View Full Version : Oil Pastel Monthly Challenge for November 2013

11-01-2013, 07:29 AM
Hi everyone, my name is Mary and I'll be hosting the Oil Pastel Monthly Challenge for November 2013.

The 'challenge' is for ALL abilities and you can experiment with new techniques, just sketch or leap out of your comfort zone and try an unfamiliar subject. It's entirely up to you as long as 75% of your painting is completed with oil pastels.

You're free to post as you go, even if a 'WIP' to show us your process, which we love to see, or if you get stuck and need help and advice. We are all friendly and happy to help. We don't bite!

When you post your finished piece it's really useful if you state

The type of support you used including any surface prep,
the finished size of your painting or sketch,
the brand of Oil Pastels used and whether you used anything under the OP as an underpainting or wash. Other mediums may be used to compliment, but the work must be primarily Oil Pastels. It's not mandatory, we are just a nosey bunch.

Looking forward to having some fun with this challenge, can't wait to see the fabulous oil pastels. With that here are the photographs I've selected for this month.

First up is a Persian kitten, so darn cute - from WC IRL taken by Lady Carol:


Next is a Rooster got to love the colors - from WC IRL taken by McCloud:

Here comes a violin to practice wood grain, from WC IRL taken by emilymbongoriginals:

Then we have a still life for whites and Tai Eggplant - from WC IRL:

Our next comes from a close-up of stone building - WC IRL taken by Rosequeen:

Here is ode to Fall, close-up of a leave - WC IRL taken by lady wolf1:

Then a landscape - WC IRL:

Then a seascape - WC IRL taken by Galloping Carrot:

Then a mushroom - WC IRL taken by Blackhorse:

And finally we have a jellyfish - WC IRL taken by wthrlady:

Hope we get a lot of takers for this month's challenge, I'm excited to be the host - let's have a lot of fun!

11-01-2013, 09:22 AM
A very nice variety to choose from.

11-01-2013, 01:05 PM
Thanks Christel, hopefully enough variety for everyone to be able to select form.

11-01-2013, 02:00 PM
Great selection Mary!

I may try more than one this month, but I'll start with the rooster. I'm going to work a little bigger this time. I did a graphite sketch while eating lunch. I'll transfer it tomorrow and start in color. I like to set my sketches aside overnight and come back to do corrections. :)

11-01-2013, 04:14 PM
Hi DP - thanks! I'm excited to see what photographs you'll be tackling - have fun! Looking forward to your posts.

11-02-2013, 05:39 AM
I'm going with the violin or the vase still lifes. That rooster probably became 'still' when Farmer McCloud walked by with a hatchet. :D

Pat Isaac
11-02-2013, 08:47 AM
Thanks for hosting this month, Mary.....Awesome pictures, I could do almost all of them....


11-02-2013, 01:21 PM
Thanks TVX, hope to see some of your work this month.

Thanks Pat, maybe some would be nice for a Spring show at your studio?

11-02-2013, 09:14 PM
There are such wonderful choices this month, two of which work with my theme for the exhibit... (All Creatures great and small) I just hope all of this icky sickness is gone.

11-03-2013, 10:32 AM
Thanks Donna - looking forward to seeing your paintings. Hope you feel better!

Pat Isaac
11-03-2013, 02:04 PM
We do have a Spring Show, so I am going to save some of these.


11-04-2013, 03:45 AM
Here are some WIP captures so far. C&C welcomed and appreciated. The beak got a little muddy, but I think I can correct it.




11-04-2013, 05:48 AM
Great start spin, I look forward to more. What brand of ops are you using? What size is it?

11-04-2013, 06:43 AM
This looks great so far. Looking forward to the final one.

11-04-2013, 07:58 AM

I'm using Mungyo and some student grade holbeins + some prisma cp for the detailled line work. Its 12x18 on Strathmore Colored Art Paper. The paper choice was a bad one; it grabs the cp just fine, but the op are just sliding over it and not biting into the tooth.

I chose the cheaper paper because I figured this would just be a practice for juxtaposing and blending colors. Now, its becoming a bit of a challenge to work. I'll let it play out and try to learn a few things... First lesson learned is to set this paper aside for CP only :)

11-04-2013, 08:08 AM
Hi DP, love your start! Let the beak set a bit and you'll be able to apply OPs over it, or you can scrap off with a razor blade and start again. I like the Rooster head and I can see the feathers are going to be gorgeous - very nice start and looking forward to seeing your progress.

Student grade Holbeins and Mungyo OPs are tough to get to spread on that paper because there is little to no tooth for the OPs to grab. Senneliers work the best on this paper. So it takes a bit more effort to move it around. A tortilium does help a lot in this case, clay shapers will just slide the OPs around. I've been working on a 12 x 9 for ages and it discourages me so that I'm constantly putting it down - if I finish it my Senneliers will be called on to do the job.

11-04-2013, 08:56 AM
Thx Mary.

The annual bonus check came in, so I am treating myself to a new roof and a set of Senneliers :) They should arrive some time this week. I also ordered a pack of UArt 600 pastel paper that I've been itching to try out.

I decided that if I really want to learn this, I'll have to buy the right materials. I'm also reminding myself that this is OP #4, compared to many years of graphite experience and a 10 year hiatus. It will take some time and many failures before I get some confidence.

Your tips are much appreciated. Please keep them coming.

Pat Isaac
11-04-2013, 09:07 AM
This is looking just great so far. Aninteresting color paper that you chose and it is working well. Yes, that paper doesn't have much tooth, good for you to carry on.


11-04-2013, 02:33 PM
Some more progress from my lunch break. This is transitioning from a painting to a sketch, but it gave me a chance to play up the contrasts and played down the details.


Pat Isaac
11-04-2013, 02:54 PM
looking good and enjoying the process.


11-04-2013, 04:54 PM
Hi DP, like work - it's coming along. Don't be afraid to play up the higher and lower value ranges on the feathers - will make the lighter ones stand out and the darker ones recede so that you have a bit more texture and depth to the feathers. This is very nice and I'm really looking forward to your progress.

Yeah!! So happy to hear about your new Senneliers, you'll love them. A little different animal than the cheaper artist quality, as you'll have them very-very creamy and will cause you to think how you apply the OPs. But you'll find them a wonderful brand to paint with. Here's to you on stocking up on supplies, I just got an order in of Senneliers and love some of the new colors.

11-04-2013, 06:32 PM
DP, the Senneliers are my favorite! In the last piece I did, a number of months back, I used q-tips to push the color around.

I had my son pick from challenge pictures from various medium forums here on WC for his art assignment (we've fall behind in homeschool because of me getting sick and it being the busiest time of the year for me work-wise), and he chose the jellyfish. Because I had to go to sleep he got lazy on the piece. I will take a picture of it. We are going to re-do it, and this time I will try to provide more of a helping hand through the stages (sketch, picking man colors, background, block-in, detail, highlights, and creating his art signature). He pulled a fast one on Daddy, but I know he can do so much better. :heart:

11-04-2013, 07:43 PM
DP, the rooster comb looks so 3D!! Nice job.

Valiant, hope you will feel better soon.

Mary, thank you for the gorgeous photos. I will definitely do more than one.

Gallery oil pastel on 8.5 x 11 inch black cardstock with black pastel ground.


11-04-2013, 10:31 PM
Hi TVX, nice to see you again - sorry you haven't been feeling well. Looks like you are gearing up to join us in one of the challenges - would be nice. And of course, your son is welcomed -just don't go to hard on him.

Sandra, thanks! Creative is the word here - I really your interpretation of the Persian kitten. Black background perfect for the line sketching, those green eyes are fabulous and against the red/white/pink/green they just pop! Beautiful form for the cats head, nice and fluffy too!

11-04-2013, 11:50 PM
Sandra, those kitten's eyes are popping out. Your color combination is great.

11-05-2013, 11:11 PM
Thank you, Mary, Christel. It was fun doing its eyes.

Mungyo oil pastel
Utrecht Oatmeal sketchbook 9x12 inch


11-05-2013, 11:44 PM
This looks good. I like the addition of purple to your blend of orange.

11-06-2013, 08:13 AM
Like your mushrooms Sandra, real nice form and beautiful color (touch of compliment is excellent). Your shadows and highlights work nicely on this piece. You used the low values very effectively.

11-06-2013, 06:44 PM
Thai-Eggplants Still Life

Oil Pastel, 5x7
Mi-Teintes Pastel Black Paper

Nearly all Senneliers and Holbeins on this painting. I was taking the picture in a nearly dark room didn't realize the sun was setting, so sorry about not having clearer colors. There is very little white used in this piece actually light colors are light grey, cream and yellow-grey..

Was a good exercise - I liked the black pastel paper for this one. All C&C welcomed.


11-06-2013, 11:08 PM
A beautiful stillife. The light is reflected very well.

11-06-2013, 11:35 PM
The jellyfish, A4, blue pastelboard.

11-07-2013, 10:36 AM
Beautiful Christel - light, free-flowing and delicate in its natural environment. Very nice flow of lines and coloring.

Pat Isaac
11-07-2013, 10:56 AM
Nicely done, Christel. Great color and movement.


11-07-2013, 11:21 AM
Thanks Mary and Pat.

11-07-2013, 01:15 PM
I updated the photograph of my Thai Eggplant Still Life.

Yesterday I took the photograph at dusk which totally altered the colors in the image. Here is my latest photograph taken today in daylight and it looks much closer to the painting in real life.

Oil pastel, 5x7


Pat Isaac
11-07-2013, 02:07 PM
I LOVE this still life and you have a very nice start, Mary.


11-07-2013, 03:02 PM
DP, your rooster's coming on gorgeous! Great idea to use a red surface for him. Magnificent fellow!

Sandra, wow, bright-eyed kitten and beautiful electric mushrooms.

Mary, gorgeous still life with Thai eggplants. The second photo is much better, it's a fantastic painting.

Tuscanny, wow, love your jellyfish and the gradated background only makes them even more dramatic.

Of course I might go for the kitten if I do any of them, it's a kitten. You had to include an underaged feline for me! Thank you! Great photos for this batch. I hope I can do at least one.

Oh what the heck, kitten sketch done on impulse!

"I'm too precious for my fur"
7" x 10"
Oil pastel on Stillman & Birn Beta journal
photo reference by Lady_Carol

11-07-2013, 03:27 PM
Dp, wonderful update,

Sandra, I always look forward to seeing your vibrant art

Mary, good job on the still life, the reflections are excellent,

Tuscanny, love the sense of motion and softness.

I tried the kitten and ended up ripping it up. I will restart it as soon as I finish with my Christmas card design. I am have to have it to the printer by Monday!

11-07-2013, 03:28 PM
Cute kitten Sketch Robert :)

11-07-2013, 04:42 PM
Wow! Those are all so gorgeous and so creative!

Sandra - Those eyes! Beautiful!

Robert - Your title and ingredient list had me laughing out loud! :lol:

Mary - I stepped outside my comfort zone and tried painting an animal; it is a cat, but it wasn't from your photo, so not sure if that is acceptable for this challenge?

11-07-2013, 05:43 PM
Thank you Pat, Robert, Donna and Spydersmom for your comments on Thai-Eggplant Still Life - Indigo was my favorite go to for this piece.

Hi Robert, wonderful kitten. Here is the deal, as soon as I saw the Persian I thought of you - so I'm thrilled that you painted her. Isn't she the cutest! Love your Persian Kitty - nice, fluffy and love those gorgeous eyes and her precious face.

Hey Spydersmom I say go right ahead and post your cat - we'd love to see it. It's close enough for the challenge. Looking forward to seeing it!

11-07-2013, 07:13 PM
Hey Spydersmom I say go right ahead and post your cat - we'd love to see it. It's close enough for the challenge. Looking forward to seeing it! After seeing all the incredible paintings y'all have done, I'm a little - no, scratch that - a LOT nervous about posting this, but here is my attempt at a kitty. I know there are a lot of issues, especially with the symmetry, texture and coloring (values?), but hopefully with practice, that will improve. :crossfingers:

Baby Girl
Mungyo Gallery Artists' Soft Oil Pastels on Strathmore pastel paper, 6" x 9" (half page)

11-07-2013, 11:09 PM
Mary, this photo is really showing off the fruit and jug beautifully.
Robert your underaged feline is just too cute.
Tammy, very good for that size. Those eyes are awesome.

11-08-2013, 03:33 AM
Thanks Donna and Robert.

I was hoping to have finished this by now, but I have another business trip next week and the past few days have been like cramming for final exams.

Mary -- The Senniliers came in, and you are right, they are going to change the way I think about OP. I'm planning another portrait from a really nice RIL image, and did a graphite study over lunch yesterday. I'm going to take my time on this one and try to capture the method along the way.

11-08-2013, 08:45 AM
Tammy, stunning eyes there. If the eyes are any indication of where you're heading with the oil pastels, then we're in great company here. :wave:

11-08-2013, 09:41 AM
Thanks everyone for your comments on Thai Eggplants Still Life - appreciate it!

DP, you're going to love Senneliers - wonderful to lay on top of harder oil pastels (they drag really well for texture even though they are buttery soft), wonderful for water scenes and I love them with pastel papers.

Tammy (spydersmom), thanks for joining in and posting your cat painting. Well for a first you made a real nice piece here, such a sweet face. The eyes definitely have it - beautiful colors and a nice glassy appearance to them. The fur is fluffy and with good coloring.

A couple of suggestions for the fur:
- if you want some depth to the fur, consider laying in a bit of darker OPs (of the same coloring) here and there;
- you can make thin lines for the wiskers and outer delicate fine fur hairs a couple of ways either with a color or clay shaper - they let you pull the OPs toward a tight corner or pull the OPs out as a thin line, or you can use a Kemper Wiper tool to do the same.
- colored pastel pencils (soft - prisma) with a really sharp point will also let you make some fine detailed lines.

Fantastic first and looking forward to many more. I love my mungyo soft oil pastels, a wonderful broad-spectrum of colors.

11-08-2013, 11:34 AM
I Am enjoying the choice of photos for this month so much that I decided to do another one. A3 on canson sketch paper.

Pat Isaac
11-08-2013, 02:03 PM
Lovely, Christel. Nice work on the bricks and lacy greens.
They are great photos and this is one of my favorites.


11-09-2013, 09:57 AM
Oh my beautiful work on the wall Christel - really like your results. Nice stone work, with the various stone colors and shading. Beautiful details on the window grate, and lovely greenery (just specs of details letting the viewer fill in the rest).

You're are really progressing so quickly with OPs, wonderful to see your works!

11-09-2013, 11:38 AM
Thank you Pat and Mary.

11-09-2013, 03:04 PM
Thanks for the comments everyone! Venus has beautiful eyes and is such a willing subject - she just happily lies on her rug and watches me paint her. :)

Thanks so much for the advice on the fur too - I did pick up the complete set of Mungyo Artist Soft Oil Pastels (with a wider range of darks and lights) at Art of the Carolinas this weekend, along with some Colourshaper blending tools, so when I combine those with the great advice, I hope to start improving soon!

Christel - That wall is just stunning, and transports me to another time and place. I love it!

11-09-2013, 03:57 PM
Hi Tammy, glad to hear of your new supplies - you are going to love them! Looking forward to new OP paintings from you.

11-09-2013, 11:28 PM
Hi Tammy. Thanks for the comment. Also looking forward to seeing what you can do with your new ops.

11-12-2013, 08:29 PM
Mary, this is an awesome picture selection! Thank you!
I liked all the pictures posted, great job everyone.
Christel, love the wall picture- the change in shading and greens around the lantern makes it even better than original!
Robert, your kitties are so good, I'm amazed how you could capture the likeness and texture in so few strokes. :)

11-12-2013, 08:47 PM
Here is my WIP of the violin (crop lengthwise is accidental, but decided to stick to it anyway). What do you think about the colors so far? Any suggestions?

I have a specific question as well: how to make wood grain lines? I have an idea to do thin lines with something like palette knife using a ruler and then fill them in with the other color. Will this work? If doing it this way then when filling the color do I fill with just one color or two- bright and dark to make it look like 3D line?

What do YOU usually do for drawing wood grain?


Mostly Mungyo artists soft OP (36 set), with a few additional colors like Umber, Sienna, Sepia, etc from Cray-Pas Expressionists.
9x12 Canson XL sheet covered with 1 layer of clear gesso.

11-13-2013, 08:42 AM
Hi os2013, great start to your violin - wonderful lines and rich wood color. This is will beautiful when you are done.

A suggestion about the far-left side of the violin, you might want to consider backing off the darkest darks because they are giving the impression of a downward slope.

I have a specific question as well: how to make wood grain lines? I have an idea to do thin lines with something like palette knife using a ruler and then fill them in with the other color. Will this work? If doing it this way then when filling the color do I fill with just one color or two- bright and dark to make it look like 3D line?

Depends on what you want as the ultimate style and look, hyper-realism or a level of realism that allows the viewer to fill in some of the detail. What do you want to emphasize more: richness of wood or the grain.

At times I have used my fingers to lay in wood grain and other times I have very lightly used my clay shaper or Kemper Wipe-Out Tool to show a few strategically placed lines.

This morning I went through about 700 violin paintings in the style of realism (not hyper-realism) and here are my findings.
- Few artists made the violins totally smooth, I wasn't impressed by the look it was rather flat.
- Most used the wood colors and highlights to give the impression of wood grains. Few were successful and others, had they worked it a little bit more by including a few strategically placed lines would have enhanced the look tremendously.

Examining your image, I have a few suggestions and before I start let me just say you have a gorgeous feel to the wood already.

- OS2013 let the wood speak to you. Look closely and you can see grain patterns already that have emerged - see copy of your image I encircled a couple of patterns, these are the hints of grain that I'm referring too. Enhance these slightly, enough to give the impression of wood grain - notice that the areas I circled are only slightly different in color and value (which is perfect).

- My personal opinion is if you use a palette knife or other tool to create a line and then fill it in, it would emphasize the grain to much and take away from the rich-luster you're building in the wood.

- A very few lines is all you need and you don't need to run them down the whole length of the violin, the hint of lines you already have are a good length.

Hope this helps.


11-13-2013, 12:15 PM
Mary, thank you very much! I really appreciate your detailed description and analysis. Will try as you suggested

Pat Isaac
11-13-2013, 01:23 PM
I think you have done a beautiful job with the color of the violin and the drawing. Right now the dark doesn't bother me. As for the would grain, I would keep it very discreet, maybe a few very thin darker lines and then a lighter one beside it. You can make the darker lines with an oil pencil ( Lyras, Faber Castell, Pablos.)


11-13-2013, 08:18 PM
Mary, I did some changes to the wood grain as you suggested. Ended up using fingers for distributing color and defining lines. What do you think?


11-13-2013, 08:45 PM
Thank you Pat!

11-13-2013, 10:46 PM
Hi os2013, the luster of the wood is really coming along - it will be beautiful when you're done.

I can see the grains you worked into the wood, you might want to emphasize a few distinct but very fine lines (very straight lines though) - perhaps using brown (reddish-brown or orange-brown) prisma colored pencils that have a really sharp tip. You might want to wait until you've finished with the rest of the guitar this way you can see what color would be best, how many and wear. If you decided to make any lines be sure they are faint and don't detract from the gorgeous wood tones you've made.

How do you feel about it?

11-13-2013, 11:57 PM
Mary, thanks for suggestions about colors. I used vandyke brown and venetian red for lines today, will add some orange. I do like working on it so far. However, as usual I find that this subject is more difficult than I initially thought :)
Also, what do you think about color and value of the lower left corner? I feel it is off a bit, but making it lighter does not feel right either.

11-14-2013, 07:17 AM
Hi os2013, those colors are working beautifully great choices. Go a little light on the orange though it could take away a bit of the richness. It might be difficult, but this painting is going to be gorgeous.

You are working the wood grain like I do ocean water and at some point in the process you feel the smoothness develop under your fingers when spreading the OPs - don't you love it?

I agree with you about the lower-left and perhaps you should go at it once you're done with the rest of the painting. The perspective of what you're trying to achieve there will become more evident.

Pat Isaac
11-14-2013, 08:58 AM
The wood grain is looking good as is the beautiful color of the wood. The wood grain is not hugely apparent in the wood of this violin so go slowly.
I agree with Mary about waiting on the dark in the lower left corner.


11-15-2013, 07:26 AM
I did the rooster on Canson paper, Mungyo oil pastel .9x11.5in.:cat: http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/15-Nov-2013/1111142-image.jpg

11-15-2013, 07:34 AM
Jiemin, I like your rooster with the red and orange shades. I see you also use Canson paper. I am only now beginning to take note of what side I use to draw on.

11-15-2013, 08:23 AM
Hi Jiemin - nice to see you and so happy you joined in! As usual your wonderful loose style suits the Rooster so well, with the ease of fluid lines and flowing colors. Your values are beautifully placed to give the feathers depth - love the poof of tail feathers! Rooster with personality plus ~

11-15-2013, 10:04 AM
Thanks all.
I bought two books of Canson pastel paper,one is 9x12in,one is 12x16in; 24 sheets for each one. Recently I bought one Strathmore Pastel paper book , 9x12in.,24 sheets also, this one works even better than Canson, but not hard than Canson. Sofar, I did find Strathmore has bigger size in my local.

11-15-2013, 08:24 PM
Thanks for comments everyone.

Mary, the jar in your still life stole the show. Great curvature and reflection.

Robert, what a funny title to the painting and love the minimal strokes to depict its fur.

Tammy, such softness!! Such pleading eyes!! It reminds me of the greeting cards of the 70's.

Christel, your jellyfish has great colors and such details in the window scene!! I like them both.

OS, the wood on the violin looks so incredibly real already! :clap:

Jiemen, another striking piece from you and it has all the perfect combination of color and focus on a bit of the eye and the feathers. The foliage looks so well hidden too.

My very brief attempt at the violin. I had to sketch something real quick to put in a notecard for someone.

Mungyo oil pastel
Classic black sketchbook 5x7 inch


11-15-2013, 11:18 PM
Sandra, your painting looks so good! I like the loose style. :thumbsup:
It seems my painting has been changed again!

11-15-2013, 11:24 PM
Thanks Sandra. Very neat little sketch of the violin. It really works well on the black background.

Pat Isaac
11-16-2013, 09:04 AM
Nice sketch of the violin and the black or maybe dark brown paper works well.


11-16-2013, 12:15 PM
Thanks Sandra!

Sandra beautiful violin - those lines and colors are beautiful against the black paper.

Jiemin, I noticed that your rooster has been replaced with your old-rusted truck?

11-16-2013, 01:55 PM
Hi everyone,

A quick sketch of the white jug.

Comments are welcome.


11-16-2013, 07:04 PM
Lovely still life Doobi. nice form to the eggplants and jar. I like your color choices they work well with this painting.

Only suggestion would be to smear the oil pastel reflection on the table down towards bottom and then make some lines going across (smear downward and then across) that allows the reflection coming down and lines going across the table). Does that make sense to you?

11-17-2013, 12:06 AM
Nice sketch Doobi.

Pat Isaac
11-17-2013, 08:11 AM
Yes, the color choices work well and I agree with Mary about the reflection.


11-17-2013, 10:51 AM
Thanks Mary , Pat and Tuscany. Mary thanks for the suggestion. You have such a good observation. You have posted so many beautiful photos this month. Have a nice day!

11-17-2013, 02:44 PM
Hi all,

I tried to sketch the cute kitty too but it turned out a scary one...any tips? Do I need to make the eyes shorter?


11-17-2013, 03:05 PM
Hi Doobi, there are some good aspects of your painting - nice body form, good use of colors and values.

I don't know what type of surface you used, but if it is paper you can easily use a razor blade to scrape off areas that need re-work. Just be careful that you don't scrape too hard or deep or you'll end up tearing the paper.

You might want to consider making the eyes and mouth smaller(almost half the size of that they are so they are more in scale for the size of a kitten.

For the fur - if you look at the photograph examine the texture, fluffiness, colors and depth, you'll want to show some of this in your painting. You may want to blur or blend most of the creamy/white - the blurring will give it a soft appearance. After you blend the fur add some darks, very thin lines to show depth of hairs in fur and don't be afraid to add some mid-value ranges as well. Once you add the darks and mid-tones take a clay or color shaper, or use the point or edge of a knife (use something that you can move OPs with) and pull out (at the edges) some thin strands this will give a delicate edging to the kitten's fur.

Hope that this helps - I like what you have done in your painting, you made wonderful progress.
You may want to consider - yes

11-17-2013, 03:40 PM
Thanks a lot Mary ! Very helpful.

11-17-2013, 08:27 PM
[QUOTE=Yannse]I did the rooster on Canson paper, Mungyo oil pastel .9x11.5in.:cat: http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/17-Nov-2013/1111142-1470247_586262231435399_766831270_n.jpgI did the rooster on Canson paper, Mungyo oil pastel .9x11.5in.

11-17-2013, 11:15 PM
Hi all. Great drawings!

Here is an updated wip for the violin? Any comments/suggestions? Thanks!


11-18-2013, 08:58 AM
Ah Jiemin you were able to upload your Rooster again, lovely to see the beautiful fluid lines and colors. I really like the vibrant colors you choose, while keeping some pure and the pop of blue works so well. Your Rooster has personality plus!

Hi os2013 nice progress being made on the violin - the wood is so rich, just a beautiful appearance. The details are coming along nicely - the final will be well-worth the time you've put into breathing life into this piece.

11-18-2013, 09:05 AM
Some very fascinating work here, just sharing my little sketch done fairly loose.


11-18-2013, 10:47 AM
Hi ai2ai, nice to see you!

Fascinating painting, love those diagonals that work so well in this piece - gives it a great energy along with your loosely applied lines. I like how you used the diagonals to then work in fur strands and whiskers with spots of colors at the ends - superb technique! The eyes have me totally, she is so sweet ~

11-18-2013, 12:08 PM
Thanks for this wonderful teaching and learning site. Please critique my rooster Eleanore

11-18-2013, 01:04 PM
Doobi, nice kitten painting you've got going there.
Jiemin, handsome fella.
Os, the violin is coming along great.
Aiai, lovely sketch, I like your color combination.
Eleanore, Nice rooster going for you. I like his feather work. Maybe you could give him some feet to stand on? What size is your painting?

11-18-2013, 01:51 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Nov-2013/1256189-rooster.jpg Maybe this will help for the feet.

11-18-2013, 03:20 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Nov-2013/143278-stuff_on_my_phone_3143.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Nov-2013/143278-stuff_on_my_phone_3140.jpg

Hello, everyone!

Jaxon oil pastels, drawing pad Strathmore medium 6"x8" and horrible for oil pastels though great for pencil sketches. Hardly as great as the work I see here but have to restart somewhere.

Pat Isaac
11-18-2013, 04:59 PM
I have been away all day and there are all these wonderful works that have aappeared today.
Hi Gosh....great to have you back.I hope you are enjoying your stay in Germany.


11-18-2013, 07:14 PM
Tuscanny, Thank you for your kind comment. I have not figured out how to download a bigger picture which would have helped! The original is actually 14 x 17. Yes, feet would be good. Eleanore

11-18-2013, 10:37 PM
Hi Eleanor, like your Rooster - great personality! Nice headdress work, beautiful fluffy tail and gorgeous colors to the main feathers. My only suggestion is to see if you can add some free-flowing lines with the feathers so that they aren't confined to inside the body line unless that's your intention, which is perfectly fine. I agree about the feet, but you can also add some grass that would hide the feet. This is a beautiful painting - so happy that you have joined us.

Hi Gosh, nice to see you again - three wow, great going! Love the jellyfish - beautiful long lines, flowing gracefully (as they would underwater) and nice combination of colors with the water. Like your mushrooms - good form and coloring, and your still life of the jug and eggplants (great form/coloring)look great with your limited palette, like your reflections as well. Wonderful three paintings!

11-18-2013, 10:38 PM
Hi Gosh. Very nice paintings. I can't see the see pic too well though,

11-19-2013, 08:30 AM
Hi Gosh. Very nice paintings. I can't see the see pic too well though,

It's ok, it's not much better in person, hehe.

Hi, Pat.:wave:

11-19-2013, 09:32 AM
Well, I best be off buying art supplies worth using. I have great watercolors but no paper.

Oh I weep for my lost Senns.

11-19-2013, 05:03 PM
Here is another attempt. I call it Cock Tail Tropicale. It's a colorful but disturbed bird.


Made using Hahnemühle watercolor paper, 140lbs rough, 24x32cm with a layer or two of acrylic gesso. Jaxon OP's, was a sure improvement over what was done before. Interesting result with texture. This thing is much brighter than the picture shows. Sadly frog tape was used to create the border so when it came out it ruined the paper underneath.

Pat Isaac
11-19-2013, 05:14 PM
I do like all the abstract feeling about this. Maybe a few more darks in some areas, especially on the left.


11-19-2013, 10:47 PM
Hey Gosh this is so cool, we rarely have abstracts posted here so this is a neat piece to look at. Definitely like the block style and it's easy to distinguish the rooster. You've achieve nice color variation and enough so to add interest. Wonderful painting!

Don't you miss the Senns? I've not heard of Jaxon before, are they artist quality?

11-19-2013, 11:58 PM
Nice work, Gosh.

11-20-2013, 05:04 PM
Thank you. Jaxon seems to be a student grade brand of OPs.
I followed Pat's advice and darkened the left side of the rooster so this is what it looks like now after a few changes, it may not be over yet:


And then...

"First up is a Persian kitten, so darn cute"
Why, yes it is...I call this painting Tabby In The Sky with Diamonds: Tangerine Trees and Marmalade Kitties.

Done with Jaxon OP's, Hahnemühle 140lbs wc paper 24x32com, no gesso or underlayer, straight on the paper.

11-20-2013, 09:32 PM
Flycatcher, Thanks for your encouraging words. I love this monthly challenge and will be inspired to keep trying them. This medium is wonderful and I love the texture. I have been doing colored pencils for a year or two but was not satisfied with the " painterly " effect. I work in my library with my feet up, leaning on a large board. I use a portable music reading light attached to the board. I think I now know how to download the right size!! How wonderful this computer is for learning. Thank you,thank you. Eleanore

11-20-2013, 11:43 PM
GOSH, this is great. Your rooster looks good. Your kitten is very imaginative, half moon, half sun. Would like seeing more of your art.

11-21-2013, 07:01 AM
GOSH, this is great. Your rooster looks good. Your kitten is very imaginative, half moon, half sun. Would like seeing more of your art.

Thanks, I was actually tapping into my inner 1960's (guess what song was playing in the background) and it seems different people see different things.

Pat Isaac
11-21-2013, 08:05 AM
I do like the changes in the rooster, Gosh. and I also like the kitty....very imaginative.


11-21-2013, 08:52 AM
Hi Gosh, nice changes to the Rooster - I'm struck by how many patterns you were able to come up with. Your style seems to be leaning toward cubism, am I right?

Awesome Tabby in the Sky with Diamonds - once again you take shapes to a whole new direction, creating a mesmerizing piece with the kitten. I like this painting a lot. You see patterns and the results are very interesting.

Hi Eleanore, thank you very much and happy you've found this wonderful medium to channel your creativity. Looking forward to seeing more of your paintings, you might want to check out the weekly word challenge too - happy painting!

11-21-2013, 09:08 AM
I do like the changes in the rooster, Gosh. and I also like the kitty....very imaginative.


Thank you, Pat, but I disagree. Louis Wain and the 60's are all over this kitty. And the rooster seems to be done to death too.

11-23-2013, 11:01 AM
Hi, great work so far. I'm actually on holiday at the moment so will comment when possible.
This wonderful reference grabbed me immediately. It's on a canvas as I don't have pastel paper with me. It measures 30cms x 60cms. I started with an acrylic painted background and the rest is in Pentel Oil Pastels hence the two pictures.
Sorry that I don't seem able to cut out the tiled floor!!! Can't find a cropping facility.


Pat Isaac
11-23-2013, 11:32 AM
Wonderful, Margaretta...Those lacy tenacles are nicely done and I really like the transition from dark to light in the water.


11-23-2013, 11:34 AM
Lovely painting Margaretta. The background is a beautiful combination of blues and green that shows off the jellyfish perfectly.

The jellyfish have a nice fluid feel, good color choices. Nice painting to do while on holiday - so glad you enjoyed the reference photograph.

11-23-2013, 01:00 PM
I like your jellyfish, Margaretta. You handled the yellows well.

11-23-2013, 03:39 PM
Very nice, Margaretta. It is a difficult subject. :thumbsup:

11-23-2013, 05:31 PM
Hi all.

Margaretta, I like the jelly fish- very vivid and true colors!

Here is the final of the violin. I see a lot of small defects that could be fixed including some value adjustments and incorrect placement of elements, but decided to stop as I think it works together well at this point and did not want to overdo. Please C&C! Thanks!


PS: The pic was taken under incandescent light- this way the colors look more true to the ones I see on original- maybe just a bit warmer than the original.

11-23-2013, 11:35 PM
Very nice! Even the background has personality.

11-24-2013, 04:10 AM
Oh, wow!
Great work.

11-24-2013, 12:20 PM
Awesome os2013 - a wonderful finish to your violin. Just love the richness to the wood you achieved, great job on the details of the strings and attachments, and you nailed the form/lines of the instrument. The background fabric works really well for color, folds and feel.

You should feel really good about this painting, superb finish!

11-24-2013, 01:23 PM
Thank you Mary, gosh, Tuscany for warm comments!

What do you think about background? I did not blend on purpose to make the violin stand out more and look smoother. Does it work?

11-25-2013, 09:17 AM
Hi os2013, personally I like a more blended look for the fabric - making it more of a soft - luxuriously looking cloth. The colors and values will keep it in the background and not detract from the violin at all, particularly because the size, colors and high-valued hues will keep all the proper attention on the instrument.

Pat Isaac
11-25-2013, 10:50 AM
What a beautiful finish! Everything works perfectly and the drawing is superb.

11-25-2013, 06:45 PM
I think it's great. There is something on the string of the violin. It's a little spot.


11-25-2013, 11:22 PM
Gosh, it's a defect of my camera lens, no spot on the picture.. :)

11-26-2013, 06:02 AM
Well then, your work is spotless.

11-27-2013, 02:27 PM
Hello, it's me again! :D

A different approach to the jellyfish. I call this one "A Rather fine specimen"


My first attempt ever at fossil depiction. Critiques welcome.

Watercolour paper, Jaxon OP's, gesso background and a fork.

11-27-2013, 03:53 PM
Wow Gosh really took this one on as a challenge - enjoy your imagination. Great texture on this piece.

I'm having trouble seeing the jellyfish details and it could be that there isn't as much distinction in the values. If you squint your eyes you'll see what I mean. And the same hold true with the background colors and the jellyfish colors - they are similar so that my eyes have trouble focusing in on the jellyfish. Does this make sense to you?

11-27-2013, 08:46 PM
Wow Gosh really took this one on as a challenge - enjoy your imagination. Great texture on this piece.

I'm having trouble seeing the jellyfish details and it could be that there isn't as much distinction in the values. If you squint your eyes you'll see what I mean. And the same hold true with the background colors and the jellyfish colors - they are similar so that my eyes have trouble focusing in on the jellyfish. Does this make sense to you?

Perfectly. I was trying to fossilize the bl00dy jellyfish. Try number 2 flushed down the toilet.

11-27-2013, 10:22 PM
Oh my GOSH, I just got it :o my bad for not reading carefully your comments under the painting. So sorry.

I'm taking back my comments, since you were depicting a fossilized jellyfish - now it all makes sense and is well done. Yeah I think you showed nice fossil lines for aging and the colors on the jellyfish.

I hope you don't throw this out - it's good work. :thumbsup:

11-27-2013, 11:09 PM
Margaretta, those jellyfishes look very translucent.:thumbsup:

OS, what a nice finish. It really looks very woodsy. Superb piece.

Gosh, a very nice fossil rendition. Very creative and of good color combo.

Just a couple of doodles.

Portfolio watersoluable oil pastel - 4x6 inch.



11-27-2013, 11:38 PM
Fossilized jellyfish, very creative!
Sandra, I'm glad you sketched 2 more of the choices for the month. Nice going.

Pat Isaac
11-28-2013, 08:28 AM
You did a great job fossilizing the jellyfish, Gosh. Nice take on the subject matter.


11-28-2013, 10:22 AM
Nice sketches Sandra - good to see you back this month.

11-29-2013, 06:58 AM
Thank you everyone for your very kind comments. These are lovely references and a great challenge.
OS2013: I loved watching the build-up from the earliest sketch to the wonder of your finale. I learnt a lot too from the comments and analysis.
Yannse: What a great car! I can just touch the rust and like how it has settled so well in the grass. There are attractive light effects on the fence, roof and radiator etc. Your rooster too is at one with its environment i.e. the grass. He’s stunning and really glows.
Gakinme: Well done to you for using so many images. I really like your sand colours, very tactile. The landscape is interesting with the different horizontal greens and forms broken by the purple houses. The toadstools stand out…almost edible! Your cat’s green eyes mean business! I like the red and white wispy fur!
GOSH: Well, another artist inspired by so many references! What a good idea. The fossil effect shows such clever imagination. You could also call it ‘Fork Fun!’ Your rooster has lovely flowing shapes like a silky patchwork quilt and I agree that the kitty is 60’s fun…reminds me of a tank top pattern but you are probably much too young! Great to see your sketchbook with the toadstools and still life. I like your emphasis on the objects and reflections.
Maela49: What a wonderful variety of vibrant colours in your rooster! He is so striking against the light background and looks like he’s leaping from the fence to fly to the ground.
Ai2ai: That cat certainly has attitude! Love the colouring, the eyes and whiskers.
Doobi: This kitty is startling, arresting…you can’t help but look at him! Many artists think pictures should be disquieting as it makes them more original. Just a thought about something I learnt from WC: my pastels have many shades of grey. I learnt to use them and keep white for just the most extreme, important highlights i.e. be very sparing with pure white. Apparently it increases the effectiveness. Hope you don’t mind me mentioning this. Your still life is gorgeous.
Tuscanny: That is so real…the many colours of the stones on the wall. I love the continental feel of this grille and lamp, in fact the whole picture. Your jellyfish are truly in water and the details very fine.
Spydersmomtammy: Who could resist your kitty with the appealing green eyes?
Robertsloan: That kitty has a great face and that paw is about to bat me…..ouch! Very expressive. I’ve often debated with myself about signing a picture. Personally I like the picture to be the total subject. But then my name isn’t very decorative…..
Flycatcher: Such a beautiful still life. The spheres are a great lesson on how to do them and the jug is very elegantly coloured and drawn.
DPNRJ: Mick Jagger would certainly croon to your ‘Little Red Rooster!’ He is dramatic on the red background and beautifully drawn. I don’t think he would be too lazy to crow the day…..

11-29-2013, 05:50 PM
Thanks Margaretta, nice to see you.

11-30-2013, 06:44 PM
Thank you everyone for participating in this months challenge - exciting to see so many different variations of the same reference image. The creativity runs high among oil pastelists.

12-02-2013, 12:08 PM
If there aren't any December challenges, then November is the gift that keeps on giving...:evil:

Jaxon OP's, layer of gesso, wc paper 30x40 cm.


Pat Isaac
12-02-2013, 12:17 PM
What a nice take on the elements of the challenge.
There will be a Dec. Challenge. Tuscanny is going to do it, so give it a little time.


12-02-2013, 01:32 PM
LOL Gosh, you are something else. Wow, every time I look something new reveals itself. Wonderful combination of subjects - that face is haunting!!

12-02-2013, 01:51 PM
Thanks, Pat and Flycatcher!
It gets weirder.

12-02-2013, 02:19 PM
Wieder? No way!