strokes and I like the layering I see.

One thing you might find over time is that you CAN layer 10 or 15 colors on the Wallis paper if you use a light touch. A lot of it depends on the pastels you use. I often work in very soft pastels (Great Americans and Schmincke mostly), so I put down a breath of color and then go in very lightly with maybe two or three others over that. Then I grab my Giraults, which have just wonderful colors and layer in several more, light as a feather. The Giraults seem hard to the touch but when there's pastel in place already I find they make a nice soft blend. After I have the soft pillow of color established I can marry much more into it--and that's one of the strengths of the medium.

At the risk of becoming a prima donna (Deborah ducks...) here's an example (hey, this little part didn't take more than 60 minutes, so I should be safe):

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Sep-2003/23609-Golden2.jpg

Even this one doesn't show all you can do, but it's a start.

Dyin
09-02-2003, 02:59 PM
ok...want to see the rest of that one, Deborah...strokes look cool...want to see how they translate...

Deborah Secor
09-02-2003, 03:26 PM
Dyin, I did this as an illustration for an article that was in the PJ, so I have a whole series of pix. I think maybe I'll start a thread with it so you can see it there, okay?

It's called Golden Afternoon and I painted it with an underpainting of complements first...

Dyin
09-02-2003, 03:30 PM
cool...like to see the process...thanks!

Mo.
09-02-2003, 06:29 PM
Lovely quickies Eden... I especially like the first one, you are developing a really good style with the pastels. Good for you for joining in this thread.

Mo.:)

vrashton
09-02-2003, 06:33 PM
I've never posted to the weekly sketches before, so I thought I had better start. Here are two. The first was done in 35 min., oil pastel on canson, the 2nd was done in 25 min, again oil pastel on canson.
Val

vrashton
09-02-2003, 06:34 PM
here is the 2nd

vrashton
09-02-2003, 06:35 PM
sorry forgot the picture.

edencompton
09-02-2003, 06:37 PM
Thanks for all the positive replies, everyone! I'm trying to "de-lurk" myself and become a more active member from now on. I've really learned a lot from everyone so far. But, now it's time to actually put it to use -- I'll keep you posted!

Mo.
09-02-2003, 06:43 PM
Welcome Vrashton... two great sketches.... love the first one, that cream bun is making my mouth water.:D.... just a little puzzled as the the white objects in the second one, not sure what they are, maybe adding a touch of colour there would help,..what oil pastels are you using and how long have you been using them?

Eden... glad you are getting hooked ;):D

Mo.:)

Dyin
09-02-2003, 07:11 PM
mmmm....cream puff!!!! Nice stuff!!! Glad you joined in vrashton. Yes, we love our OP details! Sorry all...been doing my quickies in graphite lately...but so much good stuff goin on in here...I'm lurkin out loud!!!

vrashton
09-02-2003, 08:23 PM
Thanks for the comments. Those white things at the bottom are little donuts, they are not quite so white in the painting. The pastels are Holbien, actually I need to buy more so if anyone can recommend others that I should try that would be a big help. I've only done a few oil pastels paintings, mainly I use soft pastel.
Val

Dyin
09-02-2003, 08:55 PM
do you like the Holbeins??? Getting ready to get some...I have Caran d'Ache and Senneliers...you'd be better with the first altho I love the pigments in the second, they are harder to work with...

vrashton
09-02-2003, 09:02 PM
I do like the Holbeins but then they are the only ones I have tried, I wouldn't mind trying new ones just to see the difference.
Val

E-J
09-03-2003, 03:58 AM
Val ... great to see you joining in ... that cream bun is super!

nougat
09-04-2003, 02:37 AM
Lovely landscapes Craig, Eden and Dee. And delicious still lifes Vrashton!

here's mine at last.

oil pastels 30X40 cms approx 1hour. sorry its NOT from life!!!:D

nadine

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Sep-2003/15364-quick_male_nude.jpg

sundiver
09-04-2003, 07:14 AM
Originally posted by vrashton
I do like the Holbeins but then they are the only ones I have tried, I wouldn't mind trying new ones just to see the difference.
Val

I started out with Holbeins and they are still my favorite. I recently got a set of Caran D'Aches and a handful of Sennelliers.
The Sennelliers are the gooiest, Caran Dache the hardest, Holbeins feel the most like soft pastels. I like them all, really. Sennellier has some nice greyed-down greens and olives.

(I like your still lifes, btw. I'm sipping coffee from an identical cup right now!:D Big lineup at the drive-thru this morning.)

Nice to see "new" people in here since I toodled off for the summer. Eden, those are great plein aires. I'm trying to do more of those, too.
Nadine, I like the loose style and the colors in your figure.

vrashton
09-04-2003, 08:16 AM
Nadine I really like the impressionist style of your fiqure. Sundiver, I think i'll see if I can find some Sennelliers to try,( enjoy your Tim's coffee, the line up here is always long too)
Val

Dyin
09-04-2003, 09:56 AM
Val...when I first tried the Senneliers I went crazy but with a little persistence I found I really liked them for certain things...lovely pigments and transparent colors..and yes...some lovely greens

vrashton
09-04-2003, 02:18 PM
I just got back from the art supply store, they didn't have Senneliers so I guess I'll stick with my Holbeins for now.
Val

Dyin
09-04-2003, 03:19 PM
got mine thru Dakota Art pastels...Dick Blick has them too...

Mo.
09-04-2003, 05:43 PM
Originally posted by nougat
Lovely landscapes Craig, Eden and Dee. And delicious still lifes Vrashton!

here's mine at last.

oil pastels 30X40 cms approx 1hour. sorry its NOT from life!!!:D

nadine

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Sep-2003/15364-quick_male_nude.jpg


Whoohooo nice piece of contemporary work Nadine... I like it.!

E-J
09-04-2003, 05:52 PM
Originally posted by Craig Houghton
If anyone wants a challenge -- ketchup.

I couldn't resist your challenge ;)

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Sep-2003/13865-ketchup.jpg

This was 1hr, soft pastels on green Tints paper. I spent so long faffing around with the fabric that I had to race against time to finish the ketchup bottle! Fun though.

E-J
09-04-2003, 05:54 PM
Originally posted by nougat
here's mine at last. oil pastels 30X40 cms approx 1hour. sorry its NOT from life!!!:D

Hey, buns seem to be the theme of the week :D

Mo.
09-04-2003, 06:15 PM
E-J....Love your sauce, you saucy girl.:D....I really intended to rise to the ketchup challenge too, but life got in the way again. :D...maybe tomorrow!... Good one E-J!

vrashton
09-04-2003, 08:27 PM
E-J, really like your ketchup.
Val

Craig Houghton
09-04-2003, 08:43 PM
Originally posted by E-J


I couldn't resist your challenge ;)

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Sep-2003/13865-ketchup.jpg

This was 1hr, soft pastels on green Tints paper. I spent so long faffing around with the fabric that I had to race against time to finish the ketchup bottle! Fun though.

Lol! That's fantastic -- I didn't expect anyone to tackle a heinz bottle, but it's great that you did. Challenge met! :) Looks great, and you've really kept the darks and lights of the bottle interesting with the added warms and cools -- looks great.

The fact that you rendered the folds of the fabric so well makes this look utterly classical -- it's about time a ketchup bottle got the pedestal treatment ;)

-Craig :clap:

gredelin
09-05-2003, 01:30 AM
Hi everyone! Great sketches, I especially love seeing some plein air work! I always think of myself as a plein air person, but in reality it's going on fifteen years since I've actually done it.
Here's a 15-minute sketch from life, hubby napping under a pillow, charcoal and Nupastels. I'll be doing croquis with a live model this fall, so I thought I should get some practice, but I thought I'd wake him if I pulled his clothes off... :D
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Sep-2003/13872-gthjopillow.jpg
/Gunilla

nougat
09-05-2003, 03:02 AM
Thanks for the comments!!!

Great pastel Gredelin!!

Super ketchup E-J - no buns from you tho!! LOL

nadine

vrashton
09-05-2003, 08:40 AM
Gredelin, great sketch, although I doubt your husband would have minded getting his clothes off, afterall what guy wouldn't want to be woke up by a beautiful women ripping his clothes off?
Val

edencompton
09-05-2003, 10:18 AM
Everyone is doing such nice work here -
Nadine, I like the style of your OP - it kind of reminds me of a woodcut. E- J - Nice Sketchup, as Craig put it.
Graedelin - Congratulations on getting your husband to sit still for 15 minutes. My husband moves constantly when I try to sketch him -- He says he's keeping me on my toes.

I have kept to my goal of sketching from life everyday, so far. Unfortunately, I was in the cool Northeast when I made that commitment. I forgot about the 90 degree heat, 90% humidity, mosquitoes and fast moving light of the Tropics!

Anyway, here is my sketch from yesterday. 30 minutes outside and another 30 minutes in the studio. (I forgot the bug spray -- the no-see-ums drove me inside):

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Sep-2003/7443-AdderHouse.jpg

This is 8 x 10 on Wallis paper, so I could definitely put more layers on. Should I leave as is or try to finish it out?

Deborah Secor
09-05-2003, 10:47 AM
Eden, it's wonderful! I love the way I can see through to the trees beyond. Up to the beginning of the roofline I would leave it. The only thing that sort of jumps is the shadow and tree over the roof, which seem a bit sketchy. Maybe it's the color of the shadow that isn't resolved yet. I vote for a smidgen more work on this one, but not too much.

One thing I notice is the blue tape you've used, showing along one edge--if I'm correct in what I see. In my experience this tape makes color decisions more difficult, in that it puts a "blue mat" around the painting. Try covering it up and see what an effect it has!

Wow, you are really sticking with it on sketching every day. no-see-ums would drive me mad in no time.... I'd be sketching the ketchup bottle instead!

Oh, gee, my hubby will sleep for me any time. Otherwise he hates me sketching him! LOL Love your drawing gredelin!

Craig Houghton
09-05-2003, 12:56 PM
Originally posted by edencompton
I have kept to my goal of sketching from life everyday, so far. Unfortunately, I was in the cool Northeast when I made that commitment. I forgot about the 90 degree heat, 90% humidity, mosquitoes and fast moving light of the Tropics!

Anyway, here is my sketch from yesterday. 30 minutes outside and another 30 minutes in the studio. (I forgot the bug spray -- the no-see-ums drove me inside):

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Sep-2003/7443-AdderHouse.jpg


That's really a well-spent hour. :) It's great as is. Your pastel strokes really do a fantastic job of describing each particular subjects -- the rocks are a great example of this. I especially love the way you have the doors lined up. It looks like an image in an image in an image. Very cool! (btw, regarding the commitment, well done!)

I should stop playing with oily paint and pull back out my pastel shelves now :)

-Craig

Dark_Shades
09-06-2003, 06:03 AM
an hour worked from My Life ......
can I have C&C please

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Sep-2003/12116-DriftAway.jpg

angeline
09-06-2003, 06:07 AM
Wow great work comming in here!
Must say Dawn I just love that sunset........love them anyway!
You could have a C&C if i knew what it was!

Dark_Shades
09-06-2003, 06:09 AM
lol Angeline.... you gave me one C already....... Comment & Critique :D

E-J
09-06-2003, 08:40 AM
Ironic that your name's Dawn when you're painting Sunsets :D

This is a beauty! The clouds really do look illuminated. I love the palette you've used.

You asked for C&C ... I would sugggest that the reflection of the middle, tallest tree needs to be moved a touch to the right.

Only an hour. Dawn mate, you are getting too good.

Dark_Shades
09-06-2003, 09:19 AM
lol EJ :) ....... thanks... ..... will do......

...... question: ....... lol, I know Im an amateur...... but does this look amateurish? ......... to be honest Im never sure of anything I do is 'any good'

edencompton
09-06-2003, 09:34 AM
Dawn -- Great sunset! I really like the colors and the reflections.

Craig - Thanks for the nice comments!

Deborah -- You're right about the shadows - meant to go back to them. It never occured to me that the blue tape would make a difference - thanks for the heads up. Will go buy white tape.

Craig Houghton
09-06-2003, 10:14 AM
Originally posted by Dark_Shades
an hour worked from My Life ......
can I have C&C please

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Sep-2003/12116-DriftAway.jpg

This is terrific. THe clouds are especially incredible. That cumulus stack is just begging to be added to the Painting Clouds in Pastel project :D

As for the other 'C,' I find the edges on the shore edge closest to us to be too soft and blended across their length. Things look great though, and in no time at all -- really wonderful. I still find it seriously difficult to do anything even half as good as my regular stuff when it's plein aire.

-Craig

Dark_Shades
09-06-2003, 04:36 PM
lol, thanks Craig :) ...... I'll post it there now ....... been working on another.... and struggling with it..... so will post that one too, as a WIP :D

vrashton
09-07-2003, 02:26 PM
Dark Shades- amateurish? definately not, those clouds are great.
Val

sundiver
09-07-2003, 08:22 PM
Wonderful clouds, ketchups, husbands, et al! :D
(At least, as far as I can tell: when I left for the weekend, my monitor was showing mostly olive green- now it's mostly neon pink and blue!... works well with the sunsets......)
Nice to see you in here, Gunilla. I imagine you are settled back in after your big move .
I had a plein aire scanned to post but will wait till tomorrow.

nougat
09-09-2003, 02:55 PM
These are all great!!

Dawn you should see my (horrible) clouds that I'm putting in Craig's project...

You SHOULD see them - so here they are!!!:D
nadine
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/09-Sep-2003/15364-clouds.jpg