View Full Version : Weekly Pastel Sketch Thread - Sept. 15 - 21

Paula Ford
09-15-2008, 01:27 PM
Hello Artists :wave:

This week's theme is Rocks.

If you don't want to do rocks, that's ok too!! Please feel free to join in with anything you have sketched that was done in less than 1 hour.

The weekly pastel sketch thread is for ALL pastelists of all skill levels who use soft pastels, hard pastels, or pastel pencils.

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.

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!!

WOW! We had another great week last week...check out last week (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=517353)'s thread.

For inspiration, please visit the Image Library (http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/)

09-15-2008, 01:52 PM
Count me in!

09-15-2008, 04:01 PM
I'll try and do it this time. Looks like fun.

09-15-2008, 04:06 PM

Being new here I discovered the weekly sketch thread last week and decided whatever the topic was this week I'd do it. But rocks? *chuckle* Strangely enough as I was biking the other day it occurred to me how lovely the rocks are here in my new home (Colorado Rockies) compared to anywhere I've lived .. and I mean the rocks on the ground, not the mountains (which are, of course, gorgeous). They're all river rocks - smooth and colorful.

It is on, baby.

One hour. H-okay!

(Oh, and I'm a newb at this pastel thing - a refugee from colored pencil and graphite, so far I am looovin' them (pastel pencils, it's like paint in a pencil-shaped barrel!!) - crits very welcome but construction more welcome.. I want to know how to fix the errors I make!)

~~ Boots ~~

09-15-2008, 07:15 PM
OK, I'm jumping right in. This is a rock behind my daughter's house, which I fell in love with the first time I saw it. Never been able to 'capture' it well. Took me just about an hour today. still doesnt do it justice, but better than I have done before with it...

Winny Kerr
09-15-2008, 08:48 PM
I cannot very well enter my big rock from last week can I? Nah.... I guess I'll have to find an other one. Winny

09-15-2008, 09:03 PM
Great job JB...and wow...you are even the first one!

Paula Ford
09-15-2008, 09:30 PM
JB, That looks like quite the HUGE rock! You've done great with it and the landscape around it! It looks like a plein air piece.

Ok you guys, tomorrow night I'll do rocks even though I'm very rock challenged.

WC Lee
09-15-2008, 10:02 PM
very nicely done, JB :)


okie, here is mine .. still using the same six colors I have been using, though it isn't quite right for rocks or in this case, ONE rock :D ...done on recycled YUPO primed with a mixture of gesso and aluminum oxide.


09-15-2008, 10:04 PM
very nice judibelle that is one big rock.
:wave: Boots welcome to pastels and especialy to the Colorado Rockies. :thumbsup:
look forward to seeing everyones work.
I will get one done as promised Paula :lol: :wink2: but remember rocks will be new for me lol.

09-16-2008, 12:17 AM
just a quickie sketch, trying to decide what to work on next. These flowers are actually much darker red, almost a burgundy with yellow and green throats.


And this one is a sketch of my back yard fountain. My dogs think it's their personal water fountain and drink from it all the time. The birds like it too when the dogs aren't around. :)


09-16-2008, 08:27 AM

Albert Handell is my "rock God". I'll try to do him justice. I'm in!

Been away from pastel challenges for a few weeks but this one is a must. Love rocks!


09-16-2008, 02:49 PM
Well, I don't know about the constraints of time! For me, real hard to get something I like in an hour. Probably tried to do too much? I generally feel good about rocks, but not pleased with this. I'll put it up here anyway. Too much paper showing through, but it is a sketch I guess.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/16-Sep-2008/148793-rock.JPG

Paula Ford
09-16-2008, 03:00 PM
WC, Nice pink rocks! I did a painting of pink rocks once. It turned out pretty good, but people picked on me about them LOL...I won't pick on you :evil: :D

Debbie, Beautiful flower and urn! Really lovely work!

Hi Jim, Glad you joined us. I like your rock very much. The addition of the flowers really makes it a lovely piece. Are you using Canson paper?

09-16-2008, 05:12 PM
I just lost a post, I think. If it comes up twice, please forgive me. I cant seem to get it back now.
anyway, want to thank everyone for your comments on my huge (and it is!) rock. the kids really love playing on it!
eglider...I really like your sketch...the rock has a nice flow to it. Good one.
goudburner....beautiful flower! and your jug looks real. Very nice.
WC...your rock looks like a good-sized one also...
Here is my try at rocks along a mountain stream. As you can see, I need a lot of 'learnin'-how-to' do rocks.
that's weird...the picture didnt post. I'lll try again...
well, it didnt post again. anyone else having that trouble?

09-16-2008, 06:14 PM
I just thought about going the 'attached thumbnail' route. we'll see it that works.

09-16-2008, 07:05 PM
JB- Thats one big honkin rock! Good job on the rock and trees. Nice mountain stream with dark wet rocks.

WC- Wow. Those are the same colours as your other sketches? That just shows you what you can do with just a few sticks. Way to go.

Debbie- Good start on the flower. Thats quite a sketch. Nice green urn. Dogs will drink anywhere won't they.

Jim- Nice sketch. I like your colours.

Well here's mine. It's a crop of some river rocks from a photo in the RIL. It's on 9 x 6 Wallis and took one hour. I played with a colour shaper and Polychromos to do some blending.

Thanks for looking.



09-16-2008, 07:23 PM
Hi. Thanks for the comment, and yes, it is Canson. It's not my favorite, but I just wanted something quick so I grabbed an unused half-sheet for the sketch. I usually try to use the smoother side, though when doing a full painting I'll take the time to smooth and blend in. Can't do that very well in an hour, which was a challenge for me. I usually labor over a piece over a week or two, doing small parts at a time. With a challenge like this, which I plan to try again, I need to focus on some essential part of the scene and not try to do so much. A simpler, vague background with more emphasis on the rock, some grasses and simple flower would have been better I imagine. I'll probably try it again and see what happens.

Hi Jim, Glad you joined us. I like your rock very much. The addition of the flowers really makes it a lovely piece. Are you using Canson paper?

09-16-2008, 08:52 PM
I did it - my first pleine aire pastel, learned much, learning even to like rocks! :wink2: This is a fun little pile of rocks that I noticed behind my local grocery store. Not really finished because I stopped (read:was so totally done with this) after one hour. The ground was an afterthought in the last 5 mins or so :rolleyes:

3.5 x 5", pencil pastels:

Things I learned:
1. Dogs do not enjoy pleine aire (they prefer wandering directly in front of you, drooling on your page, or panting three inches from your ear)
2. Ants, on the other hand, really enjoy it (and 'ants in your pants' is a heckuva lot more fun figuratively than literally)
3. Late afternoon with three trees behind you is not a good time and place to do pleine aire (as noted by the lack of a cohesive light direction in my wee piece)
4. No matter how comfy the ground right there looks, it's not!
5. If you are likely enough to do a pleine aire picture that you take some pastels, you also should take some pastel paper (this is done on regular ol' Strathmore sketching paper).

~~ Boots ~~

09-16-2008, 09:28 PM
All good points Boots! But your rocks look great! The things we do for our art. At least you don't have fire ants in Colorado (do you???).

Judibelle, I love the mossy looking rocks in the mountain stream.

Doug, did you get the texture with the color shapers? I've got a couple of those but haven't tried them yet. Your texture looks great!

09-16-2008, 11:25 PM
Here are my rocks...a la Handell.

The inspiration pics were in the library. Great selection!

This was about and hour or less. 9 x 12 Canson black paper. Tried to vary from all greys so , yes, that is purple and some peach there with all the darks.

Critiques welcomed! :wink2:

Yvonne :)

The happiest people don't always have everything. They just make the most of everything they have!

09-16-2008, 11:39 PM
Great paintings everyone.

Boots...your rocks look so real! Really enjoyed your perspective (no pun) on plein aire painting.

Everyone got into the subject matter. Rocks can be so interesting

Can't wait for the next one. I printed out about 5 rock pics from the library. So many good ones! Will try to do them all...just not this week!!! :lol:

The happiest people don't always have everything. They just make the most of everything they have!

Paula Ford
09-17-2008, 06:34 AM
JB, Very nice flowing water with rocks!

Pam, Love your rocks and grass! I also love your lessons learned :lol:

Yvonne, Lovely piece! Beautiful rocks and shimmering water!

09-17-2008, 09:35 AM
Wow, everyone! I love looking at your rocks. They ROCK! *chuckle*

Boots, loved your post! Your name caught my eye as it is the same name as my late father-in-law. Boots. It brought a smile.

I hope to post something soon, seems I caught some nasty flu/cold bug and instead of working on my projects, I have been sleeping round the clock.

Paula Ford
09-17-2008, 09:57 AM
Roma, I sure hope you feel better really soon!!

09-17-2008, 11:36 AM
Nice rocks. I like the simplicity and arrangement.
Yvonne, beautiful piece. Black paper was a great choice for atmosphere.

WC Lee
09-17-2008, 01:28 PM
good stuff everyone :) Yvonne, I really like the contrast in your rock sketch

This isn't part of this week's theme but I wanted to see if I can use the same 6 color for other things other than landscapes, so I used it to do a quickie portrait on black strathmore charcoal paper ..


Paula Ford
09-17-2008, 01:36 PM
WC, This is a fabulous sketch!!

Winny Kerr
09-17-2008, 04:59 PM
Oh I love your rocks Boots, what a cute composition with the grass. Very nice. And Yvonne, it is quite a dramatic painting. The black background was a great choice. As for the portrait, I've never even attempted to do one and I so admire anyone who can. It is lovely WC. Looks a bit like Jackie Kennedy. It is fun to watch everyone's entry, we all learn so much from this forum, it is so encouraging. Thank you Paula for taking the time to host. Winny

Paula Ford
09-17-2008, 09:52 PM
You're very welcome Winny. I've been hosting it for several years and have enjoyed every week.

Here is my sketch tonight. Sorry, but it's not rocks. Sat down to my table and this is what came out. It's my favorite field. 5"x7" on Ampersand Pastelbord. About an hour.


09-17-2008, 10:35 PM
Beautiful, Paula....great colors.

WC ...Stunning! Just how limited was your pallette? The colors are lovely.

Thanks all for the kind words.:wave:


The happiest people don't always have everything. They just make the most of what they do have.

09-17-2008, 10:49 PM
Thanks for the well wishes, Paula.

WC, that portrait/sketch is INCREDIBLE!

WC Lee
09-18-2008, 02:13 AM
thanks Paula, Winny, Yvonne, and blooming :)

Paula: very nice sketch :) but the tree and grass theme was the last two weeks :D

Yvonne: the palette consists of 6 sticks of colors which I been using for the landscape sketches. The colors are simliar to the 6 colors that another artist, whom I forgot the name, uses for a extremely lightweight travel set.

09-18-2008, 10:29 AM
Nice work everyone, Ok as promised here is mine, I think I will call it early morning mist canson and Nupestels 6x9 :) http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Sep-2008/125922-New_landscapes_035.jpg

Paula Ford
09-18-2008, 12:18 PM
Wonderful scene Scotty! I love how it fades off into the distance.

09-18-2008, 10:26 PM
A quick sketch...no more than 1/2 hour...playing with pastels and colors.

09-19-2008, 03:17 AM
I love the deep shadows... all the rocks are great, but I think this one and Yvonne's are my favorites!

~~ Boots ~~

Paula Ford
09-19-2008, 06:20 AM
Linn, Great sketch! I also love those deep shadows. It makes for a dramatic painting when there is that much contrast.

09-19-2008, 08:36 PM
Nice sketches eveyone! Great rocks done by all. (and fields and portraits):)

Well I must have rocks in my head. I haven't had any time to do any painting until just now. I had to had do an English essay for a course I am taking. I left it alone through the summer and now I have to study like crazy so I can finish the course and write the final the first week of November.:p I just started reading "Pride and Prejudice.":eek: The things I get myself into!;)

This is a rock in our neighbours yard. It's 9 x 6 on Wallis and took 35 minutes.



09-19-2008, 10:35 PM
Great rocks everyone...and Doug...this rock is good with all of the different colors in it.

I just got home so no rocks tonight...I had fun playing last night with the rocks...was seeing how many different colors I could add to the rocks. Will probably do more this weekend.

Paula Ford
09-20-2008, 07:25 AM
Terrific rock Doug!

I'm at the gallery today...Polley Crocket Festival at Cowan, TN. Have a great Saturday you guys!

09-20-2008, 05:45 PM
This week's theme is Rocks. Okay! I'll try! I clearly need your rocks tutorial as soon as possible! Critiques are not only welcomed but dearly appreciated.



Shirl Parker
09-21-2008, 12:03 AM
Great rock Jan.

09-21-2008, 01:47 AM

Hi folks.. I just happened onto this thread... & wanted to do something fast before bed.. sooo rocks it is:cat:

09-21-2008, 09:15 AM
Jan...good rock!

T...nice sketch with the rocks and water!

Paula Ford
09-21-2008, 11:12 AM
Jan, I really like your rock. It's got some nice hard edges and the nice warm color is terrific!

Hi T, Welcome to the Weekly Sketch Thread. Wonderful piece! How big is it?

09-21-2008, 01:55 PM
I've been out-of-commission for a couple of days, and WOW some great-looking rocks have come in!
Maw...you said you 'to do something fast.'...how long did it take you? It's a gorgeous sketch!
Jan...love the colors and textures in you rock. Great looking rock.
Doug...super rock! I love what you're doing with the new pastels...your textures and colors are fabulous.
Linn...the contrast of the darks and lights is really nice. Love the additon of the birds, as well...
Scotty...beautiful scene...love the colors and the reflections in the water.
really nice.
Hope I didnt miss anyone....everyone did such a great job. I hope I will be back in action next week...I've done nothing but sleep this week away...

09-21-2008, 05:21 PM
Last minute rock - I want to take advantage of this thread because I may never paint a rock again!!

3.5 x 5", brown canson paper, Pitt pastel pencils
Took about ~ 1.5 hrs this morning.
I didn't skimp on the surrounding grass this time! (but I did mess up the sky)
This is a pretty rock in the back corner of my yard.
I did lighten it a bit in PSP because the scan was dark compared to IRL.


C & C Welcome!!!
(and what is it with the ants and plein aire?!) :mad:

~~ Boots ~~

09-21-2008, 05:31 PM
Thanks Linn, Paula and JB. It was fun to paint it.

I hope you are feelng better next week Judibelle.


09-21-2008, 05:40 PM
Jan- Good job. I like all those Rock colours.

maw-t- Very nice sketch. I like how you continued the colours of the rock in the water.

Boots- Nice detail in this sketch. Good job on the rock but I really like the wood posts.


Paula Ford
09-21-2008, 06:19 PM
WOW Boots, what a lovely sketch. Beautifully done!

Paula Ford
09-21-2008, 07:23 PM
So, what do you guys want next week's theme to be?

Also, I will be gone on vacation to the Adirondack Mountains from October 3rd through the 7th. Would anyone like to host this sketch thread that week?

09-21-2008, 07:28 PM
So, do we have a theme for next week? Like "CLOUDS.":eek: :eek: :eek:

I really think this would be a challenge and with all of us encouraging each other along maybe some of us will lose the "fear of painting clouds.":D


Winny Kerr
09-21-2008, 07:35 PM
I am so cloud challenged and messed up so many times. That would really be a tough one for me. Yikes. Deborah is such whiz at clouds. It would be a good one. I missed this week due to work related time constrains but I did a rock last week so don't feel too bad. Winny

09-22-2008, 12:54 AM
You've seen my nonexistent cloud-abilities ... :(


~~ Boots ~~

09-22-2008, 03:23 AM
Clouds would be FuN! You guys are really doing great here.. rockin'...!
Donna size is about 6x12..."'s
JB, I did it really fast & sloppy..about 15 mins is my guess.

Boots, Nice rock. (words I dont think I have said before now..) :) I think Boots should host!

09-22-2008, 03:29 AM
Called you Donna, Paula.. dont know what I was thinking..
& wanted to say have on your vacation... will you be doing some plein air???

Paula Ford
09-22-2008, 06:37 AM
Called you Donna, Paula.. dont know what I was thinking..
& wanted to say have on your vacation... will you be doing some plein air???

Nope. Going to be too busy and I don't want to bring along a lot of stuff.

Clouds it is everybody. I'll start the new sketch thread around noon today.

09-22-2008, 01:09 PM
Boots, Nice rock.
I'm not quite sure how I should take that! :o

I think Boots should host!
I would - but I'm a newb and have no idea how *grin*. From what I've seen it involves making a fabulous example of the chosen subject - so I'm out right there!

I can't wait to see everyone's clouds!!

~~ Boots ~~

Dot Hoffman
09-22-2008, 07:04 PM
A day late, but rocks are a challenge for me, but nevertheless, here is my contribution. 53 minutes on my egg timer.

Paula Ford
09-22-2008, 07:09 PM
Hi Everybody, Doug is going to host the week that I'm gone on vacation. Thank you Doug!!

Beautiful piece Dot! I hink you should frame it!!

Ok, it's time to start this week's thread. The theme is going to be clouds.


09-22-2008, 07:43 PM
Dot- 53 minutes? Wow!! Beautiful little painting. I agree with Paula. Frame it. Join us this week Dot. We're doing cloulds.:eek:


Winny Kerr
09-22-2008, 09:21 PM
Oh wow Dot, that is very nice. Great colors. Love the rich desert colors, I live in Prescott, Arizona. And you did that in 53 minutes, wow. It takes me an hour just to draw and put down the first layer. That is amasing. Winny

Dot Hoffman
09-23-2008, 10:39 AM
Thank you all for your kind comments. When I took Deborah's class she "forced" us to do some quick sketches.....guess it helped :)

09-23-2008, 08:06 PM
Fantastic sketch Boots! Beautiful rocks and grass.

Dot...gorgeous rocks and painting...you should frame it!