View Full Version : July 2015 Challenge

07-02-2015, 11:20 AM
Hi everyone!

Here are the reference images for July's challenge. You are also free to post works in progress if you need any help or advice.

Please tell us:
What support you used including any surface prep.
The finished size of your painting or sketch.
The brand of oil pastels used.
Whether you have used anything as an underpainting.

Other mediums may be used to complement, but the work must be primarily oil pastels. Oil sticks and oil bars may be used. Wax pastels are welcome too.

You have a month, but the thread will stay open so if you are unable to post by the end of the month you can do it later.

Have fun everyone!
I'm having problems uploading the photos. Will be back as soon as I can:heart:

07-02-2015, 07:08 PM
Thank You for hosting, Christel!
Hope whatever is issue with images, it can be fixed, OR just pick up some links to image library, if nothing else works. Well, we all will wait patiently here...

07-03-2015, 12:08 AM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-29211NAdancers_157_crias_wc.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-9879dsc01477mustcreate_wcs.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-25241lapoofwc.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-double_plum_mcImd_wc_rils.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-auto-670666_640pixabay.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-Ron_s_door_RIL.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-praguegardens_by_impshlady_wc.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-Rabbit2_stehuie20_wcs.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Jul-2015/1256189-Rolo_Gwen_Card_wc.jpg
I hope you find something you like :cat:

07-03-2015, 12:10 AM
Thanks Tatiana! I changed to another browser. I guess I should have thought of that beforehand.

07-03-2015, 10:17 AM
I had a painting just begun, with the first stages of a kneeling man in the middle of a piece of Pastelmat, and thought he'd go really nicely in the woodland steps scene :thumbsup:

I had to change the light direction on his body, which still needs some adjusting and tidying. He was originally lit from the viewer's left.

After the initial sketching out (forgot to turn off the auto-contrast boost on the scanner, so he's a bit darker than IRL):


And then some work on the steps (after turning off the auto contrast):


07-03-2015, 10:40 AM
Lovely combination! Looking forward to seeing your update!

Pat Isaac
07-03-2015, 01:35 PM
Thanks for hosting, Christel. Wonderful images and a great start, Sarah.


07-04-2015, 06:51 PM
Wonderful images, Christel, I hope to try at least one this month.

Sarah, I like your idea, will be interested to see where you take it.

07-05-2015, 06:37 AM
:clap: Hi everyone !

Thanks for hosting Christel. I like the garden path as well. I thought I would try underpainting with soft pastels and use alcohol as solvent. Then buildup color using Notan style of drawing with oil pastels. Recently read about it but haven't tried it before.

I used Mungo op then layered with senneliers. It's 4x6 inch in size on printing paper.


07-05-2015, 11:58 AM
Sadia - you've chosen a difficult subject on such a small size too. Good going! :thumbsup:
I'd like to make some suggestions: to add depth to the stairs, they need to be lightened as they get narrower. The shrubs on the side are in sunlight and could also get a touch of cream to make them more sunlit. I like the yellow in the front foliage - maybe you could add some more yellow to make it stand out more like little flowers. To illustrate what I mean I did a little gimp manipulation just as an example.

07-05-2015, 11:59 AM
sadia, i like this. it looks bright and alive.


07-05-2015, 02:05 PM
I flipped the image. Sennelier Oil Pastels on Mi-Teinetes Black pastel paper 12" x 16". Please ignore the date on the picture - when I change batteries the date resets in my camera. Sorry for the confusion.


07-05-2015, 02:18 PM
Wow! very well done, Piratess! Only 1 little point I'd like to mention though, the right eye is slightly smaller.

07-05-2015, 11:20 PM
Thanks Ed. :cat:

Piratess, that's amazing. Nice portrait. :)

Wow Christel! The cream and yellow really do make the sides stand out. Perhaps I didn't put enough light tones. Will correct it but I want to redo it on canvas. I got 8x10 inch canvas board just for this purpose. :thumbsup:

07-06-2015, 01:07 AM

Update: Added some lighter tones using white and yellow senneliers. I had to cut it down some more to fit into my 4x6 inch album. The plastic sleeves are perfect to store these quick studies.
Enjoy :clap:

07-06-2015, 04:34 AM
I like your improvements, Sadia!

07-06-2015, 04:36 AM
Here are my roses, A4, using pentel and Rolfes ops.

07-07-2015, 12:28 AM
That's great Christel! Very detailed and realistic looking roses.:)

Hmmm. I'm having trouble with canvas. What is a good solvent to blend ops? Rubbing alcohol just removes all the layers. Good for cleaning up mistakes.

07-07-2015, 01:49 AM
Thanks Sadia! I use thinners on my first layer sometimes. It does take the oil pastels right into the paper though and therefore needs more color over it. If you use canvas, it doesn't sink in and therefore will remove the pastel. Odorless thinners can also be used on paper. I've used linseed oil with great success on canvas too - don't use oil on paper as it goes yellow! It has to dry for a day at least.:wave:

Pat Isaac
07-07-2015, 10:41 AM
Nicely done and they really pop out from the background.


07-07-2015, 06:15 PM
Thanks Sadia! I use thinners on my first layer sometimes. It does take the oil pastels right into the paper though and therefore needs more color over it. If you use canvas, it doesn't sink in and therefore will remove the pastel. I've used linseed oil with great success on canvas too- don't use oil on paper as it goes yellow!
Hello Sadia,

I guess a lot depends on the brand of pastels one uses, as well as the quantity of OMS and the type of paper, since I never encountered these problems with Sennelier and Holbeins. (I think Tuscanny uses Pentel)

As per linseed oil, along with Sennelier amongst other, it can make a greasy mess. You may want to experiment first with a mini tiny bit of 50-50 OMS-refined linseed oil, if OMS wasn't enough. BTW I never had my paper go yellow.


Vivien Maloney
07-07-2015, 11:41 PM
Christel - Beautiful roses! Love them! I'm PM'ing you, for help! :eek:

07-07-2015, 11:47 PM
Thanks Pat and Vivien!

07-08-2015, 06:13 AM
My version of Lapoof. A4.

07-08-2015, 11:28 AM
Wow Christel! Love the kitty-kat. The fur looks life like.

Thanks Christel and Marie for your input regarding solvents.

Can I use mineral oil as solvent on canvas? I was using Mungyo ops but they are not blending at all. So I switched to soft pastels with alcohol as solvent in very small amounts. The color pigment seems to be staying. Then I'm hoping the senneliers will go on top. I have mineral oil on hand but no linseed oil. Thanks.

07-08-2015, 11:35 AM
This is what it looks like so far. It has some oil pastels but mostly soft pastels.

07-08-2015, 12:14 PM
Looking good so far Sadia. Mineral oils cover all the distillates from crude oil. It is not a good idea to use that oil eg baby oil, as it doesn't dry readily and takes weeks for the ops to set. Maybe you could try zest-it, walnut oil or turpentine?
When using soft pastels as underlayer, you need to fix the pastels first so that the oil pastels can grip onto the surface. Clear gesso works very well.

Pat Isaac
07-09-2015, 02:52 PM
That is one great cat Christel!! The eyes are looking right at you....

Sadia, Christel has given you some good advice about solvents and fixing the soft pastels.


07-09-2015, 05:33 PM
Piratess, marvelous portrait!

Sadia, nice work so far. That is a challenging reference for sure.

Christel, love your roses and the kitty, beautiful work on both. I have my eye on the cat reference too; is his name really Lapoof?? LOL! :cat:

07-10-2015, 12:09 AM
Thanks Pat and Joanne! Looking forward to your cat, Joanne!

07-13-2015, 10:54 AM
Very vibrant forest path, ReddLilly, and the changes are good.

Lovely portrait, Piratess, excellent colours.

Excellent work on the cat and flowers, tuscanny. The fur on the cat is great.

I managed to get some more done on mine today, just blocking in really:


Still a very long way from finished and I've been so busy :( Still, should be less busy now so back to painting :crossfingers: :heart:

07-13-2015, 12:29 PM
Looking good ,Sarah!

07-13-2015, 02:02 PM
I did the squirrel! The darks aren't as harsh or glaring - the scanner decided to make them look that way. I used Holbeins and Senneliers on Canson Mi-Teintes paper. Dimensions 6 X 8 in.


Pat Isaac
07-13-2015, 04:00 PM
Love the yellow background, Sarah.
What a charming squirrel, Ruby and great work on the fur. I would add a little dark under his foot so he sits on the ground.


07-13-2015, 07:53 PM
Sarah, I like the colors you're using with this piece.

Ruby, I wondered if you'd paint the squirrel. :wave: Great job, he looks really cute. :thumbsup:

07-14-2015, 12:20 AM
Great squirrel, Ruby! I like the eye. I also agree with Pat .

07-14-2015, 07:33 AM
Love your Squirrel Ruby .its not just it looks but also your interpretation ,the use of Colors ! Great job

07-14-2015, 11:35 AM
Got my kitty sketch done, will get busy with my OP's later today. Haven't painted anything with OP's for months, it's a bit intimidating to get started. Weird. :eek:

07-14-2015, 07:19 PM
Thanks everyone for the comments/compliments on the squirrel. :-)

07-15-2015, 12:05 AM
Joanne - looking forward to seeing your cat! Don't let those op's intimidate you!

07-15-2015, 03:21 AM
My combination of the huge rabbit and doorway, A4.:D

07-16-2015, 12:04 PM
Excellent squirrel Ruby, your best small furry yet! :heart:

Love the combination, tuscanny, works really well.

Just a flyby to post an update:


Laterz oil pastelists! :wave:

07-17-2015, 07:50 AM
Thank you, Sarah! I like how yours is progressing. The colors in the background are so soothing.

Christel - I love your combination of the two sources! The little bunny is just precious.

07-17-2015, 10:49 AM
Bit more done today, getting there:


07-17-2015, 11:58 PM
Lovely, Sarah!

07-18-2015, 10:20 AM
Hello all,

Am not quite a regular on this forum, but do look through it often and have posted once or twice (I think). Anyway, here's my little attempt. Done with wax crayons (children's), about the size of half an A3 paper.

Comments and criticisms very welcome. Thanks.

- Srineet.


Pat Isaac
07-18-2015, 10:53 AM
Really nice, Sarah....


07-18-2015, 11:56 AM
Srineet - lovely drawing! Good composition and lovely use of colors. wax crayons are more than welcome if that is your preferred medium.

Pat Isaac
07-18-2015, 12:02 PM
What a nice feel to this painting Srineet. It has a look of transparent water color.


07-19-2015, 09:57 AM
Many thanks Christel and Pat for your kind words.

- Srineet.

07-21-2015, 10:39 AM
Lovely fresh painting, Srineet!

Today's update, nearly there:


07-21-2015, 11:24 AM
Looking very good, Sarah!

07-25-2015, 04:49 AM
Ok here is the progress on the canvas painting of the garden path. I used Liquitex clear gesso to seal the soft pastel under painting. To blend oil pastels , I am using R&D Low odour thinner for oil color. Even with this I'm having difficulty. I ordered Canson watercolor pater so will try that next time. I'm not a fan of canvas.

07-25-2015, 05:49 AM
Lovely progress Sadia!
Now you can give it another final layer with pure oil pastels wherever you want more detail and/or color.
If you drag a dark brown or black over the tree trunks it'll indicate texture. Light green in the tree foliage will show where the light is catching the leaves. Use orange and salmon pink to indicate some flowers. For the fallen leaves on the steps lightly drag brown and burnt sienna over the small areas. No need for lots of blending, only as little as what is needed.
I'm Looking forward to seeing your end painting!

Pat Isaac
07-25-2015, 11:41 AM
Yes, nice progress.....and Christel has some good suggestions.


07-30-2015, 09:17 AM

Hello everyone.:wave: .this is me Shaimaa from Egypt .. this is my second participation here since almost 2 years ... I used jaxon OP colors on A3 canson. Hope you'll like it :)

07-30-2015, 09:32 AM
Hi Shaimaa. Welcome to the oil pastel forum and to this challenge. Beautiful portrait work! I like the background too.
I hope we'll soon see more of your work!

Pat Isaac
07-30-2015, 10:15 AM
Welcome Shaimaa. Nicely done.


07-31-2015, 10:13 AM
Really lovely, Koky20 :)

I'm still working on mine! I hope to finish it in the next few days, and will post it when it's done.

Thanks to tuscanny for hosting x

08-01-2015, 05:00 PM
Thank you all :)

08-04-2015, 07:18 PM
I did get a start on the kitty, thought I'd post my WIP because it might be a bit before I get back to it. Needs a lot of work still. :D


08-05-2015, 12:20 AM
Great start, Joanne! I like the addition of mauve. Looking forward to seeing your finished version.

Pat Isaac
08-05-2015, 11:41 AM
Looking good and the eyes are coming along fine.