View Full Version : It painted itself - WIP - Finished

Paula Ford
11-26-2006, 06:06 PM
Hi Everybody,

I watched Bob Rohm's DVD on water yesterday and something he said really woke me up. He said, when you take a photo of a landscape you are going to paint, really enhance the colors in the photo before printing the photo and painting.

So, that is what I did with this one. This is a place close by here in the Smokies where my husband and I went fishing a couple of months ago. After enhancing the photo, I went down to my studio and started on it. After basing in the darks, medium values, and light values, I almost threw it away, but something kept saying "keep going, keep going."

The colors are wild...but I think they work. What do you think?

I know the shoreline is off; I'll fix that. I can also see some reflections that need tweeking.

Thank you for your C&C!!! 10"x18", assorted softies.

I wish you could see all the colors and depth this painting has IRL.


11-26-2006, 06:28 PM
Psychadelic Paula! I like it!

11-26-2006, 07:12 PM
OH WOW!!!!!

This is a fabulous painting!!!!!

The rocks have such an illumination to them that radiates out of the painting!!!! it must look wonderful in real life!!!

You truely are a wonderful artist Paula!

Netty :)

11-26-2006, 08:23 PM
Stunning! I'm not sure what you mean when you say the shoreline is off. It looks fine to me. The fact that is bends a bit is better then if it was straight.

The colors are not wild at all. OK, maybe the rocks are a little bit wild, but the foilage is completely natural looking to me. IMHO what makes a great artist is the ability to enhance a scene - either by enhanced color, contrast or composition, etc. and yet still make it look natural. This painting does that!

I think I saw on another thread that you have been an artist only 6 years and worked in pastel for only 3. Excuse me while I say...WOW!!!!! It is now 31 years since I started art school (and began working in pastels) and I would give anything if just once I did a pastel as good as this one (not to mention most of your other ones, too).


Piper Ballou
11-26-2006, 08:33 PM
Paula, this is spectauclar.....the colors are dazzling....ZI like it very much

11-26-2006, 08:55 PM
I have both of Bob Rohm's DVD on water and have learned so much from watching them! This is fantastic!


Paula Ford
11-26-2006, 09:25 PM
UPDATE: What do you think???

David Patterson
11-26-2006, 09:27 PM
Of course you know that I like the vivid colors.:thumbsup: This is really differant for you Paula, I can see why you had to keep going...you had to see how far you could take it. I just caught your revision...I kind of liked the darker colors you had in the background. The rock on the far right looks like it's floating a bit, maybe the shadow needs to be adjusted. I don't know, you're the expert! :D It's still beautiful though!:)


Paula Ford
11-26-2006, 09:35 PM
Here's a closeup too...

Paula Ford
11-26-2006, 09:57 PM
Prettytulips, Netty..thank you so much!!

Don, You are so sweet!! Thank you very much!! You know, my roommate in college, Nazareth College of Rochester!!!, was an art major. I used to love watching her draw. Me? I couldn't draw a smiley face!! LOL

I had great teachers! My first, Kay Walton, in oils, and then Paul Friske, PSA, in pastels.

Thank you all so very much!!

David, I see that rock and it does appear to be floating...will fix it pronto! Also, I didn't touch the colors in the background. It's just the camera.


11-26-2006, 10:14 PM
I really love the warmth from the rocks! The pinks are gorgeous!

11-27-2006, 02:07 AM
too cool !! ... great end result to a different aproach ...

11-27-2006, 03:06 AM
its gorrrrrrrrrggggggggeous

glad you listened to your inner voice...


Mary Brigid
11-27-2006, 04:27 AM
I really like this Paula. I prefer the top right hand corner of the work darkened as you had in the first post. It made those rocks bounce. In your rework of the painting you muted the reflections under the last rock on the right. Thats why it seems to be floating.
Thanks for sharing the info from the dvd Paula. It sounds such a great idea to enhance the colours. I am so glad you kept going with this. It was well worth the effort. Great as usual
Mary Brigid

11-27-2006, 06:08 AM
Lovely painting, Paula, so different. Well done.

Karen Margulis
11-27-2006, 07:46 AM
Wow Paula, it's beautiful! I love your bold colors! Isn't it fun!!! You've had a very productive week of painting and it was fun to see what you've been doing. Thanks for sharing!

11-27-2006, 09:37 AM

The revisions have made it even better! I am in awe! Let us know when prints are available for this and other recent works!


11-27-2006, 09:47 AM
Paula, this is fantabulous. The colors are wonderfully vivid. I've always thought you to be a great landscape artist, but I think this is one of your best.


Paula Ford
11-27-2006, 12:50 PM
mistiaggie, Violet, Dawn, Mary, Marina, Karen, Don, Ronda...thank you all so very much!!


11-27-2006, 01:25 PM

11-27-2006, 06:17 PM
Wow, just beautiful!!!

Paula Ford
11-27-2006, 10:00 PM
Thank you Midge and Holley!!


11-27-2006, 10:50 PM

Very nice!!!!

nana b
11-27-2006, 11:24 PM
Wow! Well worth the money for the videos! Beautiful!

nana b

Shane Keene
11-28-2006, 03:15 AM
Wow Paula. This one really rocks. I love the vivid color and the depth in this. Very different for you but it works wonderfully.

Paula Ford
11-28-2006, 05:25 AM
Sketchcny, nana, Shane, thank you very much!!

Shane, What are you doing up so early!


11-28-2006, 02:20 PM
Well geez Paula, there goes my jaw! Yup, it hit the floor :lol:.

I think this is fantastic! Being a big color person myself, I just love everything about it. Bravo!


Paula Ford
11-28-2006, 02:48 PM
LOL...thank you so much Rain!!


Shane Keene
11-29-2006, 02:58 AM
Shane, What are you doing up so early!


LOL. I wasn't up early, I was up late :). I usually don't sleep until 2 or 3 am. The deep hours of the night are the best time for me to paint or play my guitar as I am completely uninterrupted during this time.

11-30-2006, 12:47 AM
Woohoo!!:clap: what:) fun you had:clap: :clap:

11-30-2006, 01:04 AM
Paula, you have painted a scene in my favorite places on this Earth and captured it beautifully! Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

Selahs art
11-30-2006, 01:54 AM
Stunning painting
I love your colours


Paula Ford
11-30-2006, 01:08 PM
Thank you very much Gerry, Nancy, Retha!!!


11-30-2006, 05:32 PM
Amazing and beautiful. I love it.

11-30-2006, 07:44 PM
Very pretty. A love the colors, so different and appealing.

Paula Ford
12-01-2006, 05:26 AM
Thank you Yvette and Karen!!


12-01-2006, 04:32 PM
Paula, I really like the zingy colors. this is a winner for sure. Yes enhancing the colors in a digital photo, also increasing the contrast is a useful tool. The digis are usually not exposed quite right and are weak in contrast.
I hope we will see more of your work in this style, but also in your usual manner.

12-02-2006, 07:25 PM

Just rented the Bob Rohm dvds and, while his work is impressive, this is much nicer.

Amazingly, even though I have been doing pastels on and off since about 1975, watching Rohm's video was the first time I have ever seen a demonstration of someone doing a pastel. Wow, it couldn't be more different then the way I work! But I was wondering if you are doing a wash underpainting as Rohm demonstrated on 3 of his 4 demo paintings? I know a few others on this site use wash underpaintings. A little info on your technique would be greatly appreciated.


Paula Ford
12-02-2006, 07:32 PM
Hi Don,

Thank you...you're so sweet!

No. I don't use a wet underpainting. Every time I've done that, the paper has buckled so I stopped. Though once in a while I have used Prismacolor markers as a successful underpainting.

I lay down my first layer and then using a triangular makeup sponge, start working it into the paper so that all the white dots disappear. That way the tooth doesn't get filled quite as quickly.

What do you do differently from the way he paints? I'm curious.

Thank you TJ!


12-02-2006, 09:50 PM
I guess, as I have mentioned in some of my other posts, I think more in terms of drawing then painting. By that I mean, I always let some of the paper show through. I don't do anything that would be defined as an underpainting, either. (Although, come to think of it, I don't underpaint when I'm doing an oil painting either!) I guess it is a more direct approach.

Perhaps the biggest difference was the actual process. When watching the Rohm dvds, I could not get over how slow and tentative Rohm's strokes were. As soon as the underpainting was done and he gets out the softies it was one little line here, another there, a little spot here! I would be too impatient! Not to criticize his method or results (he's much better then I'll ever be) but my strokes are done quickly, with force and direction whenever possible, especially when establishing the bulk of the shapes. Perhaps this is because I am not using sanded paper. The papers I use (Strathmore or velour) allow me to use some force and pressure without grinding away my entire pastel in a few strokes!

After watching his dvds, I am hoping to try some underpainting and see how they come out.


12-02-2006, 10:08 PM
A picture is worth a 1000 words...

Perhaps this detail from my post "new landscape on velour" better explains my method (from my last post). I think you can see that the trees (especially the pines) are drawn with quick, bold strokes that represent the movement and direction of the branches. First the mid tone green, then the darker green added (often it is the other way around, dark then lighter). The paper is the grey (actually bluish-grey) immediately around the pines.



Paula Ford
12-03-2006, 09:56 AM
Yes, I know what you mean Don. BTW, I love the colors in your painting!

You know what flipped me out :eek: when he was painting????? After he did that (what I called detailed) underpainting, he mushed it all together with the turp (or whatever it was). It all looked like one dark mess to me. I felt like "why bother!"

Would love to know how long it actually took Bob Rohm to do one of those paintings.


12-03-2006, 02:18 PM

I had the same reaction when Rohm washed his underpainting!! He spent all that time placing reflections and highlights and yes, detailing, and then it was all washed away! It seems like you could get to the wash stage a lot quicker!

I 'm glad you liked the colors in my painting. Since you are the "master of color," I am honored by your compliment!


12-03-2006, 09:13 PM
Hi Paula,

This one is among your best ones.
It has a good depth and those greens (which can be pretty tricky) are glowing without being exagerated.
Now I also want to do a landscape.

Kind regards,


12-04-2006, 05:38 PM
This is gorgeous Paula, the intense colour makes it "larger than life"!

Paula Ford
12-04-2006, 07:44 PM
Thank you so much Josť and Dave!!

I wish you all could see the original. It's so much more than the photo shows.


12-04-2006, 07:49 PM
Thank you so much Josť and Dave!!

I wish you all could see the original. It's so much more than the photo shows.


Well...why don't you send it over ?
After all Xmas is approaching.....:rolleyes:

Kind regards,


Paula Ford
12-04-2006, 07:50 PM
Josť, You're a nut! LOL

12-05-2006, 02:09 PM
I don't often look in this section, its a case of I forget. I do love pastels and have only tried them a couple of times but when I see paintings of this standard, it makes me want to have another go at it.

This one is absolutely beautiful. I'm gobsmacked.

What paper do you recommend for soft pastel work, as I'd love to know


Paula Ford
12-05-2006, 04:52 PM
Hello Victor! Thank you so much...you are so kind!!

I absolutely recommend Wallis paper. Are you familiar with it?


12-06-2006, 06:09 AM
Hi Paula,
No I haven't heard of it but thats to be expected as I haven't had much experience with pastels up until now but I will try to find it at one of the 4 art stores near me. Is there a particular grade I should be looking for.