View Full Version : November Oil Pastel Monthly Challenge
Welcome to the first ever Oil Pastel Monthly Challenge. I will be supplying two photos for you to work from. You can do one or both. Be creative with the images - you can crop them, change colours, interpret them in any way you like. Post your completed paintings in THIS thread for everyone to see. And remember to comment on other people's work. I'm supplying larger versions of each in the RIL for ease of cropping. (Using my photo manipulation program, I was able to create 3 or 4 different compositions from each by cropping.)
July flowers from my garden
Larger version here:
Fall landscape from the Gatineau:
Larger version here:
Hope you have fun with these. I'm looking forward to seeing lots of great paintings. Jane
11-01-2007, 09:20 AM
I am a total newbie and would love to try this.
I have a question though - can I use Art specrum colour fix paper with oil pastels????
Thankyou in advance!
Stacey, Artspectrum colourfix is my favourite support for OPs. It works really well. If you need to make a correction, scrape out excess OP with a razor blade or knife, use a kneaded eraser to pick up more, and then use a bit of odourless mineral spirits or turpentine on a Q-tip to remove the rest. Glad you're joining the Challenge. Jane
11-01-2007, 09:48 AM
One of my favorite papers too. I am really going to try and squeeze in some time for this, Jane. Thanks for the great photos.
11-01-2007, 10:14 AM
THANKYOU for the tips, very much appreciate the advice!!!
11-01-2007, 11:37 AM
I now have my colourfix....so I'll be giving one of these a try this month. Who knows...maybe I'll get to both, that landscape is definately calling my name. Thanks for hosting, Jane and supplying such wonderful ref's.
How exciting to have our very own OP monthly challenge! :clap:
Stacey, Pat and Lori, I'm looking forward to seeing your versions. Jane
11-01-2007, 10:36 PM
I really want to try this! I'm hoping I have time inbetween studying. Is it all right if I concentrate on those blue flowers? I've been wanting to do a blue flower :)
Hi, Serena. I was really attracted to the blue-purple delphiniums too. I got an unfair head-start cause I knew what the photos were going to be. :rolleyes: Here's my painting of them. Sennelier, Holbein Artist, and Caran d'Ache OPs. 6" x 7" on Artspectrum Colourfix terracotta. Jane
11-02-2007, 10:58 AM
Just lovely, Jane. I especially like all the variations of color in the delphiniums.
11-02-2007, 12:24 PM
Wow, Jane. Those are beautiful! Now I have something to strive for :) Out of curiosity, why did you pick a terracotta color for your paper?
Thanks, Pat and Serena. I chose the terracotta because I knew that I would have a fair amount of green in the background and, along with the blue, that would mean an overall cool colour scheme. So I went with the warm reddish paper to counteract that somewhat. Sometimes, in a situation where I know I'm going to have a lot of green foliage but I don't want to paint it in any detail, I use green colourfix. Jane
11-02-2007, 02:19 PM
Beautiful, delphiniums, Jane! Wow!
11-02-2007, 09:34 PM
:clap: jane...that piece is just dazzling!!!! thanks for the brand new challenges ~~~~what a great garden!!!!! tyree :wave:
Reisa and tyree, thanks, and I hope you'll both join in. Jane
11-03-2007, 09:22 AM
Beautiful flowers, Jane! I didn't know the name for them - I don't think they will grow down here in our heat and humidity... I've downloaded both photos, but I think I'll have to paint the lake first - those fall colors are gorgeous!
Becky, thanks. Looking forward to seeing your landscape. Jane
11-03-2007, 07:47 PM
beautiful flowers Jane, but I have to say I am going to miss everyone who does OP's......I have never tried them and am hooked on softies....I am happy for you and Pat and hope your new venture turns out even better than you expected!!!!!
11-03-2007, 07:52 PM
Thanks a bunch, Linda.
Linda, thanks. Sorry you won't be here, but enjoy your softies. Jane
11-03-2007, 10:28 PM
Jane, your painting is really beautiful! I'm also amazed at your background, I always find it difficult to make it detailed and realistic...
Thanks, Tanya. Your comment about the background is interesting in that I wouldn't call the background that detailed. What I did was apply the various greens and yellow greens in larger swatches, in areas primarily based on the photo, but also based on the result I wanted. Then I experimented with adding a few stems, and some strokes in roughly leaf shapes, finishing off the leaves using a colour shaper to improve the shapes, but leaving these a bit undefined. The overall result seemed like a photo taken with a shallow depth of field, with the delphinium and daylily in focus and the background slightly out of focus, so I was happy with it. Jane
11-04-2007, 11:29 AM
Jane, what I ment was that it's a lovely background and it does indeed look slightly blured as you don't want to focus on it, but there's plenty of detail in it (well blured details:)) which I always find hard to depict:) And I can see why you are happy with it!
This is my second Nov. Challenge painting, a close crop of the landscape. It's 5" X 7 1/2" on Dark blue Artspectrum Colourfix. Senneliers, Holbein Artist, and Caran d'ache OPs. Hope to see some of your paintings soon. Jane
11-04-2007, 05:09 PM
This is great, Jan. I love the rocky ledge and pine against the fall colors. You are getting so much done and I know that my time is mostly from January to June to produce. Many tnings happen in the time between, but I am hoping to get a t least a small one done.
Thanks, Pat. This one was fun to do. The dark paper added to the shadows in the evergreen, and in the background. Jane
11-05-2007, 10:54 PM
Great crop on that landscape Jane - my favorite part is the texture of your pine tree. I like the view looking up, too.
I'm afraid the only painting I did this weekend was the painting and cleaning at my son's rental house; we're moving them next weekend, so I'm sure I'm going to ache in even more places. If I did this on a regular basis, I'd probably be in pretty good shape.
I decided that I'd try to get in some time almost each available evening and get some work done on this month's challenge. I spent about an hour blocking in the landscape. My scanner cropped it some - I don't have time to take a photo - it's almost my bedtime. I'll do more progress shots later. This is about 10x13 (but cropped to 9x12 by my scanner).
Mostly Sennelier's, some Holbein's and Caran d'Ache on a sort of beige Canson mi Tientes, rough side:
11-06-2007, 07:21 AM
What a nice start, Becky. I really like the intermix of colors that you have in the trees. I still always marvel at anyone who uses Canson.
I do exercise all the time and still ache.....not sure if constant use makes a difference..:lol:
Becky, good beginning - I'll be watching as it progresses. I admire you for taking on the whole scene. Jane
Here's my final (probably) painting for the November challenge. These are Black- eyed Susans and Blue Veronica flowers. Sennelier, Holbein Artist and Caran d'Ache OPs on 5" X 7" Blue mist Artspectrum Colourfix. Jane
11-08-2007, 07:21 AM
Lovely, Jane and great minds must think alike as that is almost identical to the crop I have....:lol: I love those Veronica flowers, are they a perennial?
Thanks, Pat. I'm looking forward to seeing your version - you do flowers so well. Yes, the veronica is a perennial - I believe this is the Sunny Border Blue variety. Jane
11-09-2007, 09:57 AM
Thanks for hosting, Jane. This took all week, with lots of interruptions, 10-20 min here and there. Its on 9x12 black gessoed canvas paper (acrylic painting paper textured like canvas.)
There's a couple overworked areas, others not enough. But I'm calling it done because I don't have any more time for this. Thanks for looking. C&C welcome.
Julie, great job capturing the entire scene. Everything looks great: the evergreens and rocks have excellent texture and shading, and the birches and the ruffled water read well. The only thing I notice is that the sky looks rather dull grey on my monitor - I think it would enliven the painting if the sky was slightly bluer. It's washed out in my photo, I know, but it was a somewhat sunny day - not that brilliant blue you sometimes get in the fall, but lighter blue with some wispy cloud. Thanks so much for finding the time in your busy schedule to paint this. Jane
11-09-2007, 04:49 PM
Becky - great start
Jane - I love your blue flowers but your trees are excellent. Wow, you did the yellow flowers too! I really like that top one.
Thanks for the comments. I did use gray on the sky because that's what I saw in the reference. But I did catch the fact that the water was reflecting a really nice blue and I did put some blue in the sky that the scanner isn't showing well.
11-11-2007, 12:09 PM
Here's my take on a crop of photo #1. Sennelier (limited palette - 8 colours) on Fabriano Ingres paper, 9x12.
11-11-2007, 12:23 PM
Nice job, Julie and you did the whole thing! I like the colors in the trees. I agree with a little more blue in the sky.
EP - wonderful bold color!!
EP, you did the birdbath/single black-eyed Susan crop I had also thought of, but decided against. I did a plein air of it last year and its hard to get the shapes of the supports right. Love the strong colours you used in your sketch. Jane
11-12-2007, 01:20 PM
Pat and Jane - thank you. Yes that crop is tough due to the shape of the birdbath. I've also printed off a crop of your lake landscape to try. Who knows what kind of wild landscape I'll end up with :)
11-12-2007, 09:44 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Nov-2007/65063-mini_op_landscape_3.jpg i did a cropped mini landscape ..3"x4"...two hours time tonight...ive been very good this year:p :evil: so hopefully santa will bring me some nice op's!!!! :wave:
11-12-2007, 09:46 PM
:thumbsup: :wink2: julie ...i really like the fall colours in yours...nice darks too...~~ep...lively and bright...super!!!! tyree:wave:
Tyree, thanks for joining the challenge. You've painted some wonderfully rich dark blues and reds, which make this quite a vibrant rendition. The one thing I would change - I would make the whitish areas of the foremost evergreen a light green instead. You managed to include a lot of scenery in quite a small space. Well done. Jane (PS: I hope Santa brings you those OPs - you deserve them.)
11-13-2007, 07:00 AM
Wonderful bold color....that's one of my favorite things about OPs, their strong color. (I hope Santa brings the OPs too)
11-13-2007, 12:20 PM
Tyree - thank you. love the bold colours in your landscape!!
I tried to crop the lake scene and use my Sennies but hoo boy it didn't work out AT ALL!! Now, is it the materials (limited palette) or the operator? 9x12 on Fabriano Ingres. I really need to start this over again.
What I like: the rock and the water.
What I don't like: everything else.
EP, I think because Senns are so soft, you need a light touch with them. Do you use a colour shaper or do you just use the OPs? You can get much more control using a colour shaper. Your evergreens would benefit from some shaping. I like a chisel-end colour shaper because it has a flat side for pushing OPs to form a sharp edge, and points at each corner which can be used to form narrow lines like the ends of branches. Jane
11-13-2007, 04:23 PM
Jane has some good advice, but it depends on what you are after. I think there are some nice abstract qualities to this.
I am working on a painting for this challemge. I love seeing what everyone else has done and the parts of the images that they have chosen.
We recently moved halfway across the nation and we are just now feeling settled in, so now maybe I can participate more.
Looking forward to seeing your painting, Annette. Jane
11-14-2007, 06:01 PM
I haven't drawn for quite a long period. Below is my trial for the challenge. The final forms of the trees are not satisfactory.
Anyway, any comments is welcome.
Thank you for your looking.
(from Hong Kong)
11-14-2007, 06:28 PM
Jane - I've been smooshing the Senns directly onto the paper. I don't own any colour shapers but I might if I hit the art supply store on the weekend.
Pat - thank you
Eric - I like how you did the water.
11-14-2007, 06:40 PM
EP- I really like your version of photo #1. I saw that too and liked the flower against the birdbath. I like that despite your limited pallette, you still got the values right. I like the abstractness of your landscape. It may not have turned out the way you intended, but I think it looks great on its own.
Tyree- wow, that is a great colorful landscape. I'll put in a good word for you with my buddy, the Easter Bunny--he's in tight with Santa.
Eric - nice to see your work again. Your water is awesome! Since you ask, your trees could use more darks, maybe outline some branches or darken the lower part of the trees, something like that.
Eric, thanks for joining in. I think you did a good job on capturing the various elements in the scene. Perhaps your yellow trees could use a bit more variation in colour - maybe some brighter highlights. I think your evergreens are pretty good, and the rocks and water are great.
EP, get the dark grey colour shapers, the lighter grey ones are too soft. Jane
11-14-2007, 08:41 PM
All your comments are well received. Thank you very much. It makes me feel that someones really look at the picture and really care.
Eric (Hong Kong)
I agree with the others...your water is great, and your trees could use some more darks for depth. You have lovely, lively strokes.
11-15-2007, 12:12 AM
This is my second attempt on the same scene. I completed it in this morning.
Thank you for all the warm remarks and comments I receive so far. This time the forms of trees seem to be better than the previous one.
Thank you for your looking. Once again, any comments is welcome.
Eric (Hong Kong)
P.S.: After I complete this one, I found there may be some ways to further improve it. However, enough is enough. There won't be third attempt.
11-15-2007, 07:08 AM
I really like this second attempt Eric. The trees are looking quite good and your vivid color makes the scene pop.
Excellent job, Eric. The changes you made make so much difference. The shading and modeling of the front evergreen and the yellow trees is really well done. The landscape format works better, too. It was definitely worth the second try. :thumbsup: Jane
11-15-2007, 11:28 AM
Wow, Eric, that second painting is super! I really like how you got some red/oranges into the yellow trees for accent. I tried to do that on mine but I didn't have the right color in my OP sets...either too transparent or too red.
11-15-2007, 05:53 PM
:clap: :wave: hi eric...lovely work on both,,,i especially like the second one!!!....~~~thanks julie!!!!:lol: :p :wink2: tyree
11-17-2007, 10:48 AM
This is my first post here.
I use a piece 9 x 12 manila paper with canvas underneath taped down to a piece of luan plywood.
I laid in the initial sketch and under painting with student Faber-Castell and Reeves and finished with Sennelier.
Comments and suggestions welcomed! Thank you .
Welcome to Wet Canvas and the Oil Pastel forum, Spellbinder (Jeremy?) :wave: You've created a beautiful, vibrant fall scene. I like your version with the complementary colour scheme - red maples, instead of yellow birches/aspens. Very nice rocks. Thanks for joining the challenge and I hope we'll see lots more of your work. Jane
11-17-2007, 03:54 PM
I'm a new member and currently struggling with switching from soft pastels to oil pastels (allergies). I'm thrilled to find this thread and look forward to communicating with all of you. and thanks for the challenge!
Rick from Raleigh
Welcome, Rick. Have you had a look at the 'Getting Started in Oil Pastel' thread? There's also some info in the Oil Pastel Library that might be of help. Looking forward to seeing some of your OPs. Jane
11-18-2007, 05:28 PM
Here's a progress scan, though it doesn't look as though I've changed that much - I still have lots to do:
I'm about 45 minutes into the flowers - as you can tell I'm somewhat obsessed with the blue flowers....
I'm going to put in some work towards more completion on both of these. Thanks for the lovely photos, Jane!
Becky, it's really interesting to see how you work. Quite a contrast to my way of working (top down as seen in my WIP). Both of these are coming along nicely. Your blue flower is gorgeous already - love the dark background and the crop. It's great to see the increasing definition evolve in your landscape. Looking forward to seeing the end results. Jane
11-18-2007, 07:29 PM
Hi spellbinder, welcome to Wetcanvas and to the oil pastel forum. I like the balance of color in your landscape. Well done!
Becky - they're both coming along really well. I don't know what else there is to do on the landscape, but you're the artist.
11-19-2007, 05:53 AM
Super work, folks!:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
I'm still hoping to find some time to do one of these before the month is up.
Hope you can make it, Wendy. I'd love to see your version of the landscape. Jane
11-21-2007, 03:43 PM
Great work from lots and lots of op'ers. Such a treat to smooch around in. What is alarming me though, is that it's the 21st of the month again, and still I have failed to start either! :o
11-26-2007, 05:59 AM
I am still going to post - just be a bit late, as I am waiting for scanner to be fixed!
Tracy, hope you find the time. Stacey, I'll be looking for yours. Jane
11-26-2007, 11:14 PM
Hi everybody, when I look at all the wonderful depictions I know that I am so out of my depth. I am here because there is no softie challenge this month, I find oilies so hard to work with. BUT I jumped in and made an effort, things went pretty well until I put in the background, oh except for my water being at 2 different depths :lol: .
The colors are off, the browns have turned red and the yellow is not as vibrant in the photo but you get the idea.
Anghwar, I'm really glad you joined us. Your flowers are wonderfully lively and you did an excellent job on the bird bath. Do you have any darker greens that you can add to the background to make the flowers pop? This is really well done and would be worth a bit more effort. Jane
11-27-2007, 03:42 AM
Jane, you are so kind, I had a darker background in but it was a right royal mess and I turpentined it out :lol: , but since you have faith in me I will go back to it and try to make something of this.
11-27-2007, 06:52 AM
I agree with Jane. This is nicely done and a little more work would bring it out. The birdbath is great.
11-27-2007, 04:04 PM
Thank you for your support Pat.
11-27-2007, 07:58 PM
Not quite done, here's WIP
Shirl, you've done a terrific job including the whole scene. The water looks great. You might make the sky a little bluer - it was rather washed out in my photo. Good variety of greens in your trees. Jane
11-27-2007, 08:45 PM
Well I revisited my painting, and it is an improvement but without the right tools it is very dificult to achieve the results, I literally knifed the pastel in, in the background with a painters knife. Methinks Santa is bringing me shapers for Xmas :lol:
Jane I know you talked of these tools in a thread before, could you direct me to them please and also tell me all the alternatives one can use found around the house. As you can see my joins NEED it. And the big E in the right hand corner is for Effort :lol: .
11-28-2007, 07:58 AM
well finally got the chance to get this on the computer and now I can upload it:clap: :clap:
Unfortunetly this is only my third painting in OPs and it really (I mean REALLY) shows...
Uploader not working, will try attachments...
Anghwar, that's made the flowers stand out more. The E can stand for excellent fix, too! I illustrate colour shapers in the thread 'Getting Started in Oil Pastels' at the top of the forum. The Oil Pastel Library has a thread at the top titled 'Show us your Tools' which may be what you're thinking of, as well. Don't forget that your fingers will slightly melt the OPs and help to blend. I don't particularly like getting my fingers dirty, but sometimes that's the best solution.
Stacey, I like your sketch - it's charming. You've done well for an early attempt in OPs. Your colours are lively, yet realistic. Very nice.
11-28-2007, 02:58 PM
Jane thank you so much for your input, I have great respect for all of you who make op's look so good, my op's smell a little and it makes my hands smell too even after I wash them it seems so I try to avoid using my fingers which are way to big as well :lol: .
Stacey I am on my second OP myself and I know exactly where you are coming from but I find your painting delightful.
11-28-2007, 03:31 PM
First of all these two photos are fabulous it was hard to deside which one to use. I decided on the landscape, because I've never done a landscape. I love how the water turned out, but I'm not completly satisfied with the trees in the forground, they need some work. The trees in the background turned out really well, but will probably take this one out and rework some of it. Everyone's work is just fabulous, I love how some chose a detailed approach while others have a more loose style. I can't wait till my month comes. This is done on 5x7 canvas paper, which held the OP better than I thought it would.:clap: :thumbsup:
Very nice, Elizabeth. I love the green in the water and your background trees and rocks are terrific. The foreground evergreens are great too. I think maybe the foreground deciduous trees need a little clarification. A very colourful fall scene, with real impact. Jane
11-28-2007, 06:20 PM
Elizabeth, very nice I like the reflections and the rocks.
11-28-2007, 10:26 PM
THANKYOU for he encouragment,
I can see that I will be addicted to oil pastels, but I have a lot to learn to gain better control and better details.
Q? - are Gallery OPs student or artist quality????
11-29-2007, 07:24 AM
Stacey, I really like your little painting, very bright and sunny. I do believe Portfolios are student grade.
Elizabeth, that is a beautiful landscape , you have really captured the fall colors.
Stacey, they're generally considered to be student-quality. The best professional quality OPs in my judgement, from my experience with the four I mention in my "Getting Started in Oil Pastels thread", are the softest three in order of softness: Sennelier, Holbein Artist, and Caran d'Ache. I have CrayPas Specialist but I don't use them. Jane
11-29-2007, 07:36 PM
Whoa, I nearly missed all the recent efforts.
Anghwar - I love the darkened version, really makes those flowers pop. You can also try tortillions & stomps if your sticks are harder and/or waxier. I've also used a colorless blender (a stick without color) to help me smoosh things around.
lueur - awesome foundation you've got going
Stacey - well done! looks bright and happy
Elizabeth - I love the oranges in your landscape and I agree, your water turned out great!
Tomorrow is the deadline so I put it on here, but I don't really feel that it was finished. I struggled with it and didn't like the gessoed surface as much as I thought that I would. I enjoyed the challenge though:)
11-30-2007, 12:59 AM
Julie, thank you for the comments and for that invaluable info.
Annette, your flowers are lovely.
11-30-2007, 08:01 AM
This is lovely, Annette. I like all the variation in the flowers and their movement, like they are reaching to the light. Was the gessoed surface too much texture?
Annette, this is wonderful. I love your treatment of the background,with the gradation of colour, and your flowers are very cheerful and lively. Jane
Just want to thank everyone who participated in the Nov. challenge. Hope to see you all in Becky's December challenge thread for her great photos. Jane
12-01-2007, 12:12 PM
Oh dear, the month is over and I only had the pictured saved and cropped. Oh well, Jane did the delphiniums for me nicely, and Annette the Susans,same crops and probably painted better . Maybe December.....
Bravo to everyone.
12-02-2007, 05:10 PM
I know I'm late! I'm sorry! I started this early in the month, then life and school caught up with me. It's no where near being finished, but I thought I might post it anyways. I hope nobody minds :)
16" by 20" Clayboard, with sennies and neopastels.
I have no idea what to do with the centers of the flowers, but after my exam tomorrow, I'll tackle it.
Thanks, and sorry again for being late!
12-02-2007, 05:15 PM
What a great take on the image, Serena. Maybe orangy yellow for the centers. How do you like the clayboard? I really like it.
Looking forward to the finish.
Oh, I like what you've done! That blue is gorgeous. Hope you'll post it when it's done. Jane
12-02-2007, 06:40 PM
I agree, that composition and color is terrific, it holds great promise. Please post it when you are done, we would love to see it.
12-04-2007, 11:26 PM
Thank you for all the comments :) I would love to post it when it is done. Do I post it here, or in a new thread?
12-05-2007, 07:55 AM
I'd keep it in the challenge thread Serena.
12-07-2007, 02:08 PM
Nothing like being a week too late! :eek: I finally finished this! I have been watching this thread and their have been some lovely paintings that have really inspired me, but I still have been really slow on this one, with the holiday and all! Hope someone is still watching this thread :wave:
8 x 10 wallis paper
12-07-2007, 02:21 PM
I'm still watching. Looks nice.
12-07-2007, 02:31 PM
Nice bold colors.
Reisa, very nice work on this. I like the crop you used and your colours are great. I particularly like the shading and treatment of the leaf masses in the yellow deciduous tree in the foreground. Thanks for joining in. Jane
12-07-2007, 04:32 PM
Good painting, Reisa. I like your composition and the strong color. The reflections are terrific.
12-10-2007, 11:36 AM
Thanks for the comments Shirl and Anghwar!
Thanks Jane! That particular tree is my husband's favorite part of this painting too:)
Thanks Pat! I really strugled with those reflections! I reworked them several times;)
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