View Full Version : First pastel in years

03-17-2017, 09:03 AM
And I'm finding it unexpectedly difficult. I don't know why I expected to start in with as much expertise as I had when I was doing horse and dog portraits regularly 30 years ago! :confused:

I think I've more or less figured most of it out again, though I'm still fumbling a bit. This is a WIP of a portrait of one of my pony mares in soft pastel and pastel pencils on velour and so far reasonably pleased. The background will be a wild rose thicket behind/around the head and I'm still working out whether to block in the mane and work the roses over that or do the roses and leaves first and work the mane around them.

So far, I haven't made that decision, cheated and started the roses in front of the pony head !

Donna T
03-17-2017, 04:28 PM
This is looking good, Sharon! I'm sure that the more you use your pastels the more familiar the whole process will become. Usually, it's best to do the background first and work forward so you have the opportunity to overlap elements for depth but I've never worked on velour and don't know how difficult it is to cover pastel on it.

water girl
03-17-2017, 04:53 PM
Yes, a nice start. You'll gain more confidence in short order. Thank you for sharing your process.

03-19-2017, 04:16 PM
Good start! You may want to consider painting the background first because the horse is so much lighter in value than the rose bush will be. Perhaps you will remember that the usual progression in pastels is to work light over dark values. I'm looking forward to seeing how you proceed on this one.

03-20-2017, 07:40 PM
Looking good, Sharon. Good advice from the others. In something like this, I would put background in soon after blocking in, or shape of horse head is painted. Then I work back and forth between horse and background, using negative painting to adjust drawing of horse and whatever tack or gear or rider there may be.....something to think about.....

03-21-2017, 11:13 AM
you have a lovely light touch...it will all come together soon, I'm sure!