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frenchchick
04-10-2013, 10:15 AM
Hi I've just introduced myself on "new members" and in soft pastel talk.


I was wondering if I could have C & C on a couple of pictures I have tried out. I am still very much practicing, but enjoying every learning curve!


After starting out with hard pastels last winter, (it has been winter projects only because of busy schedule the rest of the year) I am now using Rembrandts, Rowneys, and slowly building up a collection of Senneliers mmmm I love 'em!


I have done a sunflower picture which was on the reference library here and also the Zinnias (which I went a bit wrong with because I tried to put a wax pastel base under it on one side (ooops!) and also just finished a white tulip painting (which I think I want to add another contrasting colour to the background, but not sure)


please be gentle
Thank you :heart:
PS (I am rubbish photographer, the flash has probably brought them out warts and all LOL!)

al84
04-10-2013, 10:52 AM
liking the sunflower pic :)

water girl
04-10-2013, 12:16 PM
I agree with al84. The sunflowers are wonderful. Don't be afraid of the darks. I see that you've used more darks in the daisy picture. Nice work. I'll be watching for new posts.

T Porter
04-10-2013, 12:38 PM
Your paintings are well done with proportions and detail, but I think you might want to make more of a difference between the values that you choose. To make the painting’s focal point come forward and be the center of attention you will want to have a higher contrast between values.

Your second painting has the greatest contrast of values between the background and the vase and flowers, and that makes the subject matter standout. On the second painting try altering the red fuzzy, foxtail looking foliage on the right side of the painting lighter in value and make the two on the left side of the painting darker in value. This should bring them forward.

frenchchick
04-10-2013, 01:12 PM
Thank you for your comments so far, they are encouraging (sigh of relief!)

I appreciate all your wisdom, I really do. I am enjoying it sooo much and really want to improve. When I go to the art shop with my friend, we joke that we are going to go and "lick" pastels and other pretty things! (my friend is into sewing and jewellery etc)

I will try that with the daisies and see how it goes, I understand what you are saying. That's what I was thinking about the tulips, do you think I should add another colour in the background to bring out the subject? A bit of purple keeps leaping to mind, what do you think?

Thanks again :)

T Porter
04-10-2013, 02:58 PM
I will try that with the daisies and see how it goes, I understand what you are saying. That's what I was thinking about the tulips, do you think I should add another colour in the background to bring out the subject? A bit of purple keeps leaping to mind, what do you think?

Thanks again :)

Purple is the compliment color to yellow, which could create a dynamic back ground, so yeah give it a try.

frenchchick
04-10-2013, 03:34 PM
Thanks, I'll see how I get on :crossfingers:

Colorix
04-10-2013, 04:37 PM
Hello and welcome! Lovely flowers! When you get comments, they may vary a bit, as what we see on our computer screens is a bit different from each other, and different from what you see on your paintings. I have two computers, and one has nice colours, but the other one shows every picture as a bit more blue than it really is.

I agree with the others who commented. You do very fine with your drawing, and the aspect I too would recommend you to look into is the range of tonal value. The orange flowers (in the vase with flower decor) is the painting that works best. I feel I could hold the vase in my hands, it looks so three dimensional. And the range of values in that painting is fine! The glass vase is believable too, you really have an eye for reflections.

allydoodle
04-10-2013, 06:13 PM
Beautiful work! You've received excellent advice, values are so important in painting, you can control so much by adjusting darks/lights. Also remember warms/cools, incorporating both value and temperature into a painting brings things alive. I'm looking forward to seeing more of your paintings!

frenchchick
04-11-2013, 05:09 AM
Thanks again. The learning curve is one of the parts I love too. I see more and more how the values make such a big difference. I also value the comment on the drawings, because that is one part I like to get right and I pride in getting right.

The advice on here is great, because the standard is so high and between everyone so much experience. It means a lot to hear comments so I can move onwards and hopefully upwards in my new found hobby which you wouldn't believe what it has done for me since I had to stop a lot of my work (the sense of feeling useless and not being proactive in anything). Don't get the violins out, it's just a natural stage I suppose when you are used to running round helping other people and then your body says you have to stop but your head is still going!

Thanks again, any more comments are welcome, I am hoping to sit down this afternoon and tweek a little, then I am going to learn from it and move on.:)

al84
04-11-2013, 05:32 AM
Whats ya next painting gonna be

frenchchick
04-11-2013, 05:39 AM
I want to try the iris that's on April's spotlight to do more practice on flowers, but then I want to try something like a nice scene with a coffee pot and cups etc. Last winter I did the Swans which were on the spotlight in hard pastels and also the coloured glass bottles. I also did a painting from a photo we took when we were in the South of France which was a scene over the rooftops in moonlight. I'm not getting on very well with scenery I think I prefer still life.
How is your next project coming?

al84
04-11-2013, 06:04 AM
i dont do much still life.im also a newbie im only on me 4th pastel painting.but im addicted! got meself a easel other day and my new pastels have just came through the post too today unison portrait pastels :) the start of me new painting is in the studio gallery

britgirl
04-11-2013, 07:09 AM
Very nice work! The drawing is very good...well done.
Everyone here has already given you lots of wonderful advice, and I can think of nothing more to add in that direction :) All I can say is, just keep painting...I'd love to see more.

frenchchick
04-11-2013, 08:56 AM
Okay, I've tweeked these 2, but now I'm going to learn and move on!

Thanks for all your advice, it has been very helpful.

al84
04-11-2013, 09:02 AM
what pastels you using?

frenchchick
04-11-2013, 12:02 PM
I'm using rembrandts, rowneys and a couple of senneliers thrown in. I'm slowly building up my colour palette with senneliers each time I go into the city.
I started with hard pastels, tried wax and oil as well, but since turning to soft pastels this winter I'm hooked even more!

Which type are you starting with? You said the brand but my knowledge is still a bit limited in the world of pastels.

al84
04-11-2013, 12:28 PM
im using faber castell and today i got unison portrait set whic need to test out yet they will go on top.fabers r hardy but i been getting on ok with em.i think i gonna get some rembrandt's the price aint so bad on them.and alot of people use em

DAK723
04-11-2013, 01:08 PM
These are very nice paintings and I think your revisions have definitely been positive! Your sunflower and zinnia paintings have some wonderful movements in the flowers and leaves! They don't look at all like the paintings of a beginner. The change in background has definitely made the tulip painting more dynamic! It is held back a little bit by a more symmetrical, static composition, but sometimes we can't really do too much to change the reference that we are working with. One thing that works really well in your zinnia painting is the variation and softness of the line at the back edge of the table. Perhaps some softening of the line in the tulip painting may add a bit more interest! Just a thought.

Very nice work! Glad you have joined us!

Don

Mado
04-11-2013, 02:58 PM
Your drawings are beautiful and the tulips really pop now !

aolaranora
04-11-2013, 05:14 PM
I like them all. My only suggestion will be - when next time You paint something like Your last painting with white tulips, it will look even better, if line of water in a vase and line of table what vase is sits on will not will not be so close to each other... I personally would put the table level about an inch below the water level.
I wouldn't change anything in this painting, it is something to watch for in the future.
I do like the shift of darks and light is background. Looks nice!

frenchchick
04-12-2013, 03:11 AM
Thank you. All this C & C is going in, it will be very useful. I will learn also to study my subject photo before I start with the outline next time and see what I can change to make it better. That obviously will come with time and experience, which is why it is great to get advice from you guys.

My background is that I used to do pencil and coloured pencil drawings, but we are talking GCSE level over 25 years ago at school! A lot of what I learnt has stayed with me though.

Then last winter with time on my hands in cold, rural France, I decided I would like to take pastels up, found this website for hints and tips, then tried a couple of the Spotlights in hard pastels and a holiday photo of my own. I enjoyed it so vowed to start again this winter, and bought myself some soft pastels ready. These are the 3 pictures on this thread are what I tackled this winter with the new soft pastels.

Thanks again everyone, I've been looking at your work and sometimes it takes my breath away what can be achieved with pastels. :clap:

Trier
04-12-2013, 12:57 PM
Very nice paintings and it is a shame that the use of flash for photos is degrading them.

Just as a tip, if you don't mind, try a steady support for the camera, square up the painting in the viewfinder and use the timer function without flash.

Regards,
Trier

sketchZ1ol
04-12-2013, 03:18 PM
hello
good posts coming in . :)

the flowers in each painting have great character and , imo , are okay without the vases , tables , etc.
- just the flowers and background .

have you tried still life with just objects ?

sounds like your growing collection of pastels is a good selection . :)

Ed

frenchchick
04-12-2013, 04:24 PM
hello
good posts coming in . :)

the flowers in each painting have great character and , imo , are okay without the vases , tables , etc.
- just the flowers and background .

have you tried still life with just objects ?

sounds like your growing collection of pastels is a good selection . :)

Ed
I used to always do objects, it's the first time I've tried flowers, I suppose that's why I kept on a role practicing them. I want to try the iris in April's Spotlight next, then I have a reference of a copper coffee pot, sugar bowl and milk jug I want to try (no flowers), so I will see how I get on.

frenchchick
04-12-2013, 04:28 PM
Very nice paintings and it is a shame that the use of flash for photos is degrading them.

Just as a tip, if you don't mind, try a steady support for the camera, square up the painting in the viewfinder and use the timer function without flash.

Regards,
Trier

I will ask hubby who is the camera expert about that last bit! Thank you, this thread might improve my camera knowledge too.