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pastelist
10-31-2009, 09:51 PM
Welcome to the November Pastel Strokes!


Those who have participated in previous months already know the guidelines. For all newbies to this monthly challenge, they are as follows:

* An individual volunteering to host the monthly project proposes to a guide or a moderator a new photo reference near the beginning of the month.

* The guide or moderator approves the host and reference photo(s) and the selected host posts the project in Pastel Talk and also a thread in the Soft Pastel Studio with a link to the Pastel Talk project.

* Interested participants create a painting from the photo(s) and upload it to this thread for viewing and discussion.

* The image may be cropped, rearranged, and interpreted in any manner! Use different effects in your software program and try painting something different, tweak the color, add or subtract things.

* You may paint as many versions and as many photos as you like, and they may be any size.

The first still life seemed interesting because of the varying shapes.

The second still life has a totally different compostion and doesn't that silver bowl make the arrangement exciting.

The third image is a cute and adorable baby to make us smile while we paint.

The fourth image is a picture of a beautiful dog from Australia.

The fifth is a photo of another beautiful child, I chose it for the expression.

I am hoping this month's Pastel Strokes is an enjoyable experience.

Patricia

rgb
11-01-2009, 09:55 AM
Patricia, nice variety of interesting subjects. Thanks!

Ruthie57
11-01-2009, 12:17 PM
Lovely choice of refs Patricia. There are 4 of the 5 that I'd love to do. I'll probably have to settle for 1 though!

Vivien Maloney
11-01-2009, 12:52 PM
Great pics Patricia - can't wait to get started!

Schicchi
11-01-2009, 02:15 PM
I am an art student, and have used pastels. However, I've never had any instruction in how to use them, and I have no ideas of any specific techniques. I want to work more with pastels and I have purchased some, and I've also purchased some pastel brushes. I would really like to know how to use these brushes. They have the brush on one end and the other is wooden and slanted. Any helpful comments would be appreciated. Schicchi

DAK723
11-01-2009, 04:20 PM
I am an art student, and have used pastels. However, I've never had any instruction in how to use them, and I have no ideas of any specific techniques. I want to work more with pastels and I have purchased some, and I've also purchased some pastel brushes. I would really like to know how to use these brushes. They have the brush on one end and the other is wooden and slanted. Any helpful comments would be appreciated. Schicchi
Hi Schicchi! Welcome to pastels! The best thing to do, in my opinion, is just start playing and experimenting! There are many techniques - and it often depends on the type of paper you are using and how soft (or hard) the pastels). You can treat pastels very much like oil paint - painting in layers, working from dark to light, etc. Pastels can also be used as a drawing medium like charcoal or conte. Or you can combine the two!

One thread with a lot of information for people just starting pastel is "stickied" in this thread, but here is a link:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=392571

Generally, any kind of paint brush will just brush away the pastel, but if these brushes are specifically for pastel, then hopefully they won't. I have never heard of a pastel paintbrush, so I am no help there!

Have fun and ask any questions that arise!

Don

DAK723
11-01-2009, 04:24 PM
Patricia,

Very nice photos! I especially like the dog and the strawberries!

Thanks for hosting!

Don

pastelist
11-01-2009, 05:49 PM
Hello,

Dak
Schicchi
Vivien Maloney
Ruthie57
rgb

Thanks for participating in November's Pastel Strokes. This is my first time hosting, but I have been a member of WetCanvas for years. I have participated and have always always enjoyed being among fellow artists. I look forward to being part of this wonderful get together of pastel artists.
:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

kazuki
11-01-2009, 10:07 PM
Great set of pics, Patricia. Count me in for the strawberry one. I'm new to soft pastels and am excited about taking this challenge...
I'll also attempt the third pic, the baby's portrait. That said, I have to check for some tutorials on how to do portraits with soft pastels, coz I have no idea how!!!

rgilmour1970
11-02-2009, 02:22 AM
The cantaloupe in the first image seems to be lurking in the shadows. I think it's up to something.

kazuki
11-02-2009, 03:35 AM
Here's my painting of the cropped up version of strawberries. I was so looking forward to this, so I took out my painting set right after my 1.5 yr old slept.
This is my second ever soft pastel painting, the first being here (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showpost.php?p=8247955&postcount=11). Actually at that time I had no idea that these are soft pastels. I thought I was doing an oil pastel painting!!

I have a set of 24 colors of 'hard' soft pastels. This is a 7in by 5 in watercolor paper.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Nov-2009/109571-Nov09_011_Medium.jpg

A close up here.....
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/02-Nov-2009/109571-Nov09_013_Medium.jpg

Yeah, my silver bowl looks like anything but a bowl. Also, my white is not very sound. I mean, when I apply on top of the grey white doesn't show well. (I was following the oil pastel method of applying light over dark color. Should I change this method for soft pastels???

Comments and suggestions welcome.

SunFace
11-02-2009, 11:18 PM
I am going to try to participate on this! I like the still life and the baby. The dog seems way out of my league!

SunFace
11-02-2009, 11:24 PM
I am an art student, and have used pastels. However, I've never had any instruction in how to use them, and I have no ideas of any specific techniques. I want to work more with pastels and I have purchased some, and I've also purchased some pastel brushes. I would really like to know how to use these brushes. They have the brush on one end and the other is wooden and slanted. Any helpful comments would be appreciated. Schicchi

I am a student too! And I have only being doing this for a couple of months. I learned that you really have to experiment with the papers and brands. There is no other way around it.

There are lots of different papers out there and they all make so many different finishes. In my case I personally do not like much the ones with lots of tooth and I bought some expensive ones and still prefer the velum. But I think I must be the only one!

I never use the brushes, I only use my fingers. (I must be running out of fingerprints! :D ) But i enjoy getting a litttle messy while painting.

There are lots of great resources here and wonderful people! :heart: Just need to read a lot. That is how I got started! Never have had a class in my life expecpt for the drawing course i am taking in school.

I personally started with the pastels, because I find charcoil boring as I love color, and the only other drawing medium I was aloud to use was pastels. And I love them!:cool:

Ruthie57
11-03-2009, 01:15 PM
Kazuki, that Strawberry looks good enough to eat! It's really well done. You may have got more definition in the bowl if your crop had shown the top of it. However, it's pretty good as it is. The base looks convincingly metallic.

Ruthie57
11-03-2009, 03:47 PM
I had a couple of hours to spare today so decided to do the dog. I've been practising loosening up so it seemed a good idea to try doing in 2 hours something which I would normally labour over for 10 or more!

I know it doesn't look like the dog in the pic and things are wrongly placed. This always happens when I draw freehand with not much time! I believe there is a clump of hair near his left ear which IS in the right place :lol:

It was great fun to do though. It's on velour, about 8x10 with Rembrandt pastels.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Nov-2009/189061-IMG_2402small.jpg

pastelist
11-06-2009, 09:54 PM
Kazuki,

Hi and Welcome. I really like your painting. I can't believe it is only your second painting, You have captured what you see. I love working in pastels for that reason. I can continually add more. Have you ever tried sanded paper either by Wallis or Cheap Joe's. That would be for future paintings if you feel pastels are a medium you would like to delve into more,

pastelist
11-06-2009, 09:56 PM
Hi Sunface,

I would love to have you participate. Like my friend tells me "Just Jump In".
Looking forward to viewing your work.

pastelist
11-06-2009, 10:04 PM
Hi Ruthie57,

I love your painting. It is what our eyes see and capture on paper that makes painting rewarding. I love the fact that your painting is not a copy of the picture. I love the expression and the tonal quality as well.

DAK723
11-06-2009, 10:49 PM
I'll also attempt the third pic, the baby's portrait. That said, I have to check for some tutorials on how to do portraits with soft pastels, coz I have no idea how!!!
Sue,

There's a series of lessons right here in the Soft Pastel Talk forum that focus on Portraits. You can find a link here:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=532971

Your Strawberry painting is great - especially as it is only your 2nd pastel painting!

Ruthie, Fantastic Painting of the Dog! Beautifully done!

Don

Merethe T
11-08-2009, 12:14 PM
Kazuki - your strawberry looking good, well done! I painted a still life with strawberries a while back and was surprised at how hard it was to get them right. Yours is nicely done!

Ruthie - lovely dog! I like the expression, nice interpretation of the photo!

etpelle
11-10-2009, 07:04 PM
I picked the dog and it is my first pastel painting attempt. Actually my first attempt at anything in a few years. I quickly sketched the dog and I am sort of stuck at applying the pastel. Do I just block in color at the beginning or should I be trying to "texture" the fur? I can see what I am going to do with the bottom most fur because it's long and stringy, but I am not sure how to make the fur around the forehead and eyes look like fur.

pastelist
11-10-2009, 08:47 PM
Hi etpelle,

When I am painting in pastels, I block my shapes first. I then apply mt textures (Hair). I apply my different shadings, various browns for the dog. I work dark to light. I would apply the hair in strokes. Hope this helps.

Vivien Maloney
11-10-2009, 09:11 PM
Great reference photos this month Patricia! You picked two of my favourite subjects - Dog Portraits and Still Life.
My portrait of the "Australian Shepherd" is 8x11inches, on Fabriano pastel paper, and I used a selection of pastels and pastel pencils, finishing off with Schmincke pastels as they are so lovely and soft.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/10-Nov-2009/196305-img058.jpg

Thanks for hosting Patricia. C & Cs appreciated and welcome.

pastelist
11-10-2009, 10:38 PM
Hi Vivien,

Wow, I love your painting! I love your tones and textures. What a wonderful portrait. I am really glad you liked the selection of photos.
:clap:

Mette Rörström
11-12-2009, 03:39 AM
Hi. love the ref. photos.
Here is one from me....
soft pastel on Ingres paper. 24 x 31 cm.



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Nov-2009/130835-Strawberrys.jpg

Vivien Maloney
11-12-2009, 12:38 PM
Mette; this is great. The reflections on the silver are rendered really well and that lucious, juicy strawberry, - yum!

Patricia; thanks for your kind words about my dog Portrait. I'm glad you liked it.

Ruthie57
11-12-2009, 04:17 PM
Etpelle. I would've given you much the same answer as pastelist. You're on the right track.
Vivien, I love your dog! I too think the texture is great.
Mette. Wow, this is a hard act to follow. I was aiming to do this one next. the metallic sheen is brilliant...in more ways than one!

pastelist
11-15-2009, 09:43 PM
Mette,

What a wonderful painting! Definitely a hard act to follow.

kazuki
11-15-2009, 10:28 PM
Ruthie, That's a lovely dog. I love all those details.

That's a great start, etpelle. I'm myself new to pastels and as you said, sort of new to anything in the past few years LOL. But I'm sure others in the forum are giving you valuable advice. Hope to see the rest of the painting soon.

Vivien, I love the simplistic way you have done the painting, and the choice of paper color. You guys are inspiring me to do it too. I thought I was not an animal painter!

Mette, that's so beautifully done. It's so realistic and I specially love the silver bowl.

kazuki
11-15-2009, 10:34 PM
Thanks, Ruthie, Pastelist, Don, Merethe for the kind words about my strawberry. Looking forward to improve myself.

Don, I'm now going through the lessons on portrait. Oh dear, it's quite long and I'm not sure if I'll be able to complete it by this month so I can paint the baby for this month's challenge. But glad that I found these lessons. I purchased the 5 basic flesh tints of pastels (discussed in lesson 1) last weekend and hope to do the exercises provided. I'll keep posting in the respective threads.

SunFace
11-15-2009, 11:49 PM
OK. So here are my paintings. They are not very good. I found them a little difficult for my skill ... Please remember I am a beginner.

I enjoyed doing the grapes the most. Even though my peaches look like they are up in the air. Any C&C to make them better is welcome.

Thanks for hosting these pics!

kazuki
11-16-2009, 12:33 AM
OK. So here are my paintings. They are not very good. I found them a little difficult for my skill ... Please remember I am a beginner.

I enjoyed doing the grapes the most. Even though my peaches look like they are up in the air. Any C&C to make them better is welcome.

Thanks for hosting these pics!

I love love love your strawberry painting. The silver bowl looks like a pro, given that you are a beginner. The strawberries have a nice water painting look. Love it.

pastelist
11-21-2009, 08:51 PM
Hi SunFace,

I agree with Kazuki. The strawbeery painting is awesome. The vase is the best part. As a beginner you will develop over time and learn various techniques that work for you. That is etched in an artists development. As artists, whatever medium we choose is an extension of what we see and feel about that particular subject. As a beginner I feel you are coming along just fine, don't put unwarranted pressure on yourself to create a perfect painting.

Ruthie57
11-26-2009, 08:46 AM
Well I managed to do another one. My first still life. Hope you like it! 9x11ish on pastelmat.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Nov-2009/189061-IMG_2585.JPGsmall.JPG

kazuki
11-26-2009, 09:24 AM
Ruthie, that's a beautiful one. Love the silver bowl and the table cloth. Well done.

kazuki
11-26-2009, 10:20 AM
Here's my second entry. My first portrait in ages and officially my third pastel.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/26-Nov-2009/109571-nov09_451_Medium.jpg

Again, the proportions are not right and I had a hard time filling up the tooth (water color paper, cold pressed NOT), which I use as an excuse :D

But I have to admit that I'm rather satisfied with this given the circumstances, thanks to Don's series of lessons on portrait and figure fundamentals. In fact, I have only learnt 2 lessons out of the 6 lesson series so far and I did a couple of exercises in that thread and got wonderful response and suggestions from Don.

I am planning to redo this baby in my sketch book, which has texture, but not much tooth, but I used it for my portrait exercises and it worked well. Can anyone tell me if Canson paper works for pastels?

kazuki
11-30-2009, 04:01 AM
Okay, here's version 2 of my second painting. Definitely much better. Any suggestions and C&C welcome.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Nov-2009/109571-nov09_505_Medium.jpg

Hard cretacolor pastels on sketch book.

pastelist
11-30-2009, 10:02 AM
Ruthie,

Your painting is stunning!
:clap:

pastelist
11-30-2009, 10:10 AM
Hi Kazuki,

I love your work. Pastels are a great medium to work with, they are quite is to play with. There are a few changes I would make with your painting. I would lighten a few sections, not completely though, just sections of the forehead to reflect the light in the room. The cheeks and chin as well. The blue on the bib should also be reflecting in the face. It should be an afterglow, lightly applied. You have to expose your palette and have fun with your colors. I think you are on the right track and doing very well. Rae you enjoying working with pastels?

CM Neidhofer
11-30-2009, 01:06 PM
I started the silver and strawberries, but haven't quite finished yet. I'll post a pic of what I have so far later today.

pastelist
12-01-2009, 09:55 AM
Hi Christine,

I can't wait till you post it. Hope all is well.

CM Neidhofer
12-01-2009, 08:45 PM
Sorry, didn't get a pic yet. I'll post it later somewhere. Life is really getting in the way around here lately.