View Full Version : Window with a View - FINISHED!

Susan Borgas
06-13-2006, 03:47 AM
Mix of pastel brands
Storm Blue AS Colourfix paper
33.5 x 47.5 centimetres

I enjoyed the Flinders Range Wattle still life so much that I thought why not combine a still life with a landscape.

There is an old building on the family property that I have often thought about painting a scene looking through a window and thought it would suit a landscape and still life combination.

After considering a few ideas I have now settled on a couple of props to make things a bit more interesting. Hopefully it will give an impression of someone nearby contemplating what life was all about many years ago for the people who once lived there.

I am aware that the horizon line is near the half way mark of the paper. I want a big Aussie sky, as the scene from the window is of a great expanse of blue, hence did not want to take away any of the sky by raising the horizon. By lowering the horizon it seem to cramp everything near the bottom of the window. I thought I would go with how I have drawn it up. I can always crop it later if need be if the horizon line does not work.

For those that remember me painting the Mt Remarkable area; the mountain is in the far distance of this work.

C & C as always is welcomed.



06-13-2006, 08:01 AM
Great start! pulling up a chair.

06-13-2006, 10:14 AM
Hi Susan,

This reminds me of a trompe l'oeil. Not one in its pure terms, but sure reminds me of one. And I'm a sucker for them.
I'll be looking forward to see the following stages.



06-13-2006, 04:05 PM
It is a very nice work, Love the idea behind it :)

Merethe T
06-13-2006, 06:18 PM
Ah, this will be good....pulling up a chair too....

Kathryn Day
06-13-2006, 07:18 PM
Looking forward to your WIP. I see a hat on the ledge, can't make out what else is there.

06-13-2006, 07:57 PM
I'm intrigued!

Susan Borgas
06-14-2006, 03:13 AM
As you can see more work was done on the landscape. I worked on my husbands Akubra hat though won’t be working on the next prop until near completion of the painting. I am grinning thinking about the next item wondering if anyone will guess it. :D

José I love looking at trompe l’oeil. If I had the wall space I would do one in my home. Have thought about putting one on the end wall in the toilet but don’t think that room could handle the traffic. ;)


06-14-2006, 03:18 AM
wow .... i can't wait to see this progress ... it's fabulous! ... and i can't guess ... 8v(

06-14-2006, 06:43 AM
Looks great so far. The horizon being halfway doesn't seem to matter, (I am always trying to avoid the middle), as everything else balances it out.
Will keep watching.

06-14-2006, 07:28 AM
This is really cool. The light in this is just amazing, and I love the colors in the grasses. I'm not crazy about the horizon running through the middle of the frame....I keep feeling like I want to pull down the top of the frame like a window shade, lol.

This is a deeply contemplative piece. I like that it tells a story.

Karen Margulis
06-14-2006, 07:40 AM
This is so cool! I love puzzles. I'll be sure to keep watching. Wonderful so far!

06-14-2006, 07:43 AM




06-14-2006, 08:58 AM
Wow, you have captured me! This is looking great so far, I will be watching for more updates.

Mikki Petersen
06-14-2006, 02:03 PM
Oh Susan, I love this concept! In this case, (and what do I know?), I think your centered horizon line will be okay because within the landscape, it is not centered. The window is offset on the support which I would think was the important factor. Can't wait to see this one done!


Jo Castillo
06-14-2006, 11:14 PM
Susan, How much fun is this? I will be checking back. Can't guess and I love puzzles, too.

06-15-2006, 12:42 AM
What fun to see how you develope your paintings. By the way do you have to use some sort of a binder to use the pastel leftovers or lpowder left from painting?

Susan Borgas
06-15-2006, 03:44 AM
I didn’t get much work done on this today and nearly didn’t post an update. I did a rethink and decided to post anyway as it is after all a work in progress. The timber frame at the top of the window is now completed unless of cause there is a need to alter something at a later time. I have started on the darks in and around the stonework. I will be adding warm colours in these areas as the work progresses. I placed the lights in the stonework as well.

Thanks everyone for taking the time to comment, some of them really tickle my sense of humour. :lol:

I keep feeling like I want to pull down the top of the frame like a window shade, lol.

I like the way you explained that Kim :D . Hopefully when the foliage is put in the top part of the sky, it will help balance it out.

By the way do you have to use some sort of a binder to use the pastel leftovers or lpowder left from painting

Gerry I have only ever used water (very sparingly) to make new sticks from the powder. Some artists use alcohol as it dries much quicker. I find my sticks dry overnight if I have made them the night before.

I have other commitments over the next three days and unable to paint. I will be checking back here though.

Cheers, Susan :wave:

PS…. You will kick yourselves for not thinking what the last prop might be. It will be sitting to the left of the hat on the window seal. :angel: :D


06-15-2006, 08:06 AM
I am enjoying your painting! Can't wait to see the finished product.

And . . . is the prop going to be a walking stick? That would make sense to me.

Susan Borgas
06-15-2006, 08:06 PM
Marsha glad you are enjoying this painting. I can see why you would think the prop is a walking stick but sorry no :D . A WC member also suggested the same on my blog.

I am so tempted to let the cat out the bag with this one but I won’t…..well not just yet anyway:evil:

Hints: Vegetable matter. There is actually a faint line to the left of the hat indicating the placement of this item...... wonder if I have given it away :wave:

06-15-2006, 08:35 PM
Wow, this is absolutely gorgeous!! hmmm not a pear???

06-15-2006, 08:38 PM
oooh, so fun! and wow, this is....just wow!

06-15-2006, 09:25 PM

Susan Borgas
06-16-2006, 12:56 AM
Drum roll please!!!:music: :music: :music: :music: Kim is the winner!!!:clap: :lol: http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Jun-2006/13752-th_happyfamily.gif

06-16-2006, 04:22 PM
SUsan, this looks like it will be another winner. What a great idea to combine the landscape and still life...and in such a wonderful "frame"...coming along beautifully!


06-16-2006, 04:50 PM
WOW WOW WOW, I just love it!

Jo Castillo
06-16-2006, 08:30 PM
Ha, we should have known from the clues in the first entry. Darn. So, wattle, it is. :)

06-17-2006, 01:57 AM
Really enjoying watching the progress on this...very nice!!

06-17-2006, 11:40 AM
I love your highlights in this piece. The rocks are great and the hat is a nice touch. You are moving right along with this one.

06-18-2006, 02:05 PM
Hi Susan,

I hope the prop is binoculars cuz the landscape is beautiful!!

Love this painting!


David Patterson
06-18-2006, 02:58 PM
This is coming along very nice!


06-18-2006, 04:00 PM
:lol: So Susan....what's my prize?:lol:

Susan Borgas
06-18-2006, 07:34 PM
Thanks everyone, it is great to see your comments.

:lol: So Susan....what's my prize?:lol:

Your prize is knowing that you won. :lol::thumbsup:.... and a cyber :grouphug:.

Well a quizz was rather fun but I guess it is now time for me get some more work done on this painting. I should have something to post by later today. :wave:

Susan Borgas
06-19-2006, 03:02 AM
As I had a break from this work for a few days it took me awhile to get motivated today but eventually settled down to applying three light layers to the stonework. There is still work to be done molding the shapes of the stone around the window. That will happen as pastel is applied with additional layers.



06-19-2006, 08:48 AM
Your light touch and impeccable values make this uncannily real!

Susan Borgas
06-20-2006, 04:35 AM
Thanks Kim, your own work as well as many others here keeps on track.

06-20-2006, 08:43 AM
Another brilliant WIP Susan! Beautifully executed.

06-20-2006, 09:30 AM
Susan...this is really looking good!!

06-20-2006, 12:39 PM
Yippee!! an update!! Looking great!! Its always interesting to me when artists work on the whole painting at once. I start in the upper left corner and completely finish it before moving down and right to the next area. How do you keep everything from smearing? Do you use a mahl stick or cover it with something like glassine?

Susan Borgas
06-21-2006, 03:36 AM
Well they say things come in three’s…….. if one is to believe it, the day before yesterday when throwing a ball for my husbands working dog I broke a light globe under our veranda. (Just as well my husband Malcolm thought it was funny as he had to replace the light socket as a piece of plastic broke off). Secondly, yesterday I dropped a saucepan lid and broke part of the knob off. Thirdly, I have just now knocked a dish of pastel dust onto the studio floor here. Does this mean I am safe now! :p

I do think the tides are turning as I found two piece of Unison pastel stick that I had dropped quite some time ago and given up trying to find. Low and behold I just found them a moment ago stuck between the sliding section of the easel legs; one in each front leg! :rolleyes:

Now onto the work in progress, as you can see the second prop is now starting to materialise. While the wattle is flowering I am taking advantage of this Australian native.

The stonework is slowly taking shape. They are tedious with the tonal values varying so much. There is no roof on the hut which helps bounce quite a bit of reflective light around.

So far I am happy with the progress of this work.

Melanie I have used a mahl stick on the odd painting but not this one. The only time I needed to rest my hand was for the hat. I did that much earlier so that I could rest my hand on the paper. I am finding my hand is steady enough for the rough stonework without a support to rest on.


06-21-2006, 04:30 AM
lol @ Jose and Ditto what he said !! Oooh and ahhhh, fab work! Love the hat.

Jo Castillo
06-21-2006, 10:39 AM
Well they say things come in three’s…….. if one is to believe it, the day before yesterday when throwing a ball for my husbands working dog I broke a light globe under our veranda. (Just as well my husband Malcolm thought it was funny as he had to replace the light socket as a piece of plastic broke off). Secondly, yesterday I dropped a saucepan lid and broke part of the knob off. Thirdly, I have just now knocked a dish of pastel dust onto the studio floor here. Does this mean I am safe now

After all that, the painting is still wonderful. Hats are not easy. I could rest there and look at the view for a long while.


06-21-2006, 12:23 PM
Those rocks look so real at the bottom of the opening. could you post a close-up of your strokes?

Susan Borgas
06-22-2006, 03:19 AM
I now have reached the stage of “more look than put”. It is so close to finished now that I am already thinking about my next painting.

A couple of close-ups so that you can see the stonework and hat clearly. If you look at the band on the hat you will see a tiny kangaroo; have to have it looking authentic. ;)

What are your thoughts; can it be improved on with any alterations? I do think I need to check the darks in and around the stonework at the bottom as they look darker in value than I want them.




06-22-2006, 03:45 AM
i love your painting! ... such detail !! ... such skill is evident ... the only nit as they say that came to my mind is that although there's no roof on the building, the viewer doesn't realize that and i kind of expect to see the walls darker ... to be in higher contrast to the view through the window ... so i played with your image in microsoft photo editor and adjusted the contrast and gamma and this is what i got ...
it may be slight, but my eyes don't get lost in the detail of the rocks so much as they do when the rocks are lighter ... it's like they're fighting for attention against the view and the hat and the waddle (and kangaroo which i think was quite clever!!) ... but that's just my opinion for whatever it's worth ... it's still a fabulous painting as is ...

06-22-2006, 05:43 AM
I've been watching this one progress and I think I can only say one thing,


:clap: :clap: :clap:

06-22-2006, 06:22 AM
omg I can't believe there's a roo on the hat!!:clap: Love it, really great lights and arks on the brick frame. (darks too)!!


06-22-2006, 07:42 AM
Susan, I tend to agree with Violet. Your detail on the stonework is so fine and so arresting that the landscape becomes secondary. I don't think I want the walls to go any darker, though....I think I'd like to see more contrast in the landscape, with more darks in that line of trees.

Just a thought...you're the landscape painter, not me!

06-22-2006, 12:00 PM
This is amazing,Susan!Beautiful composition and breathtaking outcome...

06-22-2006, 01:14 PM
Susan... this is beautiful ! So visually interesting and extremely well executed. If I were you, I would enter it in a competition.


Jo Castillo
06-22-2006, 03:10 PM
This is just great and I hesitate to repeat all the others, but, oh well......


Kathryn Day
06-22-2006, 03:39 PM
Beautiful finish!!

Merethe T
06-22-2006, 03:46 PM
WOW - excellent work!! Love the detail on the hat! ;) Love the comp and the colours, and your details are just perfect...great WIP!! Thanks for sharing...:)

06-22-2006, 06:20 PM
Susan...absolutely beautiful. It makes me want to see Australia! It was really interesting watching the progression of this piece through the course of the thread.

I'm very impressed...and the other work you show in your signature line is beautiful too.

Susan Borgas
06-23-2006, 03:40 AM
With all the excellent feed back that I have received I did make some adjustments. My heart wasn’t in my mouth while making these changes but my husbands was.:lol: Once done he could see that it was the right thing to do. :heart:

Ok what adjustments have been made!

The base of the branch coming from the peppermint box tree was thickened plus some lights introduced into the foliage and limbs. That tree is what is throwing the shadow across the foreground.

Some blades of grass were added to the foreground.

I darkened the row of trees in the middle ground. Also I scraped some pale lemon across the paddock behind this same strip.

I greyed off the reds in the stonework, especially the right hand side.

The darks in and around the stonework was smudged with a mid value while the bottom lighter areas were scraped with a dark.

The full size digital photo I spent quite a bit of time editing the colour and values with a freshly calibrated graphics monitor where I couldn’t say the image looked different to the original painting. Of cause once the image is shrunk for the web, some changes do take place. All the same this image is much closer than previous postings.

So there you have it, signed, not sealed with a buyer yet but hopefully delivered one day soon. ;)


06-23-2006, 07:05 PM
this is a masterpiece ... absulutely fabulous ... your additional treatments truly have been successful in achieving a grand painting ... congratulations

Piper Ballou
06-23-2006, 08:07 PM
Magnificent, I love the way the sun plays in the window, like it is inviting the viewer to come forth

06-23-2006, 08:58 PM

Jo Castillo
06-23-2006, 09:56 PM
This is really nice. I can feel the cool and see the warmth. Nice job.

06-23-2006, 10:00 PM
Absolutely incredible! I can't image what it took to finish this. Magnificent!

06-23-2006, 11:11 PM
*sigh* tis lovely. It amazes me how you do it.

06-24-2006, 05:04 AM
Absolutely beautiful work Susan!!! It looks so real!!!

Susan Borgas
06-25-2006, 03:46 AM
You all are so generous with C&C. It is with your help that I am able to see things that need to be fixed to make a better piece of art and I thank you for that. :grouphug:

If you are interested I am still painting. As I am not using pastels for the moment you can catch up with what I am doing on my blog. I have a oil WIP happening there that isn't being posted on WetCanvas. Maybe I will post the next one :thumbsup:

06-25-2006, 05:46 AM
wow! 10/10 :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Paula Ford
06-25-2006, 11:11 AM
How absolutely beautiful this painting is Susan!! WOW


06-25-2006, 05:43 PM
How absolutely beautiful this painting is Susan!! WOW


Yes, what Paula said!:clap:

06-25-2006, 05:46 PM
Fabulous...it's such a great concept and you carried it to completion incredibly. I don't think you will have trouble finding a buyer for this one!


06-25-2006, 07:08 PM
You did a great job of deciding what needed to be "resolved", did that, and then called it finished. Beautiful!

Can't wait for when you do you next posting here.

Karen Margulis
06-25-2006, 08:05 PM
WoW!!! A beautiful painting! I enjoyed following this and look forward to your next one as well.

06-26-2006, 01:45 AM
Beautiful work!!

Shane Keene
06-26-2006, 02:26 AM
I tried to think of something other than "WOW" to say but, well, WOW. This is gorgeous.

06-26-2006, 10:23 AM
Truly lovely Susan and so very different!

06-26-2006, 01:25 PM
Outstanding as usual Susan.:clap: Thanks for sharing it.

06-26-2006, 03:46 PM
Hi Susan,

Now, here's what you're going to do : apply acrylic primer for pastels on your bathroom wall. And then paint this in real size being the viewers point of view at 1,5 meters high.
Simply magnificent !



06-26-2006, 10:11 PM
Everyone already said it all Susan!!! Bravo!!! :clap:

Susan Borgas
06-27-2006, 03:43 AM
Gosh thanks everyone! :wave:

Hi Susan,

Now, here's what you're going to do : apply acrylic primer for pastels on your bathroom wall. And then paint this in real size being the viewers point of view at 1,5 meters high.
Simply magnificent !



It might be a bit drafty José ;) :lol:

06-27-2006, 08:45 AM
Hi Susan,

quote : «It might be a bit drafty José »

I liked your answer :-)



Rose Baggs
06-27-2006, 09:01 AM
Wonderful work Susan!!!

07-20-2006, 01:21 AM
Hi Susan,
I checked out your web site and now this thread.
Wow! You are one talented lady!
This piece especially captures me because I love rock so much...
You also paint water to perfection!
Am looking forward to seeing more of your art in the future.
Thanks for sharing!
:) Susie

07-20-2006, 04:48 AM
Susan... I can only say http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Jul-2006/33616-11613-jawdrop.gif :clap: WOW!:clap:

Susan Borgas
07-20-2006, 07:35 AM
Thanks everybody. I have nearly completed my second oil painting since this pastel piece, which I have been posting on my blog. Miss my pastels so will be back soon here with another WIP.

Susie it is lovely to have you on board. There are so many talented artists here at the pastel forum as well as the rest of WetCanvas. I know I have learnt a lot from them myself.