PDA

View Full Version : Desert Landscape (X-post SW and Western Art)


sportpony
07-15-2017, 08:23 PM
Going back to pastels after a 30-year absence (prior pastels were soft pastel animal portraits on velour) using sanded paper for the first time and first complete landscape ever ... it is a slow learning curve.

It seems the third time is the charm. When I was finally satisfied with at least one lobe of the prickly pear cactus, it was my third try. Now I'm thinking the rocks are looking like rocks. After the second try, I scrubbed the pastel off with my toothbrush and started more or less from scratch.

I think part of my problem is that I've worked in graphite for so many years that I *see* in gray scale and all the colors in the pastels tend to confuse me. On this try, I sketched in the rocks using a white and a dark sienna pastel pencil so I could see highlights and shadows and then laid in some of the mid tones. Seems to have worked, although a lot more detail to come, like the cactus.

Last stage will be the distant landscape and sky. We'll see ... several pastel people tell me that they work from 'back to front'.

This was intended solely as a practice piece, however and so far I do feel I am learning a lot from it, so it is serving it's purpose.

artelahe
07-15-2017, 10:28 PM
I really like the hardness of your rocks. That's some very nice detail in your prickly pear!

huanghehe
07-15-2017, 11:13 PM
Really nice! Looking forward to seeing your finished one!

water girl
07-16-2017, 01:01 PM
Welcome back to pastels! You have the art background, you just need to get comfortable with your sticks. It looks great at this point. There is no hard "right or wrong" sequence when it comes to putting in your background. You will eventually figure out what works best for you.

Divasin
07-17-2017, 08:47 AM
Very nice start!...I can see a nice touch from soft to edgy.
I work from back to front to try and keep my hands out of the soft pastels I use :angel:(e.g. Sennelier)
But I think it's also important to start on an area that you are confident with and then the rest falls into place!:smug:

sportpony
07-17-2017, 10:30 AM
V
I work from back to front to try and keep my hands out of the soft pastels I use :angel:(e.g. Sennelier)


I agree and I this is about as difficult in that respect as I could have gotten, right handed and I'm working from right to left and bottom to top! Using a lot of blank paper to cover and having to wash hands and arms often as well! :eek:

Donna T
07-17-2017, 11:17 AM
You have a beautiful painting started here, Sharon. There is such a nice contrast in colors and textures. You said "part of my problem is that I've worked in graphite for so many years that I *see* in gray scale and all the colors in the pastels tend to confuse me." You can use this tendency to your advantage if you use a paper or support that can handle a wet underpainting. By putting down a monochromatic underpainting first you are then free to add colors on top. As long as the values match, you can be as creative as you like with the colors and the image will work. Just a thought and something you might like to experiment with someday.

sportpony
07-18-2017, 10:27 AM
You can use this tendency to your advantage if you use a paper or support that can handle a wet underpainting. By putting down a monochromatic underpainting first you are then free to add colors on top. As long as the values match, you can be as creative as you like with the colors and the image will work. Just a thought and something you might like to experiment with someday.

I've watched a couple of tutorials that demonstrated this but I don't handle 'wet' media well. I tried watercolors, oils and acrylics many years ago and came to the conclusion that the only thing I can manage with a brush is painting the side of the barn!

I plan to experiment with an 'underpainting' using my powdered pastel and see how that works. I know it won't cover as well, but it may end up being useful as a background tint.