View Full Version : WEEKLY SKETCH THREAD July 2-July 8

07-02-2007, 12:25 PM

Well guys, here I go! You'll be stuck with me for a several weeks for the sketch thread as Paula takes the summer off. So I hope I can get this right and that we have oodles of pages of sketchings!

The Weekly Pastel Sketch thread is for ALL pastelists who use soft pastels, hard pastels, oil pastels, or pastel pencils. This thread is for ALL skill levels.

The idea is to fit some sketching time into your week by completing a sketch in one hour or less. You can sketch anything, whether it be from life or photos. I have personally found it useful to use a kitchen timer. You can even use your cell phone timer!

You can sketch for 5 minutes, or up to an hour, it’s up to you. It's a good idea to time your sketch, keeping it within 60 minutes. You know how time flies when you’re creating! So, get your pastels out, set a timer, and when your time is up, please post your sketches here and share your efforts with us!

Ok folks, lets see those sketches!

07-02-2007, 03:36 PM
Hi Chewie! Thanks for taking over from Paula and hosting the thread! :)

I hope nobody minds, but since I posted my sketch for last week's thread so late last night, I'm re-posting it here. It's a red transistor radio from the early 1960's that I found in a "free" box at a booth at a street fair. The grille on the front is metal but the red part is plastic. It has a leather carrying case with a strap and the radio itself has a little flange on the back that you can pull out to lean it back on (kinda like the back leg of a french easel), although why one would need to do that is unclear. It's very cute! I couldn't believe it, but it actually works!

There are lotsa little flaws in this piece but it was fun to do and I learned about the scratch technique for OPs.

Sketch #32
Red Transistor Radio
OPs on 8x10 newsprint - 1 hour


07-02-2007, 05:42 PM
yeah, the first person to post! (should be an award or something!) this is a cute little radio, amazing it worked!

doing the grille part woulda scared me, you took a good challenge! the plastic part indeed looks plastic. thanks for sharing!

gosh, if i'm hosting, i had better get busy and post a sketch myself as well, huh?!

07-02-2007, 07:22 PM
Chewie...thanks for hosting for Paula.

Annie...what a nostalgic work,,,,,,,I know its just a sketch but think of the market out there for these items.......don't you just love pastels!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Pat Isaac
07-02-2007, 08:32 PM
Hey, Annie, I remember those, what a blast from the past....great job with this and I like your scratch technique.
Thanks, Chewie for hosting this for awhile. I love this thread, and haven't doneanything for a few weeks, maybe not until next week.
Preston...like your new avatar....


07-02-2007, 08:55 PM
As soon as I saw your sketch Annie, I had a big smile on my face. It took me back to my childhood. I remember laying in bed at night, listening to the Vancouver Canucks hockey game on my transistor radio. Now we get upset if the game isn't on HD TV. (or at least I do):lol: Great job on the sketch and thanks for the flash back.

Thanks for hosting Chewie. Looking forward to seeing your sketch.


07-02-2007, 10:02 PM
chewie, Preston, Pat and Doug: Thanks for your comments. Yeah, it is a "blast from the past," and I guess we're all dating ourselves. :lol:

I've looked up the radio (it's a Marvel brand, from Japan) online, and there is a small market for these. Although I couldn't find anything about this specific model, I did find others of the same brand. There are whole websites devoted to collecting vintage transistor radios! I want to keep it though - it's so cute! I'm glad other people enjoyed it too. :)

07-02-2007, 10:38 PM
Annie, My hubby still has one of those plastic red transistor radios. Nice job on it.

Chewie, thanks so much for hosting. This is one of my favorites threads.

I'm practicing eyes this week. Here's my first one: 4x6 Fabizano paper


07-03-2007, 02:25 AM
Hi everyone,

This is my first time in the Pastel forum area. I'm enjoying working in pastels thanks to some "challenges" on the scavenger hunts in the Artwork From Life forum. I admire the pastel work by "wabbit" and "lacey sprocket" :)

I worked on this one from a photo ref in the Pet Portrait thread in the Animals & Wildlife forum.

Simon the iguana
8x12 OPs on manila paper
approx. 60-90 min



07-03-2007, 05:57 AM
Thanks for hosting Chewie.
Nice work so far everyone; that radio got me thinking - my Dad had a black and cream radio with a large dial on the left hand side, coupled with a gold coloured grill on the right. It was only small and it too had a pull out leg at the back to stand on.
I remember well having it underneath my pillow at night listening to Radio Luxembourg, then taking it to school so we could all lay on the playing field and listen the radio at dinner (any Brits remember listening to the weekly charts live on a Tuesday lunchtime?).
Ahhhhh - who'd have thought pastels would have had you all reminisce so??

07-03-2007, 08:17 AM
Hi pastelists,:wave:
Thank you for hosting the thread this week, chewie,

I have posted some replies and comments in the previous week's thread. Please check it.

Your nostalgic cute sketch is nice. The details are by sgrafito? The lights and shadows are well expressed in your keen color-selection style.

You carefully sketched the part of the face. Are you planning to add more? I think this can be a nice portrait.

Welcome to the thread. Pet portrait is a bit rare here. Simon looks like he feels comfortable to be sketched.

Well, I sketched a souvenir from Egypt. Dried date snack. Are you familiar with this? It was the first time for me to try (not only sketching but eating) this. Oil pastels. 30 minutes.

Pat Isaac
07-03-2007, 08:27 AM
Outstanding eye, binkie..well done.
Love the colors in Simon the iguana, eyepaint and welcome.
The texture of that date is perfect, Yusuke and yes I frequently eat those.


07-03-2007, 11:53 AM
hey, great to see so many jumping in! welcome to those who aren't regulars!

the iguana is a fun sight, so much color!

and binkie, your eye sketch has hit the mark well.

i haven't tried dates as a snack really, but know of a fab recipe that uses them in a gooey treat you put on a cracker, with cream cheese frosting, wishing i had some now!

and I'm more than happy to host for a while, gets my behind in gear!

07-03-2007, 01:07 PM
Thanks Pat,
Dates are popular in the US? I thought they are mainly eaten in Mediterranean or Middle East. The taste was quite new to me.

Gooey treat on a cracker... is like a butter? With cream cheese frosting sounds it's like a snack. Anyway, I see there were variety of eating. I saw they were served at the entrance of a mosque in Kobe, Japan.

Well, my sketch again. Simply a potato. 25-30 minutes.

07-03-2007, 01:41 PM
Good grief, you all are busy already!

Annie, nice job on the radio! I remember having one or more like this as a young teenager--AM reception, and lots of static because we were surrounded by hills. Very strange to see things from my not THAT distant youth perceived as nostalgia items or antiques!!!

binkie, the modeling on the nose and eye are lovely!

eyepaint, I love the bright colors you chose for your iguana.

Yusuke, you are amazingly prolific, and I really like the style in your sketches! That date is right on--they grow them here in California, so you see fresh ones frequently in little plastic packs for snacking on--really sweet! I grew up in the Midwest, where (and when) they were less common--we used them in cookies and date bread, mostly. And your potato looks ready to cook!


07-03-2007, 03:51 PM
Binkie: Nice job on the vignette of the face and eye. Good reflections in the iris and the form is well done.

eyepaint: Welcome to the Pastel Sketch thread! I love the color in Simon the iguana! Very creative! The piece has a nice graphic quality to it. What kind of OPs are you using? You might find them easier to use on a paper with a little more texture. Smooth paper won't take many layers. I hope you'll join us again!

Yusuke: A lovely sketch of the date on a plate (rhymes, heh :)). You've captured the wrinkled but slightly shiny surface quite well. The potato sketch is outstanding. There's such a good sense of the light falling across the surface. You have such a terrific sense of values. Good shadow area too, with the subtle reflected light on the lower surface of the potato there. It makes me think, somehow, that you would do well at landscapes. Regarding my radio, yes, details were done by sgraffito - I should have used the proper term! To do it, I found I had to rub most of the black under layer of OP off, leaving only a black stain on the paper, or the colors would later blend with black, but that might just be because I didn't have time for the black OP to set up. Do you have some other effective technique? (I know you use sgraffito.) I'm pretty sure dates are grown in California in the states, where the climate is similar to that of the Mediterranean. I wasn't clear: did you travel to Egypt, or did you buy the dates in Japan?

chewie: The snack sounds yummy!

I remember having one or more like this as a young teenager--AM reception, and lots of static because we were surrounded by hills. Very strange to see things from my not THAT distant youth perceived as nostalgia items or antiques!!!
Libby: The radio isn't the only thing...been into an antique store lately? If you're my age or thereabout, you'll recognize lots of objects from our childhood and teen years! It's unnerving! :lol:

binkie, Pabs, Yusuke and Libby: Thanks for your comments on the radio sketch! :)

I thought I was the only one, but I realize now that transistor radios were a underneath-the-pillow-secret for a few of us years ago. I used to listen to music. :)

Pat Isaac
07-03-2007, 05:23 PM
Yusuke, you are really prolific, and the humble potato takes on a new dimension in your hands. Nice rough surface.
I did this for the sketch thread 2 weeks ago and have put a few more hours into it, but thought I would post the finish. 9x9 oil pastels. Does it count for a sketch that I know I won't get to do this week....:heart:


07-03-2007, 06:31 PM
EP, Welcome! Love your iguana. The colors and style are very southwest.

Pat, Thanks! I'm trying to learn how to make eyes more realistic.

Chewie, thanks for the compliment on my eye sketch.

Yusuke, Wonderful job on the date. As Libby said, dates are grown in California. We have an annual date festival not far from me. It's lots of fun with camel races and of course tons of dates. Your potato looks great! I really like the colors you used. How are you going to prepare it? Thanks for the comment on the eye. My eye sketch is just that. I have a large sheet of paper taped to one of my boards and I'm just practicing eyes and a few faces on it.

Libby, Good to see you here! Thanks for the eye comment.

Annie, Thanks for your remarks.

Pat, Your little girl is lovely! The skin colors are right on, and the hair colors and strokes are fabulous!


07-03-2007, 06:32 PM
Just wonderful, Pat! Such a sweet expression. Terrific job with the OPs on this - you've managed to keep it looking fresh and not overblended, and at the same time to capture the delicate skin texture of such a young person. The skin just glows with life. I love the loose interpretation of the hair too. Thanks for posting it!

Pat Isaac
07-03-2007, 06:38 PM
Thanks, Annie and binkie.


07-04-2007, 11:19 AM
Welcome to Simon, the colorful iguana, and his creator. Pastels are fun because you can do stuff like this.

Hey, Yusuke, nice potato! That looks like an Idaho russet. By the way, my mom used to stuff dried dates with fondant and top with a walnut half. Yum. Your date makes me want some.

LOL, I am old enough to remember when those little transister radios were the latest thing! I like my new version: a solar/windup that keeps me from being isolated when the power goes out (which it does regularly here) and never needs to have the battery replaced. One of these days I'll do a sketch of it.

For now, here is a little sketch I did yesterday. The first rendition took only about 20 minutes, and was quite a conventional little landscape. It kept playing at me, and last evening, I found myself redoing it-- another 15 minutes or so. I like it enough I even named it: "The Other Side of the Hill".

Dayle Ann

Pat Isaac
07-04-2007, 11:33 AM
Oh, I remember dates lke that Dayle Ann. My MIL made them every Thanksgiving.
I like your landscape and it reminds me of the green hills of Vermont, where my sister lives.


07-04-2007, 12:40 PM
Thanks for the compliment and information about dates, Libby. Got surprised to hear that.:eek:

Thanks, I ate the date on a plate at eight and late at night... :) well, yes, I liked the light falling across the potato surface. The room was dark and it was hard to pick the right stick.
Landscape? I tried some with oil pastels but, you know, you need to go out for plein aire landscape before it gets dark. It's hard for me... I usually sketch some after getting home at night. :( But I'll try someday later.
As for the lower layer of sgraffito, I usually use harder pastels for the lower. For example, painting first with Faber-Castell and rub it to fix, and then cover with softer ones like Sennelier. I don't know this is the best way, though... still trial and error.:(
Well, I didn't buy the dates here and I didn't visit Egypt. My parents-in-law have just came back from their travel in Egypt, and this is the souvenir from them. Sorry for the lack of talk...

Thanks. Humble potato as a new dimension? Well, I didn't mean to be Van Gogh.. :)
Your child portrait is great. Thick layers of OPs and careful color selection are quite effective. Especially on the skin.

Thank you. Annual date festival? Camel races?? Wow, sounds interesting. Dates are now a part of the Californian culture.

Dayle Ann,
Idaho russet? Thanks for the name. I didn't know well. The potato is from the small farm of my parents-in-law. Mm, there are many ways to have dates...
Nice small landscape. Do you use any mediums?

Here's prolific Yusuke's next sketch.:lol: It took exactly 30 minutes.

Pat Isaac
07-04-2007, 01:43 PM
A lollipop? great rendering of the twisted paper. Reminds me of the pops I had as a kid with chocolate centers...tootsie pops.
Thanks for the comments on my portrait.

07-04-2007, 02:27 PM
Dayle Ann, lovely landscape. I like all the different shades of green and open space. It's very calming.

Yusuke, I had the same thought as Pat - it's a tootsie pop. Wonderful work on it. The twists and folds are beautifully rendered.

Here's one of the faces I did. About 15 min. 3x3. I call it Grams:


Pat Isaac
07-04-2007, 02:35 PM
Wow, you got all that down in 15 min!!! excellent.


07-04-2007, 08:00 PM
Dayle Ann: Very nice landscape. I love the soft quality and color. It has a dreamy look to it that's really appealing. It's good that you kept going with it.

Yusuke: Re: my landscape comment: I just noticed that the potato had some qualities one would see in a good landscape - namely, good attention to values. Thanks for your tips about sgraffito. You do more or less what I eventually did, except I also wiped off the excess pastel. Maybe I should have used a harder one for the black too. How lucky of your inlaws to be able to travel to Egypt - I've always wanted to myself. Your lollipop sketch is great! I love the way you've done the wrapper and the subtle lettering on the stick.

binkie: It's great that you're really practicing your portraits a lot. I can't believe how fast you did this one, and it's so tiny! I think it must be hard to do portraiture at that size - I find a larger scale helpful. Somehow I have a feeling that you're doing well on capturing a likeness...I think it's that the mouth looks like a very individual element.

Here's mine. I did my sketch this morning, but had to fool around with a bad SD card for a while. :( The photo's off, but the problem is most likely mine, not my camera's. :lol: I tried making some adjustments, but think I still need to learn about the EV (exposure compensation) settings. The blue of the bg is not at all as warm. Orange is a difficult color to photograph accurately anyway. IRL there's a better sense of light shining through the petals in places than this shows.

Sketch #33
Orange Lily
OPs on 9x12 Newsprint

Pat Isaac
07-04-2007, 08:12 PM
I love the bold color in this, Annie. The glass and reflections are right on.


07-04-2007, 08:21 PM
Wow, what a quick reply, Pat! Thanks very much - this was a fun one to do. :) It was really a last ditch effort - this is the very last bloom of my orange lilies!

07-04-2007, 09:37 PM
Annie, your flower is gorgeous! You've captured the delicacy of the petals so well, and your glass is very well rendered. I wish I could paint flowers. Mine lack the delicate transparency you have shown here so successfully.


maggie latham
07-04-2007, 09:50 PM
Hello Everyone,
Some really great art here this week. I am a little busy so won’t be able to post for a while…just wanted to say hi and how lovely your art looks.

07-04-2007, 11:48 PM
Hey, binkie, thanks a lot for your nice comments about my lily.

Here's a secret: this is the second sketch of orange lilies I did this week - the first was of two full stems with probably 10 or 12 lily blooms and a vase all on the same size sheet (9x12) as this sketch. This meant each bloom could be no more than 2" or so across (the stems are quite long), in order to fit everything on the page. It didn't work out at all :o so I didn't post it. But then I tried this: only one lily at a much larger scale. I've always struggled (often in vain :lol:) to get any sense of transparency or delicacy in blooms before, but this worked a lot better. When working small, you don't have as much control (at least I don't). This all may be just a result of my inexperience, but it seems to me, as for portraits, the secret to success may lie in the scale. (Shhh, don't tell anyone the secret! :lol:)

Happy Fourth of July, everyone!

07-05-2007, 03:24 AM
Hi again, I'm still in the experimenting stage with pastels... this paper wasn't very suitable, it was coated with pastel primer ... but I had sanded it intending to draw on it.

a couple of gum trees, 35 mins.


07-05-2007, 09:49 AM
Wow, Mac, and I thought I worked fast! I love the way your loose strokes capture the feeling of being in the trees looking out, and the texture of the trunks, and the way they frame the view of the meadow (or is it a wetland?). Nice capture of the light on the trunks, too.

Reason I hang out here more than anyplace else: a neat way to learn.

Dayle Ann

07-05-2007, 10:51 AM
Yusuke - nice date and plate? I suppose if you tried you could get dates in GB through the year, but they are most prominent at Xmas as a sweet, snack, table decoration type of thing. They come in a sort of elongated oval barge complete with long plastic stick to eat them with. Nice
Pat - a truly great portrait that really captures the freshness and innocence of a small child (before they become naughty, he, he). I especially like the way you've done the hair. I too used to have hair, a long time ago before swimming was invented!!!!!!!!
Nice landscape Snowbound. It reminds me of something you see on a card, or on a PC - I keep expecting something to pop onto the screen. The way you have worked with the greens is very good indeed.
Binkie - what a great character of a face you have managed there, and all in just 15 mins? Is Gram's pleased with it?
AnnieA, that is one heck of a good flower you have done there. I agree with Pat, that the vase etc and shadows/reflections are spot-on. It's a pity so many people have problems with their cameras and getting a decent image to upload. Perhaps we could have some tips from someone??
Yusuke (again) - a potato and a lollipop? Is there no stopping you from coming up with so many imaginative things. Perhaps we should run a weekly thread where we all choose objects for Yusuke to draw???
This has been a great thread so far, and it's only Thursday. A very well done to everyone who has contributed, and to Pabs who has yet to post!!!!!

07-05-2007, 04:42 PM
Mac: Wow, you're a fast learner! Very nice sketch of the gum trees - the bark (color, values and texture) is especially well done. I like the way you apply the pastel in a very painterly manner - are you an oil painter? I'm also curious why anyone would sand down a sanded paper - they tend to be so expensive!

Dayle Ann: You're so right that this is a terrific place to learn! :)

Pabs: Thanks for your comments about my lily sketch. :) I really do need to study my camera manual again. I tend to want to spend my time painting instead of fooling around with the camera, but it does appear it would be worth my time to delve into the camera's capabilities a little more. It has all sorts of bells and whistles that I don't really know how to use. (I have learned some of them. :p) I'll be waiting to see your sketch for the week!

07-05-2007, 05:39 PM
Hey everyone,

Thanks for the welcome. I like bright colours :)

AnnieA - I'm using (up) the student OPs I bought years ago for a drawing course, and I plan to buy some Holbein and Sennelier artist-quality OPs when I use these up. I'm using (up) manila paper from a drawing course. I've got some Canson and some Sabretooth sanded paper and I also bought a pack of coloured pastels papers (brand name escapes me). What do you recommend for paper for OPs? Hmm, I bet if I searched this will have been asked and answered several times already :)

AnnieA - My dad has a pink transistor radio that lives in a brown leatherette case. I like your lily - in particular I like the blue and orange :)
Binkie - great eye and nose (post 8)
Yusuke - great date and spud and candy pop. You're making me hungry :)
Pat - love the portrait
Snowbound - your landscape has a whimsical lyrical feel
Mac - fantastic gum trees and landscape. Wow!


Pat Isaac
07-05-2007, 05:44 PM
Thanks, ep and pabs.
Mac, these are wonderful trees, love the bark texture and receding background.


lacey sprocket
07-05-2007, 07:46 PM
Binkie, great eye study! Filling pages of little studies is such great practice. And wow, you sure got that second picture fleshed out fast!

EP, how nice to see you over here! This is one of my favorite threads. Great iguana!

Yusuke, nice potato, date and sucker! You must have thousands of drawings all over the place!

Pat, great drawing! The nose and mouth are nicely rounded.

Dayle Anne, great composition! Cute little spot.

Annie, that flower is fantastic! So graceful. I agree, it's a lot easier for me to work big, especially on faces.

Mac, I like the bark on your gum trees! Really nice cosy atmosphere. I'd like to sleep in a hammock in that spot!

Once again, I've been running all over the place painting things, and haven't had time for any little sketches, but hopefully I'll remedy that soon! Funny how you have all kinds of free time, then when you find something you really want to do, you end up being called up to work by everyone at once! Looks like it's shaping up to be a busy summer! On Monday I'm going to be helping to finish a life sized styrofoam igloo. The fun never ends!

07-05-2007, 10:47 PM
Thanks Pat!

Annie, Thanks for your comments. I have been practicing faces a lot and am getting a pretty good likeness finally. I'll have to try a larger flower.

Mac, your tress are wonderful. I really like the splashes of color and the way you have rendered the trees to give them dimension.

Pabs thanks!

Lacey, thanks for your comments. I think it is really helping me to do a lot of
more concentrated studies.


07-05-2007, 11:25 PM
this is a lively and busy place! I'm enjoying seeing your work, and thanks for your generous comments on my little ones so far.
It wouldn't be easy putting a hammock between those two trees, they are in a park and I took the liberty of putting them closer together and ignoring the shelter that was between them.
Yes I usually work in oils when I paint... and it is surprising how quick pastels can be... and are so easy to pack up!
Gum trees are great to paint and draw... and they seem to suit pastels too!
The sanded paper... I recycle a lot of my life drawings with a mix of gesso and pastel primer which is good for acrylics, but a bit too coarse if I want to draw withConte pencils... but now that I'm starting to try pastels I'll have to use full strength pastel primer and stop sanding.

another little study, 10 x 8


07-06-2007, 06:07 AM
Hi Mac - and a very big welcome to our modest little thread!!!
Ah, the gum trees; I loved seeing those "ghost gums" when we went to Oz a couple of years back. They really did look eerie in the dark. Went to Adelaide, Port Douglas and Sydney, all of which were awesome, and we are definately going back, it's such a beautiful country. So, you may summise, I like your gum trees!!!
Here's what Pabs has been working on this last week - on and off - I have a pair of dodgy legs which have been playing up over the last few days, so I have not been my usual self - hence my delay in contributing.
I have tried to get into the habit of putting a mount round the work (when I can) just for photographing it as I feel it enhances the finished article; are there any comments on that, or am I being too vain????
Hope you like it.

07-06-2007, 06:51 AM
OK - like waiting for a bus, they come along together, so here's another I have worked on this week (Yusuke please note: this is not a competition!).
This tree study is again on Canson MT, but this time using Derwent pastel pencils. I can have great difficulties at times with trees, so thought I'd go a couple of rounds with them!
Previous work is again on Canson MT, roughly 10"x8" using my usual W&N softies.
Mac - love the fruit.

07-06-2007, 01:10 PM
Thanks for the comments, Pat, binkie, Annie, Pabs, EP and Lacey,

Yes, that was a lollipop. But maybe it has another name since this is a Japanese product. I didn't know about tootsie pops. Thanks for the info.

Your 15 minutes portrait looks as it is the finished form. Great fast sketch.

Ah, now I see. I was misunderstanding... thanks. I also want to visit Egypt...
Your orange lily is nice. I like the way you blended several reddish colors for petals to express the texture and lights. Highlight is effective as well. Of course "your" shadow is excellent as always.
Well, I've heard your secret... wanna see the work. :)

These big gum trees are really deep-rooted (on the ground, on the paper;)). Also the fruits show their presence. Cezanne-like touch and accurate depiction with economy are also nice.
I work in oilpaintings as well. Yes, (oil) pastels are surprisingly quick media. I love them.:thumbsup:

Thanks for another info of dates! They are not grown (maybe) in East Asia so I was not familiar, but I see dates are so popular in the world.
Well, you're also prolific. ;) Bunch of fruits in an oval mat is nicely composed. Tree study is interesting. Looks like an encyclopedia. This will be a landscape?

A life sized styrofoam igloo sounds so interesting. Are you planning to draw it? or paint on it? :D

I have just bought a package of coffee filters so I sketched. It seems like I sketch everything I saw... :p Oil pastels. 40 minutes.

07-06-2007, 01:57 PM
Great plastic bag, Yusuke.

07-06-2007, 02:24 PM
Eyepaint: You use those bright colors quite effectively! What brand of student OPs are you using? There are lots of paper choices for working with OPs, and every artist has their own preferences. Most people find that using a paper with more tooth means the application of the OP is easier and it's possible to use layering. Many people like Wallis and Colorfix paper (both sanded) for this reason. Canson seems to be a problem for many of us (won't take many layers), but some people have great success with it. You might try purchasing some Colorfix primer to apply over that Manila paper you're trying to use up (I'm presuming Manila paper is fairly heavy - I'm not really familiar with it but I'm thinking of "Manila files"). Colorfix primer is painted on and has a slightly sandy surface that seems to work very well with OPs. For these sketches I often use just rough newsprint, but end up kicking myself when I paint something I like because newsprint is not at all archival (it disintegrates because of the acid in it). Thanks for your comments on my radio sketch and the lily. :) P.S. Yusuke makes us all hungry! :lol:

Lacey: Thanks for your compliment. I hope you find the time to paint. What's that about an igloo???

Mac: Gorgeous fruit study! Your work has such a vibrant immediacy to it! Very well done. :) I see now about the sanded surfaces - thanks for the explanation.

Pabs: Lovely study of the fruit. I thought at first I was looking at fruit in a blue bowl, as the oval mat gives that impression. Your fruit have a nice roundness to them and the composition works well. The trees are nicely done too. You've done quite well in describing different types of foliage. I think there would be branches in the front that would partly cover our view of the trunk of the tree. LJW (Jane), our new guide in the OP forum has just done a terrific analysis on painting trees. It's for OPs, but many of the principles apply to SPs too. Here's a link to the thread (Dialup warning! Graphics intensive thread! Worth waiting for it to load, though.): http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=429638

binkie: Practicing really does make a difference, doesn't it? I think my work has improved lots since I started participating in the Sketch Thread.

Yusuke: The filters in the bag are terrific. I love the lettering and the transparent bag is expressed very well. It's really hard to paint something inside something else transparent - you've done an excellent job of it.

07-06-2007, 05:38 PM
Lacey - howdy! Thanks :)
Mac - great fruit - love all the colours in those citrus skins
Pabs - I just bought two mats at the art supply store today to do exactly that - slip it over my drawing/painting to photograph it :) Is your drawng (post 42) in soft pastels or OPs?
Yusuke - you make ordinary things looks extraordinary! Fantastic job on the plastic bag over those filters. What kind of paper do you use?
AnnieA - thank you for the info on the paper. Will need to make another trip to the art supply store armed with your suggestions (I was at the art supply store when you posted your hints!) I don't know the brand of my student OPs - the box is lost and the papers are mostly all peeled off the sticks - they're almost gone - yippee! :)


07-06-2007, 05:40 PM
Another animal portrait - PJ (from the Pet Portrait project on the A&W forum) - OPs on manila paper, 8x10 - 45 min



07-06-2007, 06:35 PM
Mac, Nice job on the fruit. I particular like the way you rendered the orange on the right (looking at the computer) with all its blemishes. Reminds me of homegrown.

Pabs, hope you're feeling better now. I really like your bowl of fruit. Nice colors and the reflection in the bottom of the bowl is great. Since I have so much trouble with elipses I have to ask: Did you use a plumb line or draw that bowl freehand? Nice work on the trees. If you are having problems just drawing trees (graphite pencil) there is a wonderful class on how to draw trees in the drawing and sketching forum.

Yusuke, incredible work with the coffee filters and especially the bag! You used gray paper. Did you let it show through as part of the bag? How about a lesson on doing transparent bags?

Yes Annie, I think I have also improved by practicing with sketches rather than trying to do a finished painting. When I do try a painting again I feel that it will look much better than previous efforts.

:D Annie and Yusuke, Egypt is an interesting country to visit. Just have to share a fun part of my visit to Egypt. It's on my list to paint some day.


07-06-2007, 08:38 PM
eyepaint: What penetrating eyes on that dog! I like the way you've taken the red from his collar and used it subtly in other areas, such as the ears. I guess you'll be doing as many of these as possible, to justify getting the new artist-brand OPs when the student ones run out, huh? :evil: (I don't blame you at all!)

binkie: Oh, how wonderful! When were you in Egypt? How did you happen to travel there??? You look like you're really enjoying that camel ride!

07-06-2007, 10:25 PM
good grief folks, I'm amazed! way to go pastelists!

the lilies look great against that deep blue background, and i think the glass does indeed look glassy.

mac--the gum trees look super! nice texture on them. i esp. like the b/g, its there and gives good sense of place, but very much second place to those trees. and the fruit, wow!

binkie--doing a portrait in a 15 min. span is very couragous indeed! nice sketch. and love that photo of the camel ride, so fun!

snowbound--such a soft feeling landscape, makes a person feel calm and happy

yusuke--i so admire your efforts with such humble subjects! how many sketches do you do a week?

pabs--i dont' mind a bit about the mats on your sketch, i often do that to see if i'm done working on something, i know just what you are saying! i would like to see a bit more modeling on the leaf and stem as you did on the fruit, which i thought you did well. and doing those tree sketches is what carlsen suggests in his famous landscape book--to fill pages of an entire sketchbook with portraits of trees to understand them and not make the same tree over and over in every work you do. good job!

eyepaint--such bold color, i have yet to go that bold, good for you!

this is great everyone, summer is busy and yet you've done well.

07-07-2007, 05:32 AM
EP, our posts must have crossed because I missed your dog in my last reply. I love your dog! It is so alert and lively-looking.

Chewie, Thanks for the comment.

Annie, I was in Egypt years ago. It was part of a cruise of the Mediterranean that I received as a college graduation gift. That part of the world is fascinating and I studied ancient history.


07-07-2007, 10:12 AM
I'm a little late this week, (pant) hurrying to catch up!

Annie, your transistor radio is beautifully rendered and brought back good memories for me. The day my father brought home our families first transistor radio, we were all amazed! I love the gray back round with the vivid red too. Also, your lilly is stunning!

Binkei, Wow! 2 portraits. I'm very impressed. You have a lovely way of rounding your forms and using color here!

Eye paint, great iguana and dog. They both have a very strong graphic quality to them.

Yusuke, As usual you knock my socks off with such humble subject matter. My personal favorites this week are the lolly pop and the package of filters. Wonderful rendering!

Pat, your portrait is endearing! You are so good at capturing details.

snowbound, your landscape is so cool and relaxed.

Mac, your trees and citrus fruit both have a very solid, grounded quality. Lovely bark and colors!

Pabs, beautiful fruit! I love the mat frame too.

This one was done partly from memory and partly from photo refs. My daughter and I walk in a Forest Preserve nearly every afternoon. On this day it was storming like crazy. We are both nuts for thunder storms. I think I need to push that dead tree branch back some more but it captures the quality of light on this day.

lacey sprocket
07-07-2007, 11:58 AM
Mac, nice depth, and I like the blue tones in your shadows.

Pabs, great variety in your trees. The fruit has a kind of graphic flair. Hope your legs feel better!

Yusuke, wonderful transparancy to the bag! It actually feels like there's air within the bag, too.

Annie, yup, it's a giant styrofoam igloo, being constructed of small blocks, for an event. I believe snow cones are to be served inside. I'll post some pictures, when I take them.

EP, I can tell you spent a lot of time on this one, it looks great! Your application of op's is better and better. You're going to love the artist-grade stuff!

Lindsey, wonderful greens!

So, I'm squeaking in the last minute with a bunch of drawings I did with Lara the the coffeeshop. We actually made 2 more, but we gave them away, so I didn't get a photo of them. Too bad, one of them was pretty cool, should've had my camera along. These are all oil pastel, fairly quick, both of us drawing simoultaniously, and with the 6 big sennie sticks I have. So there's a limited palette, which was fun to work with.

07-07-2007, 12:27 PM
binkie: What a terrific graduation gift. Ancient history of the Mediterranean region is indeed very interesting - is that what your degree is in?

Lindsay: Thanks for your comments on my sketches. I guess transistor radios really made quite an impression on all of us, all those years ago, since we all seem to have vivid memories of them. I really love the quality of light in your painting. There often is a moment just before a storm when the light becomes diffuse and everything becomes more intense-looking somehow and takes on a sort of glow and you seem to have captured that.

Lacey: I really would like to see photos of that igloo! The portrait sketches are terrific! Did you and Lara do these as a sort of demonstration for people in the coffee shop, as a part of an art display? And how do you coordinate while you paint? Do you talk to each other - "you do that and I'll do this" - or do you have a routine of some sort down ahead of time? I'm so curious about it - I just find it so hard to imagine working with someone else painting at the same time! What's the "Sans" signature about?

07-07-2007, 04:53 PM
AnnieA, Chewie, binkie, hopalong, and Lacey - thank you :)

binkie - was the camel scratchy?
Lindsay - I like the soft feel of your landscape
Lacey - I absolutely love those jointly created portraits!! If I were to buy a limited palette of those Sennies, which colours would you recommend I start with?


07-07-2007, 05:25 PM
Lindsay, Great sketch! Looks like a lovely place to walk.

Lacey, Love your portraits!

Pabs, I am sorry. I called your mat a bowl. I apologize.

Annie, Yup my degree's in history (social science). Not very practical but I sure enjoyed studying it.

EP - Camels are not soft at all! Don't know if you're old enough to remember hula hoops or not, but that was what it was like to ride the camel.


07-07-2007, 09:52 PM
i'm a tad embarassed--here i'm hosting this and it took me this long for my own post! and i must admit, if it weren't for my situation, i wouldn't have probably gotten round to doing one at all! but here's my efforts, about 20 mins on canson paper, lots of fabers and a few softer ones. any c/c is welcome.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-Jul-2007/6679-stirrup_july_7.jpg

07-07-2007, 11:21 PM
binkie...aaah, another social science person (me too)

...if it weren't for my situation, i wouldn't have probably gotten round to doing one at all! Situation? Is there something I've missed? As far as being last-minute is concerned, I've actually posted with only minutes to spare before the end of the week (I made it a goal to post one sketch per week), so you're doing great - it's only Saturday! :lol:

There's a really nice sense of light in your sketch. You controlled the values well and it has a pleasing loose feel to it.

07-08-2007, 12:06 AM

Great stirrup! You rendered the combo of wood and leather very well.


07-08-2007, 09:38 AM
Mac - really great fruit work. I think it's excellent.
AnnieA - thanks, and I will look up the link to the tree thread. That sounds like a big help. Cheers.
Eyepaint - post 42 is W&N softies; nice dog - is it called Patch by any chance??
Binkie - thanks for the comments and link to the tree drawing, I hope to make it, as I like trees in my work, and round here, there are one or two!!!
Lacey - thank you too - how big are your works? I'm amazed you can turn out so much good stuff with all your work, commissions and exhibitions.
Chewie - nice stirrup, though I have to admit I did not know what it was as I not into horses until someone commented!!! Sorry!!!!
Thanks for all you comments on the trees - I realize there are no "front" branches, and will work on that.
I was retired from the fire brigade on ill-health with my legs, sometime I have good days, sometimes not, but hey-ho!
Hope I've not missed anyone as sometime by scrolling bcak and forth, my reply box goes blank - gosh, how infuriating!!

07-08-2007, 09:42 AM
Yusuke - sorry for missing you out; I love the plastic bag - the bottom right hand corner is just sensational.
Thanks for your kind comments.

lacey sprocket
07-09-2007, 12:51 AM
Annie, we were just hanging out at the coffee shop, although we've displayed our work there twice before. When we work together, usually one of us will start the drawing with an impromptu quick sketch of someone (usually each other), and then we both start in adding color, and making changes. For the most part, we don't make any plans, we just work around each other (some bumping happens, but not as much as you may expect). It's a unique way to work, because you usually have an idea of what you want, but your partner has a different idea, so you end up adapting, to meet somewhere in the middle. Sometimes you seem to be thinking the same thing at the same time (especially after working together for several years), but sometimes you really have to learn to let go, and change direction quickly. It's very process oriented work. I just love it! The reason we sign all of our work together as "Sans" is sort of a long story, but basically, Lara took Japanese for a semester several years ago, and she learned that when you speak to a friend in Japanese, you say Lara-san, or Lacey-san. So we just started calling each other "San", and it was funny to us for a long time, and it just sort of stuck. So, we sign our drawings "friends". We also go by "The Flying Artistas", because I like flying pigs, and Lara likes coffee!

EP, horray for sennies! I think since you work with a lot of bright color like I do, I'd recommend getting your primaries (red, yellow, blue), and white and black, then spring for anything that grabs your eye! My favorites are the yellow green, naples yellow (I use it in most of my skin tones), lt. blue, kelly green, bordouax (makes a great sub for black, and good darks in skin tones), the one they call purple that is really more like magenta, a good orange, man, I like 'em all! I do like those jumbo sticks, and they last so much longer! Have fun at the art store! I think you're hooked, too!

Chewie, oh, it's a stirrup! I'm glad someone else said it, I couldn't figure it out, since I know nothing about horses! Good leather look!

Pabs, aww, Thanks! I'm working 11x14 right now. When you're drawing with a partner, the drawings get done really fast! Also, my work allows me a lot of my own time to work on my art.

07-09-2007, 01:14 AM
Chewie - an interesting texture in your sketch
Pabs - this dog in post 42 is called PJ and belongs to Jody007
Lacey - thanks for the recommendations on the sennies :)

Here's my latest - a cheetah from a WDE hosted by Dominic


07-09-2007, 01:22 AM
EP: Your cheetah has a very cat-like expression. Love those bright colors! The orange of the fur looks terrific against that rich blue background.

Lacey: Your process sounds a lot like improvisational jazz :cool: (I just had to throw that smiley in there - so fitting for jazz! :lol:), but visual instead of musical.:music: :music: It does sound like fun, and I also think it probably takes a special sort of skill to be able to do it. Love the names...thanks for the explanation.