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DAK723
04-01-2010, 12:32 AM
Hello Artists and welcome to the April Spotlight! :clap:

Here is a quick recap of what The Spotlight is all about!

The Spotlight is an activity thread for pastel artists of all experience levels working from photos chosen by a monthly host. Most months, the host will choose photos from only one subject, putting that subject into “the spotlight,” so to speak! For example, one month the subject will be painting water, another month will spotlight flowers, etc.

Some months, rather than spotlight a subject, the focus will be on a challenge of some sort. In those cases, we might have a wider variety of photo references, but “the spotlight” will be on the challenge itself.

Since this is a group activity, we can pool our knowledge and resources, and grow as artists in a fun, “no-pressure” atmosphere. And no critiques unless specifically asked for. The intent is to have fun, try new things, experiment, and perhaps most of all, to see what our friends and colleagues are painting from the same reference material!

Please note: The photos this month are all taken by me. You have my permission to use the photos as reference to create your artwork and to sell them and/or exhibit them. The actual photos, similar to the photos in the Reference Image Library, still retain the copyright of the photographer. So you cannot copy the photo to your blog, for example, without the permission of the photographer, or digitally alter or reproduce the photo for any purpose other than for your personal use, with the exception of crops, digital alterations and posts of these photos within "The Spotlight" thread.

This month, in celebration of Spring in the northern hemisphere, we will put the spotlight on...Flowers!

In our first Spotlight, we had a compositional challenge – experimenting with horizontal, vertical or square layouts. Last month, in our second Spotlight, we had a technical challenge – working with wet underpaintings. This month, we are spotlighting a subject – so no specific challenge, but please feel free to continue experimenting with compositional layouts and with underpaintings if you wish!

Although there is no specific challenge this month, here in the Spotlight one of our objectives is to experiment and have fun in a no-pressure environment! In my opinion, flowers make a good subject to experiment with. Renoir, it is said, used to paint flowers as practice for his nudes! I’m not going to suggest doing that, but I do have a couple other suggestions!

Representational paintings can vary a great deal on how detailed they are and how tightly they are painted. Many of us wish we could paint looser, with a more direct approach and less fiddling with details. Others prefer the opposite. Here’s a chance to experiment with some different approaches!

Here is an example of a painting with lots of details and blended transitions (oil painting by Fantin-Latour):

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-00-latour1.jpg


Here is an oil painting in a looser style by Eduard Manet, with less detail and more unblended shapes:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-01-Manet1.jpg

Here’s a chance to experiment with a tighter or looser approach and see which you like better!

Perhaps, when Renoir was practicing his flowers, he was considering some of the similarities that might exist in painting flowers indoors and when painting portraits or nudes in a similar setting. In both cases, there is a primary subject and a background. Background questions might be the same – what choice of color/value? Is the background one color or a gradation? Are there any details in the background? These questions might lead you to try some additional experiments!

Here are some examples that show different background strategies. Perhaps the simplest strategy is to have a single color or no background at all except the paper itself. This is especially effective when using a toned or colored paper. Here’s one by Renoir (left) and one by an obscure artist named Ketchek (right).

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-01b-renoir_and_me.jpg


Other strategies might involve using warm vs. cool colors or analogous vs. complementary colors. Below, on the left we have a painting by Renoir with analogous color choices – they are primarily from a small portion of the color wheel. The flowers and background are both warm colors. On the right, a painting by Monet, who is using some cooler, more complementary colors in the background. Complementary colors (those opposite each other on the color wheel) are often used to enhance the colors and create vibrancy. I would say that the paintings have a very different mood, primarily because of the different background strategies used.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-02-warm-cool.jpg

Now, those are just some ideas you can play with! Feel free to draw or paint however you wish!

Here are the references. I hope they inspire you! Please post your paintings, sketches, comments and questions in this thread!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-1small.JPG

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89560&size=big&cat=559 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89560&size=big&cat=559)



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-2small.jpg

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89561&size=big&cat=554 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89561&size=big&cat=554)



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-3small.JPG

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89562&size=big&cat=574 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89562&size=big&cat=574)



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-4small.jpg

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89565&size=big&cat=551 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89565&size=big&cat=551)



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-5small.JPG

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89563&size=big&cat=555 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89563&size=big&cat=555)



http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-6small.jpg

For a larger version:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89564&size=big&cat=560 (http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/../RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=89564&size=big&cat=560)


Enjoy!

Turpintine45
04-01-2010, 02:27 AM
Don these photos are gorgeous and your examples very helpful. I am not a flower painter but the colours in these are very tempting. Thanks for doing this. Jen

jaytee
04-01-2010, 07:00 AM
Don.. I read your 'article ' with interest but confess by thought as the first illustrations came up......" Oh NO ... Not roses........! "

Then the three final superb photos appeared..........complete change of heart.....I must find time to paint at least one if not all three, several times !!!
,
Thank you for all the time you must have put into preparing this... especially seeking out the obscure artist ;)

bchlvr
04-01-2010, 07:15 AM
Don...I kind of had the same reaction as Jaytee and then when I scrolled down I saw that there were some beautiful photos and beautiful flowers that I truly like. And best of all they are not landscapes! Yaay! I am in!

Paula Ford
04-01-2010, 09:34 AM
... And best of all they are not landscapes! Yaay! I am in!

:eek: :lol:

Don, Fabulous!! :clap: :clap: :clap: I especially love the one that the obscure artist named Ketchek painted ;)

Ruthie57
04-01-2010, 12:30 PM
Great challenge Don. Thanks for putting such a comprehensive intro together. I have actually heard of the obscure Ketchek and greatly admire him and his work!
I have a very busy month but MUST find time to paint so I will try and do at least one. The roses in the vase really appeal..........

robertsloan2
04-01-2010, 01:35 PM
Don, thank you! I needed something easy this month with Script Frenzy... and I love doing flowers. No-pressure, lets me use all the colors, oh this makes me so happy! I might get at it as soon as today! I like all the references and I may be doing some fun variations on them too, changing style or color or composition or putting in clear vases that aren't there... the possibilities here are endless.

And you brought in an iris, one of my all time favorite flowers to draw! Thank you! These are such great flowers!

jmcedeno
04-01-2010, 03:31 PM
Don, thank you for hosting April'10 pastel challenge, these ref. photos are absolutely gorgeous, this is a great opportunity for me to use my Canson stock of paper which I've had for years but never used it, flowers are my favorite genre besides landscapes.

Vivien Maloney
04-01-2010, 05:02 PM
Oh Don lovely reference photos. Flowers are my favourite subject so I'm definitely in this one.

DAK723
04-01-2010, 06:31 PM
Thanks for all the kind words everybody! I look forward to seeing what we all come up with this month! I had pretty good success doing wet underpaintings last month, so I hope to try some this month with the flowers!

Don

Nansketch
04-01-2010, 07:37 PM
Don, great refs and I'm looking forward to giving these a try. I think I've only done one or two flowers in pastel, so this will be a challenge.

Nancy

robertsloan2
04-01-2010, 08:07 PM
Wow, I didn't expect to be first off the starting line with these! Let alone start with the echinacea -- not always my favorite flower, not into daisyish things. But it grabbed me today.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/70184-Echinacea-Spotlight-April-2010.jpg
Echinacea Vignette
4" square (vignetted ovalish)
Cretacolor pastel pencils
White cartridge paper (sketchbook)
Photo reference by DAK723

Experiments on this one: vignetting to a good shape. Did the background first and got very good outlines drawing it from the negative space. Used a blending brush that I got with my first two Colour Shapers for the first time to smooth out the background, then went over it again because it lightened it too much. Had fun with the texture on the center in near-pointillism with 7 or 8 colors.

Question: are those bright pink flowers from a cherry tree or some other blossoming tree? They're beautiful and I know cherry trees come in a wide variety of colors and shapes, but they also remind me of the plum tree flowers in my sumi-e book.

DAK723
04-01-2010, 08:49 PM
Robert, Very nice! Thanks for starting us off on the right foot! The vignette shape really works to me, as it echoes the shape of the top part of the flower.

OK, plants are not an area of expertise for me - but the bright pink flowers are blossoms from a tree. It is in the backyard of my parents old house, so you would think I would know what they are! I think it is a crab apple. Definitely not a tree that we eat anything from!

Don

chuas2
04-01-2010, 08:54 PM
Echinacea Vignette

Question: are those bright pink flowers from a cherry tree or some other blossoming tree? They're beautiful and I know cherry trees come in a wide variety of colors and shapes, but they also remind me of the plum tree flowers in my sumi-e book.

Not positive about this, but I think cherry blooms are pale pink. I think these are satsuma plum or maybe crabapple? Would love to know for sure, 'cause they're gorgeous!
chuas

robertsloan2
04-01-2010, 09:03 PM
Thank you! Crabapples are cool. I have seen them but not with flowers -- that makes such sense, you're right. They're good if pickled with a lot of sugar, I used to get them in jars and they were really bright red. I'm going to do them whatever they are, they're lovely. And try something a bit different with each flower just to stay in the spirit of the challenge.

bchlvr
04-01-2010, 09:04 PM
Very nice Robert and quick! I love Daisy type flowers.

jmcedeno
04-01-2010, 09:05 PM
Robert, very good and creative, CLAP!

Deborah Secor
04-01-2010, 09:23 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Mar-2010/82335-spot3-3small.JPG

This is a flowering quince....

I'd love to join in, but I may try my hand at my own flower ref photos, if that's acceptable... I have a few I've wanted to get into and just haven't found the time.

Deborah

Paula Ford
04-01-2010, 10:09 PM
Robert, Beautiful Echinacea!!

Turpintine45
04-01-2010, 11:23 PM
I really like how you did yours Robert. The circle in the square looks great and the tuffty thing in the middle just vibrates. You are so good at this.

I am glad you started this but mine looks like rubbish beside yours but anyway here is what I did today 8x10 sanded paper. I did an alcohol wash with pastels in complimentary colours. I didn't have a bright enough yellow and the dark blue underpainting seemed to work against me. Flowers really are not my thing but I loved the bright colours. Jen

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3327_Medium.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3330_Medium.jpg

Ruthie57
04-02-2010, 04:04 AM
Robert, Great Echinacea! What happened to the Bee? (lol)
Yes that's a Quince alright...Chaenomeles japonica
Turpintine. Those Tulips are great. The petals are very convincing and the underpainting has given the flowers some depth.

robertsloan2
04-02-2010, 10:59 AM
Wow, thank you all! Deborah, thanks for letting me know it's a flowering quince. It still reminds me of Chinese paintings, it's so beautiful. Going to be tricky getting that Chinese-painting look in pastels but I might be able to do it working loose.

Turpintine, thanks for sharing your complementary underpainting with your tulips. They're very bold and colourful. I like them. You got the texture of the petals well with those little ripples fanning out from the center rib of the petal. Gorgeous work. Almost reminds me of Charlie's method.

jmcedeno
04-02-2010, 12:14 PM
Jen, love it very nice.

DAK723
04-02-2010, 02:59 PM
This is a flowering quince....

I'Deborah

Thanks Deborah! Yes, old childhood memories are coming back to me now! My father used to make quince preserves from those quinces! No one would eat it but him!

Don

DAK723
04-02-2010, 03:08 PM
Jen,

Your tulips are very nice! The complementary colors of blue and orange really work well together!

Don

Turpintine45
04-02-2010, 09:41 PM
Thank you Robert, Jose and Don. I appreciate your encouragement. Jen

bchlvr
04-03-2010, 07:29 AM
Jen...your tulips are wonderful!

Deborah Secor
04-03-2010, 02:34 PM
I really like how you did yours Robert. The circle in the square looks great and the tuffty thing in the middle just vibrates. You are so good at this.

I am glad you started this but mine looks like rubbish beside yours but anyway here is what I did today 8x10 sanded paper. I did an alcohol wash with pastels in complimentary colours. I didn't have a bright enough yellow and the dark blue underpainting seemed to work against me. Flowers really are not my thing but I loved the bright colours. Jen

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3327_Medium.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3330_Medium.jpg

So true, the complements often fight us, graying or dulling colors put over the top. One thing I've found is that if I search to find the exact same value of color, the complements aren't as much influence. That said, I think the fact that your painting has a nice quiet realistic look to it works very well. I love the bits of orangey color popping through in some incidental spots in the leaves and stems, too. Nice one. :)

Deborah

Nansketch
04-03-2010, 03:00 PM
Robert, great start with the echinacea - nice detail and the bg works well.

Jen, thanks for showing the underpainting -- nice variation in the petals and leaves.

Nancy

DAK723
04-03-2010, 03:29 PM
So true, the complements often fight us, graying or dulling colors put over the top.
Deborah

Deborah, thanks for making this point! It can certainly be confusing - because when working with complementary colors (those opposite each other on the color wheel) we are usually taught two things. First that complementaries can make both colors more vivid and create a sort of vibrancy. The second, as you mention, is that complementaries are used to neutralize or gray a color. Needless to say, these are somewhat opposite characteristics!

So if you are looking for a very intense color, it might not be the best strategy to use a complementary underpainting. Rather, you might want to put the complementaries next to one another. On the other hand, if you want to create a vibrant area (the background, for example) - but one that is a bit grayed or neutralized, then the complementary underpainting might be exactly what you need. Those little bits of the complementary color showing through create a vibration or visual excitement, but on a more subtle level than if more saturated colors are used.

And, as always when working with pastels, the softness of the pastel and the type of paper used will also come into play. The softies, with their greater covering power, might retain their saturation much better over a complementary underpainting than a harder pastel. And the papers with more tooth will allow upper layers to cover better than the smoother papers.

That's my take on it, anyway!

Don

Ruthie57
04-03-2010, 04:18 PM
Deborah and Don, good advice. I often use complementaries to neutralise an otherwise bright colour but I have had the same problem when trying to make a vibrant colour so I don't use complementaries then, except for a shaded area maybe. That works quite well.

I started one today while waiting for my Sister to arrive from London. I have worked an hour on this so far and am posting it as I don't know when I'll be able to work on it again. By then the momentum may well have left me.

I just plunged in with no sketch here and used sweeps and blocks of colour to create the shapes. I started (don't know why) with the top right Rose then worked down and to the left.

This is definitely a bit rough so far but I cannot believe how I have improved. Had I tried to do this a few months ago the flowers would have been completely misshapen and out of proportion. I thought I'd never be able to do anything freehand, let alone without a drawing!

This is on very smooth, very thin, black paper given to me by my art group tutor. Bit like sugar paper only smoother. Can't blend very well on it tho' I blended the BG a little. Can't layer much on it either...

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Apr-2010/189061-IMG_3758.JPG

Turpintine45
04-03-2010, 05:30 PM
Thanks Deborah for the explanation. I had tried a complimentary colour underpainting on the previous Spotlight and it seemed to work well but it was harder with this as the yellow needed to be pure. Still another learning experience. Thanks also for the encouraging words a real honour. Jen

Ruth your roses are beautiful. You have captured a lot in a short time. I was watching the Margaret Evans video Peggy mentioned and this was how she did her flowers. It's a great video. Jen

jaytee
04-03-2010, 05:48 PM
What I love about this forum and this medium is the sheer variety of approaches possible.. .....and no one suggesting one approach is better than another.....

Robert.....Great pollen filled center to your echinacea..... and beauifully drooping petals

Jen... I love the bravery of your underpainting .... and your tulip petals and leaves are really convincing... I sense the texture.


Ruthie your roses are stunning.. cant believe you did them in an hour


I decided to tackle the sunflowers...... which Ive never painting before.... great thing about a new medium is one has no expectations ... ....so I just played about layer after layer. .. for hours!!! I did a WIP which I'll post separately...but here is what I think is the finished article.. much brighter than Id have achieved in watercolour

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Apr-2010/4661-Sunflwer-finis-web.jpg

C&C always welcome..... Ill go post the WIP now... far too long for this thred !

robertsloan2
04-03-2010, 06:57 PM
Ruthie, your roses are fantastic! It is beautiful even at this stage, and I hope you don't rework the flowers when you pick it up again. They're just right. All it needs now is the vase and the rest of the background, the roses are spot on brilliant. They might lose some of that vibrance if over worked. The light on your roses is so strong and gorgeous.

Jaytee, wonderful bright sunflowers! Your style is very different from Ruthie's and more controlled, but I love how you've gotten all those details especially in the centers. Beautiful colors.

bchlvr
04-03-2010, 07:06 PM
Beautiful start on the roses Ruthie! Love the colors!

bchlvr
04-03-2010, 07:07 PM
Great work on the sunflowers Jaytee. Like the light hitting them!

DAK723
04-03-2010, 09:39 PM
Ruth, This is coming along great! I can't believe you got this much done in an hour!

Jaytee, as I mentioned in the "Studio", this is great! Vivid color, nice complementary purples and blues in the background!

Don

Turpintine45
04-04-2010, 12:41 AM
Love the sunflowers always one of my favourite flowers. Great job. Jen

jaytee
04-04-2010, 06:26 AM
Robert, Linn, Don and Jen ..thankyou... Ive been tweaking them thismorning.....as I wasnt happy with the leaves....and someone on PF made an excellent suggestion...... I also found the limits of blending with torchons !!!

Im happier with this - also taken in daylight so truer colour.....

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Apr-2010/4661-fina-final-sunflower-web-.jpg

I just love the way you can go on changing things .... its what I used to do in watercolour.. and what turned them into looking like pastels !!!!

Oh, and I also moved the 'Mat' !!

Ruthie57
04-04-2010, 06:26 AM
Jaytee, those Sunflowers are a wow! I love the close crop and the violet BG and the colours really zing!

Thanks for your comments on mine everyone!

Had a chance to pop out in the studio while my Sister was relaxing so, another hour (slightly less actually) and it's done. I'm really pleased with this, although in the photo the vase looks off a little. It looked OK in real life but probably IS off.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Apr-2010/189061-spotlight_roses.jpg

bchlvr
04-04-2010, 06:39 AM
Wow Jaytee...the daylight (and maybe your fiddling) make a huge difference. You see even more light now...fantastic work on these.

bchlvr
04-04-2010, 06:41 AM
Beautiful work on the roses Ruthie...great light and colors! Yours look much better than the photo of the actual roses.

jaytee
04-04-2010, 06:59 AM
Thanks Linn and Ruthie ..........and R, your Roses are STUNNING... I can smell them from here! Youve captured the essence in a few brilliant strokes. And Im sure the vase is OK... you just tilted the photo Im guessing !! It will look great when you mat it :)

Turpintine45
04-04-2010, 12:21 PM
Jaytee the finished work looks great. The flowers really zing. Jen

chuas2
04-04-2010, 06:49 PM
Beautiful work, Jaytee and Ruthie! The colors in both are perfect. Just the right amont of drama and softness. The sunflowers are starting to make my nose itch though, realistic as they are!

Here's the iris, 9"x5" Clairefontaine Pastelmat. Jury is still out on this paper. It's very difficult to blend on; almost as if it absorbs the pigment. I think it may be a little like velour (which I haven't worked on, but seems like it might be similar). Mostly Rembrandt, Art Spectrum and NuPastel.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Apr-2010/208492-painting_april_challenge_iris.jpg

Judibelle
04-04-2010, 07:07 PM
Exquisite work, you-all!
chuas, Ruthie, Jaytee, Terpentine, Robert....you make me envious with your beautiful flowers!
I went with the dead tree scene...
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/04-Apr-2010/103700-scan0005.jpg_apr_spotlite_tree_trunk.jpg

5x7 on bugra paper
judi

DAK723
04-04-2010, 07:25 PM
Wonderful paintings everybody!

Ruth, Wonderful finish on the roses and vase! You've captured the light and shadow pattern of the rose petals without seeming to fuss over them! Wish I could do that!

Chuas, Excellent Iris! Very impressive!

Judi, This is very nice! But I have to wonder - did you mean to post it in the Landscape challenge for April? They have a reference photo just like this over there! Nevertheless - nice painting!

Don

Judibelle
04-05-2010, 08:15 AM
ooops...I think you're right, Don...wrong place! sorry. Havent started on the spotlight ones yet, then. gotta get things straight in my mind!
Judi

robertsloan2
04-05-2010, 08:42 AM
Judi, even if it's the Landscape Challenge photo, it's got some flowers in and it's lovely. You really captured the feel of that photo. I just grabbed it this morning and coming up here to see yours, I'm grinning ear to ear. The contrasting textures are so grabby in this one, the blended soft background and the sharp textural flower strokes and structural accents on the post and bird house. Very good painting!

Desiree
04-05-2010, 09:09 AM
Great job everyone, you are all off to a great start so early in the month. Robert your echineacia is wonderful
Jaytee, love your sunflowers
Ruthie, great roses, can't believe you did them so quickly.
Hoping to get time to participate!

robertsloan2
04-05-2010, 11:40 AM
Ruthie, didn't jump back to see your roses finish before. Love it. The vase is slightly off but it's subtle, very subtle. It's close enough. I've seen much worse in vases in galleries to be honest. About the only way to get perfect symmetry is to sketch half of it in pencil, trace that half, flip it and transfer it. Freehand there's always something even if it's slight.

The light streaming through it and the stems are wonderful. The roses are still glorious and I'd say the painting's a success, don't worry about the vase!

Chuas, gorgeous iris! Even the stems and buds and whatever that structure's called that used to be the bud are spot on, love this.

robertsloan2
04-05-2010, 12:52 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Apr-2010/70184-Blossoming-Quince.jpg
Blossoming Quince
7" x 9 1/2"
Cretacolor pastel pencils
Brown ClaireFontaine PastelMat
Photo reference by DAK723 for Pastel Spotlight April 2010

Got to this one today. I loved it from the first that I saw it and thought it'd look cool on the brown PastelMat. This is why I love having PastelMat in colors. Yay, no fixative needed!

chuas2
04-05-2010, 01:00 PM
WOW! Love this quince Robert! Works beautifully on the tinted paper. The brown unexpectedly adds to the vibrancy of these blooms. I love the ever so thin highlight on the ends of the petals too. Emphasises the delicacy of the flowers. Good job!
Chuas

granddad
04-05-2010, 01:57 PM
I am not sure I am going to get to do one this month, other obligations, but what I am seeing is Great. Great job everyone. james

tvandeb
04-05-2010, 02:00 PM
Wow, really good ones so far!!!!:clap:

I'm not real good at doing florals, but decided to try the challange for the practice.
I started with the tulips, thinking it would be the easiest, not really.
done on a scrap of velour tan, with underpainting with pastels and alcohol. Layers are done with various soft and semi-soft pastels.:o
Really good challange this month, hopefully I can through all of them.

Ruthie57
04-05-2010, 02:58 PM
Robert, those Quince flowers are glorious! You have caught the Quinceessential (groan!) essence of them. Even the texture of the pastelmat adds to the appeal!
Tammy, the tulips are very well done! i just wonder if adding a few appropriate colour highlights could make them pop from the BG like the leaves do now.
Thanks folks for your comments about my Roses. I would love to do the sunflowers next but not 'til I've finished Hubby's Birthday present. I MUSTN'T be distracted from that!

robertsloan2
04-05-2010, 03:44 PM
Thank you!

Tammy, your tulips are cool. I like the lively strokes on the flowers and I can see a lot of detail there, good leaves, like the background. They are not the easiest! I'll be doing them sometime this month, already made up my mind to, but I won't be treating them as the soft option.

tvandeb
04-05-2010, 03:47 PM
Thanks Ruthie for the comments and tips.
I finished this one a while ago; actually the one I posted earlier and this one I started Saturday, the underpainting with pastels and alcohol blending.
This one was actually easier for me,and I have fun with it, I did the sunflowers, did change the color palette a bit. Done on 8"x 8" velour white, with various soft pastels, semisoft pastels, and pastel pencils. C/C and comments are most welcome. :)

robertsloan2
04-05-2010, 04:08 PM
Tammy, your sunflowers are excellent! I love the clear glass vase and the background really makes them pop. The flowers are so bright and vivid. Wonderful painting.

You inspired me to go ahead and try a tulip in a preliminary drawing -- not all of them and no background, just try for one tulip head to see what I'd get. So I used the limited palette of Derwent pastel pencils that were handy in my pencil cup, just to see if I could do it. I was surprised at how well those few colors mixed. Derwent's six-pack blister packs really are so well chosen for mixing, I love it.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/05-Apr-2010/70184-Tulip-Spotlight-1.jpg
Tulip Study
3 1/2" x 5"
Derwent pastel pencils on white sketchbook paper.

DAK723
04-05-2010, 07:44 PM
Robert, Wonderful job on the quince blossoms! Vivid colors and love the texture on the petals! The tulip sketch is very nice as well!

Tammy, Thanks for joining us! Nice job on the tulips, but an even better job on the sunflowers! Well done!

SunFace
04-05-2010, 11:36 PM
DON BEAUTIFUL PICS!!!!!

I love sunflowers and tulips, so I think I may try one of those this weekend.

SunFace
04-05-2010, 11:38 PM
Wow, I didn't expect to be first off the starting line with these! Let alone start with the echinacea -- not always my favorite flower, not into daisyish things. But it grabbed me today.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/01-Apr-2010/70184-Echinacea-Spotlight-April-2010.jpg
Echinacea Vignette
4" square (vignetted ovalish)
Cretacolor pastel pencils
White cartridge paper (sketchbook)
Photo reference by DAK723

Experiments on this one: vignetting to a good shape. Did the background first and got very good outlines drawing it from the negative space. Used a blending brush that I got with my first two Colour Shapers for the first time to smooth out the background, then went over it again because it lightened it too much. Had fun with the texture on the center in near-pointillism with 7 or 8 colors.

Question: are those bright pink flowers from a cherry tree or some other blossoming tree? They're beautiful and I know cherry trees come in a wide variety of colors and shapes, but they also remind me of the plum tree flowers in my sumi-e book.

I absolutely love this. The colors really seems to draw my attention in such a harmonious way.

Turpintine45
04-06-2010, 02:08 AM
You have all been so busy. I hope to do some more this week.

Chaus Your Iris are wonderful. You have captured the delicate petals with the sturdy buds so well and the blue is perfect.

JudibelleGlad you dropped in to show us your sunny birdhouse.

RobertGreat job with the Quince the colours just vibrate and your tulip is great I can't wait to see what you do with a bigger painting.

Tammy Good job with the tulips, I know they look deceptivly easy. Your sunflowers are greeat too. Jen

tvandeb
04-06-2010, 01:01 PM
Robert, thanks for your comments as well as the others. I missed your Quince Robert, must have posted the same time as I did , or something, really beuatiful love the white highlightlights around the flowers, really makes the reds "pop". :)

robertsloan2
04-06-2010, 02:01 PM
Thank you! These photos are so inspiring I'll probably do all of them by the end of the month. Flowers are one of my favorite subjects. I can never get enough of them from life, so great photos are a joy to me.

Turpintine45
04-06-2010, 09:22 PM
Well I had another go at these flowers. They are certainly not easy but I am learning. I did an underpainting of greens and yellows. 9x12 colourfix paper.
Jen

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3345R_Medium.jpg

SunFace
04-06-2010, 11:02 PM
Jen those are gorgeus!

DAK723
04-07-2010, 07:35 AM
Jen,

Wonderful painting!

Don

Lisa Fiore
04-07-2010, 01:16 PM
Wow, beautiful painting Jen!! I love the softness of it.

Ruthie57
04-07-2010, 01:40 PM
Jen, that's beautiful!! I LOVE the Bee :clap:

mollerman
04-07-2010, 01:51 PM
Wow. Lots of nice paintings...I like them all. I just started my version and it surprised me that I would be painting flowers! I didn't realize just how hard it is doing flowers and I probably won't be doing them again for a while. These photos are great Don. I especially liked the composition of the roses in the vase and blossoming thing-a-ma-jig. I'll get my post in later.

robertsloan2
04-07-2010, 03:06 PM
Jen, those are beautiful! I love your including the bee and the soft background is fantastic. Very effective underpainting even if I can't see it, if that led to some of your choices in the background and the vibrance of the centers on the echinacea!

mollerman
04-07-2010, 05:54 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-Apr-2010/213244-DSCN0798-1.JPG
I really liked the arrangement of the roses and the the look of the Fantin-Latour painting. Although this is a far cry from the Fantin-Latour painting I wanted an antique type look to go with an antique looking shadow frame with an oval matte. Been waiting for something to come along that might fit and this seemed about right. Done on UArt sanded paper which I thought might be a bit too rough and gallery pastels...I think. 8"X10.5". I would have prefered the background were a bit darker and the blues I had used didn't really show up real well in this pic but could have been a little darker in value.

suruchi
04-07-2010, 06:04 PM
Ok, Don, after my pep talk from you this morning, I decided to do one of the flowers on the spotlight. i guess this is the crabapple. it is actually not quite finished but i thought i'd get your comments anyway. also i got my mount vision pastels today and just had to give them a try. so this is a combination of Nupastels and mount vision on smooth side of canson MT.
Dena :rolleyes:

Turpintine45
04-07-2010, 07:35 PM
Maria,DonElizabeth Ruth,[/B Thank you all.
][B]RobertThanks. I'm sorry I forgot to take a picture of the underpainting but it was much as you see it with a bit of yellow green and blue blended on top of the yellow and green alcohol wash.
Marcus thanks for your kind words. I love your roses. You have done a fabulous job for someone who does not like flowers!!You should try some more.
DeanaI love the way you cropped this and look forward to seeing it finished. By the way I think we decided that the flower was Quince. Jen

jaytee
04-07-2010, 08:42 PM
Chuas --wonderfully rich colours in teh falls and bud of your iris

Robert ....your pink flowers( that I cant spell !) positively glow.. great choice of ground colour and your tulip sketch shows great handling of teh limited pallette.. and such elegantly shaped petals to boot

Tammy...your tulips are clearly having a conversation ....love the way they relate to each other and petals of your sunflowers are great

Jen..... I just love your summer-hazy coneflowers and the greedy bee is rather special

Marcus... beautiful roses.. youv'e certainly succeeded in capturing the antique look you wanted

Dena ... good for you... the pep talk clearly worked great shading in the petals...how is the finish coming along with your new pastels?

I hope to do the Iris next.... have been playing with the composition!

DAK723
04-07-2010, 10:17 PM
Marcus, Your roses are great! Absolutely top-notch painting!

Dena, This is looking excellent so far! You've achieved a nice delicacy in the petals and also given them depth and form! I was incorrect in my initial thought that this was a crabapple - it is a quince! Looking forward to the finish!

Don

robertsloan2
04-07-2010, 10:42 PM
Thanks for all the comments on my tulip and quince branch!

Marcus, wow! You sure did capture that antique feeling in your roses. They glow and they have a beautiful vintage softness, the clear vase with its etching is perfect too. I can just picture this in an oval mat in an antique frame, it'd be perfect. Fantastic work.

Dena, your quince blossom is delightful! Love the shading in the petals and the way you brought just one flower into large prominence. Excellent depth and detail.

I might go for the iris next too. I have a feeling this month I may actually do them all, at least in sketch form. I'm way too into doing flowers not to.

chuas2
04-07-2010, 10:57 PM
WOW is right, Dena, Marcus, Jen...everyone! Jen, LOVE the bee, and the the fact that you made a somewhat uninviting flower, quite..well, I can see why the bee is there!

Beautiful quince Dena. Rich and lush. Just gorgeous!

Marcus, what a wonderful painting! I feel like I've just been served some luscious dessert, looking at your painting! :)

On that note, here's my combo platter. I think the beauty of the photographs (thank you Don!) is carrying everyone away in the most delightful way!
Chuas

9"x5" Girault, Art Spectrum, Ludwig and Schmincke on Belgian Mist Wallis.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-Apr-2010/208492-painting_tulips.pg.jpg

robertsloan2
04-07-2010, 11:18 PM
Chuas, that's a brillant combination! I love the background you chose that highlights both the tulips and the echinacea blossoms. Gorgeous. Nice composition too, I like the balance of it. Cool that you put the bee in the way Jen did, that's great.

Turpintine45
04-08-2010, 12:23 AM
Chaus. Love the bea he is such fun to do but your flowers are really gorgeous! The colours vibrate just like Don's beautiful pictures. Great job. Jen

bchlvr
04-08-2010, 07:18 AM
Chuas...WOW! Love the light and love the way you combined the 2 photos for a gorgeous painting!

Jen...yours is fantastic also!

Marcus...beautiful roses!

Dena...lovely close up of your flower!

Loads of other lovely ones also I am sure...will go back and look when I have more time and don't have to get ready for work.

suruchi
04-08-2010, 09:07 AM
Wow!! The work of all of you is just amazing! Just to name a few:
Robert, your quince is so great! Hope mine turns out half as well.
Ruthie, I love the roses and the vase. Hopefully I'll get good at direct painting someday.
Jaytee, those sunflowers! I thought they were great even before your fiddling.
Chaus, great iris. it makes me want to try that one after I finish my quince.

I can't believe how much I learn just from seeing other's work on this site. I love how eveyone is so kind and comlimentary while offering really good ideas on improvement or or other methods. It is so comforting and welcoming for newbies like myself. Thanks to everyone who takes the time to look and post and help us all progress in our art. Such a great nurturing family!
Dena

Desiree
04-08-2010, 09:14 AM
Everyone is doing such nice work, keep it up!

Robert- I love your quince, its glows

Tammy- great tulips

Jen- the sunflowers are wonderful, I love the bee, it adds to the whole feeling of the painting

Marcus- Great job on your roses

Dena- love your quince too!

Chuas- I like how you combined these flowers and the bee! Great job

chuas2
04-08-2010, 11:39 AM
Thank you all! That bee is very fun to do. I can't help but think he'll turn up in some future paintings. He makes for a very good accent. :lol:

Lisa Fiore
04-08-2010, 12:26 PM
Wow, so many gorgeous paintings here!!

Marcus, those roses are stunning! I think roses are so hard to paint, but you did a fantastic job.

Dena, lovely, soft painting. I look forward to seeing the finish!

Chuas, I love how you combined the two photos and came up with a unique and beautiful painting.

Ruthie57
04-08-2010, 03:22 PM
Mark, I LOVE your Roses! Beautifully done and absolutely achieving the look you were after. You must do more Flowers :clap:

Dena, great work on the Quince! Hope you enjoyed using your new pastels. I love new pastels, they are so clean....

Chuas, I just love the way you've combined the Tulips and Echinacea (would never happen in nature as they flower at different ends of the season). They are beautifully done :clap:

I can see I'll have to do the Echinacea now, and the Quince and the Tulips and the Sunflowers and the Iris...............where will I find the time? I don't know!

All the work on here is brilliant and inspiring!

suruchi
04-08-2010, 05:10 PM
Ok so here's my final on the quince. I am really just learning to use pastels and am quite new to the medium. Seemed the more I fussed with this painting, the less I was pleased with it. So on to another flower for the Spotlight! :lol:

robertsloan2
04-08-2010, 05:12 PM
Suruchi, lovely quince! The white surrounding the flowers looks like brilliant backlighting and it's pouring through the loose texture of the foliage too. Good choice not to overwork this -- onward!

20 minute sketch of the Iris in color Conte hard pastels:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Apr-2010/70184-April-Spotlight-Iris-1.jpg
Bearded Iris
6" x 10"
Color Conte hard pastels on paper
Photo reference by DAK723 for April Pastel Spotlight

suruchi
04-08-2010, 06:43 PM
Thanks Robert. Actually the white is a happy mistake I guess. The background was an afterthought because I'm not quite sure yet what to do with backgrounds. More practice!!!! Anyway, I guess I'm on a roll because I decided to do the tulips and here's the result. On reclaimed Wallis Professional, toned a'la Deborah Secor, Nupastels and Mount visions.

suruchi
04-08-2010, 06:44 PM
Robert, BTW, that is a great sketch. Think I'll do the iris next.
Dena

DAK723
04-08-2010, 07:31 PM
Chuas - Nice job on the combined tulips and echinacea! You've got a wonderful intensity to the colors! Excellent!

Dena - Nice finish to the Quince blossoms! Yes, those afterthought backgrounds can be a challenge! One nice thing about pastels (especially the really soft brands) is that they cover so well and can be quite opaque. So, a background can be added and you can bring it right to the edge - or, in most cases, slightly overlap the edge of the foreground objects. Then, because of their opaqueness, you can redefine the edges of the blossoms over the top of the newly added background. The slight overlap will ensure that you don't end up with those "halos" around things! You can, of course, put in the background first - again overlapping slightly the area that the flowers will be in. Or you can do the entire background first and paint over the top of the background. In some cases, though, the background color will still influence the colors you put over the top, so this may not always work if you are trying to get very intense strong colors in your top layer.

Your tulips are great! And no halos with the toned paper! Beautiful!

Robert - Your Iris sketch is a nice combination of line and tone! Lots of color!

Thanks to all who have been complimenting the photos! I've spent many years working on my photo skills along with my painting skills!

Don

Lisa Fiore
04-08-2010, 07:33 PM
Wow, more fantastic paintings, Dena--you are really moving along!

I like your sketch, Robert--nice job for being done in only 20 minutes.

Here is my attempt. I wanted to challenge myself to paint loose, and I put about an hour into it yesterday and everything seemed to "flow" and I felt rather pleased with it. Then today, I went back in and pretty much destroyed the background (mud...), got frustrated, and then lost the looseness I had with the flowers... Oh well, on to the next one! :lol:


http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Apr-2010/133545-4-10_spotlight_wc.jpg (http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/Uploader/upload_image_save2.php#)

Turpintine45
04-08-2010, 07:35 PM
Deana I love how your quince turned out and your tulips just rock. Great job. Jen

Turpintine45
04-08-2010, 07:36 PM
Robert just love those bright colours of yours. Jen

bchlvr
04-08-2010, 08:03 PM
Lisa...beautiful colors and your flowers are great!

bchlvr
04-08-2010, 08:05 PM
Suruchi...your quince is lovely...like your tulips also but the quince is my favorite.

Robert...great colors!

DAK723
04-08-2010, 10:33 PM
Lisa, Your painting is very nice! Not sure what it looked like after the first day, but this looks great! I know - at least for me - that it is always risky to go back in and revise things. I almost always lose whatever was there in the first place! But no matter how many times I learn this lesson, I keep fiddling with my paintings long after they should be finished! It is tough to just let it be and move on to the next one!

In your case, there is no sign that you fiddled too much with it - it looks great!

Don

robertsloan2
04-08-2010, 11:16 PM
Thanks for all the comments on my iris sketch!

Lisa, your echinacea is beautiful. Sorry you lost the loose technique you wanted to use, but it's so lively! It doesn't look overworked at all. The petals look so tangled and natural.

Turpintine45
04-09-2010, 12:37 AM
Lisa I like you flowers and they look very lively so you probably didn't loose anything. Sometimes it is hard to know when to stop. Jen

suruchi
04-09-2010, 10:43 AM
Lisa, great job! I really like the finished painting. I like the airy look you achieved.
Dena

chuas2
04-09-2010, 11:11 AM
Dena, great job on both the quince and the tulips. I'm a pastel newbie too, and have to stress how much I learn with each "ruined" painting. I'm glad you are posting these. You'll get so much support for your efforts, regardless of how you feel about the results!

Lisa, likewise. I would never guess that you were frustrated with this painting at all. I think it's beautiful, and I LOVE the background color; it just glows!

Robert, great bold iris sketch. Wish I had your moxie :lol:
Chuas

btw, does anyone know where Pete is? I've been missing his posts...

Lisa Fiore
04-09-2010, 12:16 PM
Linn, Don, Robert, Jen, Dena and Chuas--thank you all so much for your kind words!! :)

robertsloan2
04-09-2010, 01:06 PM
Chuas, I haven't seen him either. Don't know what's up, hope we hear from him soon and find out!

As for moxie... try doing the iris really fast about a dozen times. Use strong blues and violets. Don't bother with any background unless you do it on green paper and use white and light blue-violets too. Seriously, some of that boldness comes from having done a lot of gesture sketches of irises in the past, and this photo reference is perfect for that sort of thing.

What I haven't tried is doing it with Charlie's method, which might be gorgeous, but I don't know if I want to start something that involved this month while I'm struggling with the script.

tvandeb
04-09-2010, 01:31 PM
Robert: Beautiful study on the tulip. Wonderful start on the iris, love the brightness of the colors.
Jen: Love your coneflowers; very soft look to them-beautiful.
Mollerman: Wow, they look so real the roses , thoght it was a photo, nice.
Dena; Love the lights and darks on the quince and lovely finish. The tulips look great.
Chaus: Love the mixture of tulips and coneflowers- the colors really "pop".
Lisa- Cool color variations on your coneflowers, just beautiful.
I hope I didn't miss anyone, really beautiful variations.:clap: :clap:
Still working on my coneflowers, did the underpainting with pastels and alcohol, hope to have time today to work on it. :)

tvandeb
04-10-2010, 11:39 AM
Had some time very early this morning to work on, and finish the purple coneflowers. Prepare your eyes because I made them very bright, a little different for me. A difficult subject, not as difficult as the tulips though. Done on Yellow velour, conte, and nupastals.:)

robertsloan2
04-10-2010, 01:00 PM
Wow! Super bright coneflowers! Choice of background is wild, this has almost a pop art look with that yellow-green and the purple, but it makes the flowers super bright too. Great bee!

Ruthie57
04-10-2010, 01:10 PM
Suruchi, you're on a roll with the spotlight challenge. Well done on the Quince and even better on the Tulips, they're great!
Robert, I love your freestyle quick sketches and the Iris is no exception.
Lisa, Lovely echinaceas!
Tammy, More great Echinaceas. Like the lime green touch for the BG. Hurt my eyes a bit but I like it!

Well I found time, yesterday and today so here are my Quince flowers. Pastelmat, er, the smallest size pad!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/10-Apr-2010/189061-Chaenomeles.jpg

chuas2
04-10-2010, 02:11 PM
Tammy, great echinacea! Bright, yes but nice and bold.

Ruthie, great quince. Did you get that strange little 81/2 by 5" Pastelmat pad? I ordered one of those and it's tiny! I love the touches of sunlight on the blossoms. Do you like the Pastelmat?
Chuas

suruchi
04-10-2010, 05:55 PM
Robert, really nice job on the quince. Here's my iris. I worked on it mostly yesterday and really wasn't happy with what I had done. Left the room and just got away from it. Went to the Main St. Arts festival today in downtown Ft Worth. Had a chance to visit with three or four really good pastel artists. Came home and worked a bit more on the iris. Still not that pleased but I guess we learn the most from our mistakes, huh? Don, I used your advice on BG's and worked on it as I went. Better, I think.
Dena

Vivien Maloney
04-10-2010, 05:59 PM
Tammy - lovely bright coneflowers

Ruthie - beautiful Quince flowers. I hear you all talking about Pastelmat. Can you tell me who makes it, as it sounds great to work on. I've never heard of it before so I don't think we can get it in New Zealand. Is it like Art Spectrum, which is a gritty surface paper that I usually use as its easily bought here because its made in Australia.

suruchi
04-10-2010, 06:10 PM
ruthie, love your quince!!

DAK723
04-10-2010, 06:54 PM
Tammy - Very Nice! That intense background definitely gives the whole painting a lot of energy and boldness! Nice movement in the petals!

Ruth - Wonderful! You've beautifully captured the light and this is a great example of manipulating focus. The soft background is wonderfully done!

Dena - This is looking good! Irises are quite difficult, in my opinion, as they aren't as "solid" as other flowers - their shapes can be so curving and un-definitive! You didn't ask for critique, but you might look at adding just a few darker values on the green stems to give a bit more feel of light and shadow, as you have done on the petals. And yes, no halos!!

Don

Turpintine45
04-10-2010, 11:42 PM
Tammy I love the bright where are my sun glasses colours. I really livens up the flowers. Great job.
Ruthie Your quince is amazing.
SuruchiI really like the Iris and the back ground is really lovely. Wonderful work. Jen

Ruthie57
04-11-2010, 05:42 AM
Thanks for your comments everyone. Just checked the size of that pastelmat Chuas and it's 9.5x7 so obviously not quite the smallest. That's the last sheet from the pad and I only bought that pad to check out some of the other colours having only used light grey at that time. It is my favourite pastel paper tho I still like sanded ones too.
Vivien, It's made by Clairefontaine and has been available in the UK for some time. It's now available in the US too but don't know about NZ. Hope you can get it. It's brilliant stuff! Apparantly the surface is cork rather than sand. It's quite smooth to the touch but the pile grabs the first layer of pastel tight and it will take several layers. I think there's a thread about it in pastel talk somewhere and there are quite a few reviews on the internet. I believe Deborah secor has done one.

Suruchi. Great attempt at the Iris. As Don said, they are difficult.

robertsloan2
04-11-2010, 08:13 AM
Ruthie, I have that pad and it's a great size. Your quince are incredible! The light pouring through them makes me smile and the depth in it is fantastic. Lovely realism. Perfect quince. Now I'm embarrassed I just let mine float on the brown background, though I was trying for almost a Chinese painting look.

Suruchi, don't beat yourself up about this lovely iris! Yes, there are a couple of shifts in what the petals are doing but they just look as if a bit of wind blew to move a petal. I'm not kidding, this is accurate. Nice soft shading, good crinkles, that bud is spectacular, the whole thing is good. I like your choice of soft dawn color background too. If it didn't come out as you intended, then yeah, try it again in another style. But it's lovely as it is. Don't toss this one in order to try again, ok?

suruchi
04-11-2010, 09:06 AM
Ah, Robert. so comforting to get up in the morning and see that you have already been here with a kind and encouraging message.
Dena

Ruthie57
04-11-2010, 12:05 PM
Thank you Robert! As I said before your Quince is great and, yes, it does have a flavour of the Chinese painting look. The plain paper bg complements it really well. Whereas you use your imagination to enhance the ref you paint I cannot seem to get away from religious copying of a photo, albeit my style is a bit freer than it was.

Nansketch
04-11-2010, 09:56 PM
Gosh, I missed a couple of days and everyone here has been working --- wonderful work from everyone.

Jaytee -- wonderful shading on your sunflowers
Ruthie- your roses are beautiful -- I envy your ability to freehand them -- wonderful. the quince - wow - gorgegous colors!
Chaus -- love the iris --lovely shapes and variations. And the second work -- beautiful light!
Robert, your sketches are great -- I wish I was that disciplined - I'm sure it really helps when you start painting. The quince is beautiful, love the branch
Tammy - I was interested to see your work and that you underpainted on velour. I just tried a piece -- not sure I like it. Your's is wonderful both the tulips and sunflowers.

Jen - coneflowers --- WOW !!!

Marcus-Wonderful feel to this -- love the finish on the vase

Suruchi- good job on the tulips and a lovely soft look on the quince.

Lisa, -- your coneflowers are wonderful and I LOVE the background --

Great job everyone.
Nancy

robertsloan2
04-11-2010, 11:32 PM
Thank you! Wow, it hasn't even been that many weeks but I think this focusing on sketching actually is helping with more serious works already.

Ruthie57
04-12-2010, 01:36 PM
Today I've been working on a double Koi "portrait" for hubby's Birthday (I've got a wip in the gallery and still need help if you're interested).

But he's self employed and I never know what time he'll be home. At about 2.30 I got a bit twitchy so put the Koi paintings away. Then I had to start something else which may have looked to him as if I'd been working on it all day!

So I did the Sunflower pic and tried to do it loose and painterly or whatever you call it. Completely out of my comfort zone here. I only had an hour as I had other things to do. I've realised loose doesn't mean fast!

I'm NOT happy with how this turned out. I have a long way to go to work on any changes to my "natural" style!

Hubby got home at 3.30 by the way.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Apr-2010/189061-IMG_3867.JPG

robertsloan2
04-12-2010, 01:43 PM
Ruthie, your sunflowers are beautiful. I know what you mean, loose isn't always fast. It's hard trying out a different style, but always rewarding.

Nansketch
04-12-2010, 08:27 PM
Ruthie- Congratulations for trying a new style, always good to try something new -- I like the flowers and the glass/water look very good.

For me - it is all new and not sure what I'm comfortable with. So, I've been working on the iris. I tried 3 versions . . . all 9x12 -- photos are a little fuzzy, no sunlight by the time I got home from work, sorry.

Would love to hear your thoughts -- I feel torn between wanting to put in every detail/line and then trying to stay loose. My printed copies always look a bit different than the online photo, but I went with what I printed -- so some areas are brighter with more colors
#1 - mi-tients, white paper -
#2 - tan velour - first try on velour --seemed to deaden the colors - couldn't get any vibrancy -- otherwise I liked working on it but I like bright color
#3 - tan ampersand pastelboard -- I like this surface but it takes some adjustment and work very loose on it --

C&C welcome and appreciated.

Take care
Nancy

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Apr-2010/141858-apr-sl-iris-1.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Apr-2010/141858-apr-sl-iris-2.jpg

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/12-Apr-2010/141858-apr-sl-iris-3.jpg

DAK723
04-12-2010, 10:57 PM
Ruth - I like your sunflowers! Everything you do is well done!

Nancy - These are all nice! I think, if I had to choose, number one would be my favorite! Yes, velour is a tricky surface. It is hard to get saturated colors. It softens both the lights and the darks, but it looks like you did a very good job with it! These all look very painterly!

Don

robertsloan2
04-13-2010, 07:13 AM
Nancy, all three of them are cool in their own way. The third has the strongest colors, the first has more detail, the velour one has a lot of softness. I get used to each surface having its own character. You got plenty of detail on the Pastelbord too, I think that one's my favorite though it is a very close call.

Ruthie57
04-13-2010, 07:40 AM
Good experiment Nancy! I like all of them but I'm leaning towards the first one, probably because it has more detail.
Thanks Robert, Nancy and Don for your comments about my sunflowers!

suruchi
04-13-2010, 09:58 AM
Nancy, I agree with Ruthie that all three are good but I like the first one best too. I have a good supply of Canson MT but I have a tough time getting good results with it. And Ruthie, I really like your sunflowers. I haven't tried those yet. And I too am not a "loose" painter. Wonder if it is easier to be loose on a larger size?
Dena

Mario V
04-13-2010, 12:17 PM
Looks like we all need that Spring to come fast :)
Many very inspiring works :clap:

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Apr-2010/133719-1004pas_tulip.JPG http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/13-Apr-2010/133719-1004pas_tulipdva.JPG

robertsloan2
04-13-2010, 07:41 PM
Mario, your tulips rock. I love the one on a dark background, it's so dramatic. Like the contrast between the tight rendering and the wild loose background, it sizzles off the page. The lost edge on the left side unifies it, and that's cool too. Well done!

Nansketch
04-13-2010, 09:08 PM
Mario, wonderful color in both -- especially like the dark background.

DAK723
04-13-2010, 10:26 PM
Mario, These are excellent! Lots of light on the stem and leaves, too! I like the extreme narrow crop!

Don

Turpintine45
04-14-2010, 02:00 AM
Ruthie I think your sunflowers are beautiful. I like the purple background that makes the yellow flowers stand out. Great job for one hour.

Nancy Your Iris is so soft and gentle I really like it.

Mario I also love the vibrant background it makes music. The tulip is powerful too. Great job. Jen

chuas2
04-14-2010, 02:08 PM
Mario, great work! I also like the dark background, very unusual!

Ruthie, this is really nice! You did a great job. I'm reconciling to the fact that my style is NOT loose and painterly, because I've been doing art for about 30 years and it hasn't happened yet. So, I went in MY "natural" direction and did the candles that are on the gallery page. Felt great about this one, and it was fun to do. That can't be a bad thing!

Nancy, really nice experiments on the different paper. I haven't tried velour, but it doesn't look like you struggled with it at all. I'm working some on Ampersand Pastelboard and am trying to get used to it too. Not a "forgiving" paper, but very nice to draw on (as opposed to the sanded papers). Jury's still out.

Here's my sunflowers. Nice 'n' tight. 9"x5" Girault, Ludwig on Clairefontaine Pastelmat.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/14-Apr-2010/208492-painting_sunflowers.jpg

jmcedeno
04-14-2010, 02:58 PM
This morning took some time to look at the new work posted in the last two weeks and what a delightful group of beautiful paintings, congratulations!

Jaytee: Your Sunflowers are very good, the deep purple in the background bring them forward.

Ruthie: Very nice work on your Quince and Sunflowers.

Chuas: Very clever composition by combining two photos, it worked very well.

Judi: I like the abstract feeling of your landscape.

Robert: Your Quince and Irises are fantastic, clap..clap.

Tammy: Nice Sunflowers.

Marc: Excellent, very realistic flowers.

Dena: Love your Quince and Tulips, very good.

Lisa: I like the looseness of your pastel marks.

Nancy: Very nice work.

Mario: Your Tulips are great, the dark background is excellent.

Ruthie57
04-14-2010, 04:39 PM
Mario, great tulips. I like both equally.
Chuas, beautiful Sunflowers and not tight as I understand the meaning. I think your style is free but not loose!! Love the addition of the Bee too. Nice touch.
Thanks all again for your comments on mine.

DAK723
04-14-2010, 09:40 PM
Chuas - Wonderful sunflowers! Very exciting crop!

Don

Nansketch
04-14-2010, 09:45 PM
Chaus,

wonderful sunflowers -- very interesting crop and I really like the dark bg.

Is this dark paper or a dark finish?
nancy

tvandeb
04-14-2010, 11:16 PM
Ruthie ; really like the quince; very soft delicate look to the flowers. Great on the sunflowers; your glass, and water are sooo realistic, the flowers have nice color variation.
Dena: really like the iris; has an impressionistic look to it; nice.
Nansketch: i like all three irises, but my fav is the pastalboard; I haven't try that yet. What's it like?
Mario: very nice delicate tulips on the second, and I have to agree with Robert on the first one, they rock, love the background; cool.
Chaus: Very nice color variations and movement on the petals on the crop of the sunflowers.
I know I did not get to comment on most this month, they are all stunning.:clap: I've been kinda busy; just started a teen art league, and that's taking alot of time right now. I'm hoping to try the quince before the month is out.
Thanks for the great refs this month DAK!:)

robertsloan2
04-14-2010, 11:20 PM
Mario, great work! I also like the dark background, very unusual!

Ruthie, this is really nice! You did a great job. I'm reconciling to the fact that my style is NOT loose and painterly, because I've been doing art for about 30 years and it hasn't happened yet. So, I went in MY "natural" direction and did the candles that are on the gallery page. Felt great about this one, and it was fun to do. That can't be a bad thing!

Nancy, really nice experiments on the different paper. I haven't tried velour, but it doesn't look like you struggled with it at all. I'm working some on Ampersand Pastelboard and am trying to get used to it too. Not a "forgiving" paper, but very nice to draw on (as opposed to the sanded papers). Jury's still out.

Here's my sunflowers. Nice 'n' tight. 9"x5" Girault, Ludwig on Clairefontaine Pastelmat.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/14-Apr-2010/208492-painting_sunflowers.jpg

Chuas, I quoted to bump the image forward -- your sunflowers are spectacular! I love the black background and the intense contrasts, the beautiful shapes you got. Wonderful depth and gorgeous composition. Well done!

Turpintine45
04-14-2010, 11:22 PM
Chaus I like how you have done this and that bee sure does get around! Good job. Jen

jmcedeno
04-15-2010, 01:04 PM
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/15-Apr-2010/159973-Tulips-2-IMG_0008.jpg I have been working on these Tulips all this week I do not feel confident that it is finished so I'll call it WIP, what do you think I could do to improve it? somehow I think the background needs some additional work. I began working on Canson M light brown hoping to keep the brown as the background color but did not work, I used hatching technique for the first time and I'm not too happy about it. Please help with your C&C.

Mario V
04-15-2010, 04:04 PM
First of all, thanks for all the nice comments :wave: about the tulips.
While I'm still infected :) with the flowers, I did a couple of dandelion studies.

The first one is a charcoal sketch on a plain brown paper with Rembrandts. I took the picture the next morning and look what happens to dandelions after one night in the water. They all went straight up :eek: and ruined my composition.

The second is a shape study on the La Card using same palette as the first on.
Let's see if I can make a proper painting out of it. I'm now waiting for the rain to stop that I can pick up some fresh flowers :)

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/15-Apr-2010/133719-1004pas_maslacak1.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/15-Apr-2010/133719-1004pas_maslacak2.JPG

Mario V
04-15-2010, 04:29 PM
Robert, I like paintings of flowers on the branch and your Quinces are one of the best! Bravo!
Lisa, I don't know why you don't like it, but I find it marvelous :clap:
Dena, great curves and I like almost abstract feel of the Irises.
Tammy, where did you find that green? it is almost fluorescent :). Great!
Ruthie, great colors on sunflowers, especially the background. I keep on staring at it :eek: The Quince flower is a winner :clap:
Nancy, Great study. I like the velour one the most
Chuar, such a interesting composition and the dynamics of these sunflowers.
Jose, I find the background to be very interesting and I like that blue, but maybe it does steal some focus from the tulips.

chuas2
04-15-2010, 07:20 PM
Chaus,

wonderful sunflowers -- very interesting crop and I really like the dark bg.

Is this dark paper or a dark finish?
nancy
Thank you Nancy and Don! It's on cream colored pastelboard, with dark mahogany and blue Ludwigs from my "Ludwig Darks," which I don't get to use that often! Highly recommend these!

Jose, nice glowing tulips. I like the hatching. Nice contrast to the smooth tulip petals. Great weeds Mario! I never thought dandelions could be that appealing. :)
Chuas

jaytee
04-15-2010, 07:43 PM
Life too hectic to comment individually but LOVING the new work I am seeing here :)

chuas2
04-15-2010, 08:35 PM
Hope life isn't too hectic that you can't get in some painting Janet, but I know how that goes.

Yeah Jen, I don't know. I was working and that confounded bee came in, buzzing around my head, so in he went. :lol:

Thanks also Robert, for your very generous comments. I've always found something strange and slightly unsettling about sunflowers and the backs of the flowers that look a little like octupuses (octupi?). I wanted to capture some of that "goth" feeling!
Chuas

DAK723
04-15-2010, 10:42 PM
Jose - Very nice Tulips! Perhaps you're not completely satisfied with the background because we are used to seeing flowers in the daylight, and your dark background gives it a sort of nighttime look. A possible suggestion would be for the background to get lighter as it disappears off the top of the page. On the other hand, it has a real drama to it this way!

Mario - Very nice! I especially like the second one on the gray paper. Gray always seems to work well in the background as the neutrality of the gray really brings out the brightness of the colors!

Don

Turpintine45
04-16-2010, 12:14 AM
Mario I like what you have dine with a simple flower like a dandelion. Very nice. Shame they don't last very long though. Jen

Jose Your tulips are wonderful and I like the hatching you did. Do you do it before you paint the tulips or after? Jen

BetsyPriesing
04-16-2010, 08:52 AM
Wow
I just wanted to say that there are nice variations on the flowers painted. And I will keep in mind techniques from quite a few paintings here.
I find flowers very difficult to paint..not sure why...probably should practice more. This thread has gotten me interested especially with the beautiful reference photos!

tvandeb
04-16-2010, 05:08 PM
Mario:
I got the bright green last year in Denver at one of Jerrys artarama store, in their open stocks of pastels. I also got some other bright colors to go along with them, I just notice Jerrys artarama is now selling them online now too, they are the myunga brand, they are a cheaper brand, thought I'd try them, they are not bad, the pigments on the brights are outstanding compared to their other colors. :wave:

tvandeb
04-16-2010, 05:10 PM
Mario: I like the dandelion still life, really loose in some areas, gives it a real natural look to the flowers. Sorry they folded up on you. :)

Nansketch
04-16-2010, 09:08 PM
Jose -- your tulips are wonderful. I like the bg- it does have an 'evening' light feel to it.

Mario -- the humble dandelion but you've done a wonderful job on them. I like the brown paper -- makes an interesting surface.

Chaus-- beautiful darks -- may have to go on my 'shopping list'

Nancy

jmcedeno
04-17-2010, 04:11 PM
Nancy: Thank you very much for your nice comments.
Jen: Thanks for the C&C, I did the hatching last after realizing that the background was too flat and not really helping the focal point, the tulip on the right.
Don: Thank you, YES! you're right it has a night feeling to it
(unintended) but I did want a very dark background to bring attention to the tulips. I'll follow up on your suggestion about lighting the background on the upper portion of the paper.
Chuas: Thank you very much.
Mario: Thank you for your sugestions maybe you're right, I'll take a second look at the bacjground vs. tulips. BTW, I like your dandelions

jmcedeno
04-17-2010, 06:54 PM
Hello! again, this is my second entry to the Spotlight "SUN FLOWERS IN A CRYSTAL VASE". I wanted to experiment with a loose technique this time without looking at the ref. to avoid copying it. I dry mounted a 9x12 Wallis on a 11x14 foam board; I applied a wet underpainting using a dark purple Unison smeared with "gansol"; after drying it drew the sketch with Vine Charcoal and then started to apply the colors on the flowers very loose with abandon, first orange, secondly yellows (not spreading or rubbing with the fingers, just pure pigment) I got excited with the results and couldn't stop, and two hours later I finished it. I like it and plan to conthttp://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/17-Apr-2010/159973-Sun_Flowers_in_Crystal_Vase002.jpg inue this route and practice, practice, and practice until I get to "Carnegie Hall":lol: Your C&C is welcome.

DAK723
04-17-2010, 11:32 PM
Jose, I commented on this in the "Gallery" thread, but it is worth repeating - Very nice job on this! The blues and purples on the table really complement the yellows and oranges of the flowers! Lots of energy with the loose, bold strokes!

Don

chuas2
04-18-2010, 11:33 AM
Go Jose! I love the way you can tell if an artist's energy is really going full steam in a painting. Really nice variation in each of the petals, great color!
Chuas

chuas2
04-18-2010, 11:37 AM
Chaus-- beautiful darks -- may have to go on my 'shopping list'

Nancy

Nancy, I find I only go to my set of Terry Ludwig "30 Intense Darks" if I want fullest, richest darks. I'm still a pastel newbie, but I've heard a lot of other folks raving about the Ludwig darks. I think this is from the II series. Dakota has them.
Chuas

robertsloan2
04-18-2010, 01:36 PM
Mario, I love your dandelion studies. Those are so cool. Thanks for including the setup in the photo, that was awesome.

Jose, your sunflowers rock. That's so cool the way you captured their rolling petals and you have such lively strokes. Gorgeous crystal vase.

Thanks for all the comments on my flowers!

Turpintine45
04-20-2010, 12:28 PM
Well here is my humble version. It's a lot harder than it looks but I'm learning. Jen

9x12 wallis Rembrants and pencils.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Apr-2010/216461-IMG_3427R_Medium.jpg

DAK723
04-20-2010, 04:54 PM
Jen, Very nice! The sunflowers are very well done, and the table (which might have been minimized) is given excellent treatment, including a hint of the texture! I just did a version of this - which I will post later - and I like your table a lot better than mine!

Don

suruchi
04-20-2010, 05:15 PM
Woo-hoo, Jose!!! Grest job on the sunflowers! My next goal is to loosen up and be as free as this appears to be. Dena

DAK723
04-20-2010, 11:08 PM
Here's my attempt at the sunflowers! I'm glad I included this photo in the spotlight - I've been meaning to paint it since 2006, when I originally took the photo! I just hadn't gotten around to it yet!

This is on PastelMat, dark gray, approx. 15" x 11" using Senneliers and Mt. Visions. C&C welcome.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/20-Apr-2010/82335-mysunflowers-dak.JPG

Don

Turpintine45
04-21-2010, 12:31 AM
I like the blue's with this one Don it makes the sunflowers stand out. Good job. Jen

robertsloan2
04-21-2010, 06:59 AM
Jen, your version of the sunflowers is cool! I like the vase, it's nice and clear and you give a good sense of the water in it. Great flowers and table.

Don, excellent! I love seeing all the different versions, yours is much more cool and the blues of the background really make the flowers pop out. Gorgeous centers on those flowers. Love the way you did the little fallen petals too, both of you.

Islandgurl
04-21-2010, 12:23 PM
Hi all in here late but I'm seeing lots of beautiful work here! ...been avoiding this months Spotlight like the plague due to my weird mental block that relates to painting flowers,but finally got the gumption to take a stab at the Sunflowers....my first attempt at glass, not so sure it looks like glass though:o

Don Love the blue!..nice painting
Jose Both your Tulips & Sunflowers turned out great!
MarioNice take on the tulips,neat contemporary vibe! Dandelion studies are lovely as well...did you try putting them near a window to get them to open up again?
Robert..really like your Sunflowers crop...nicely done!
Nancy Nice Iris!
RuthieBoth your Quince blossoms & Sunflowers are terrific!
Tammy love the bright colors...good job on going out of the comfort zone!
Lisa Gorgeous Coneflowers!
Surachi Welcome! Both the Tulips & Quince blossoms are looking good,you're off to a great start!:clap:
Chaus Tulips are fantastic
Jen Coneflowers painting is excellent!!
OK typer's cramp is setting in now..can't go any further back!! but:clap: :clap: :clap: for everyone I didn't get to!!!
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/21-Apr-2010/191938-DSC_0007SF.jpg

Turpintine45
04-21-2010, 08:00 PM
Islandgirl love your version of the sunflowers they really shine and your water is great. Jen

DAK723
04-21-2010, 08:10 PM
Suzanne, Great job on the sunflowers! Not sure what your mental block is about, but it didn't seem to get in the way of doing a really fine painting! The glass is well done, too!

Don

Ruthie57
04-22-2010, 03:45 PM
Why I haven't been on this thread for a week I don't know but I have to say it's Sunflower heaven! So many different interpretations and styles, all beautiful! Well done folks.
No more flowers from me but I've really enjoyed the ones I've done. I'm off on holiday (sorry vacation) tomorrow and will be back when the May Spotlight kicks off! Can't wait to see what it will be. Almost worth coming back from Cyprus for!

suruchi
04-22-2010, 07:13 PM
Suzanne and Don, great executions on both of your sunflower paintings! I've been slaving over my latest orchid painting and I feel the need to get back to a flower in the spotlight. Tomorrow!
Dena

mollerman
04-24-2010, 10:21 AM
Thanx everyone for the nice comments. Sorry I haven't been over to the spotlight much this month. The next few months are pretty busy for me getting ready for the summer art shows and such.
Everyone has done a wonderful job on these projects.

SunFace
04-24-2010, 12:26 PM
Everyone's work is so beautiful! I am really impressed.

:clap: :clap: :clap:

chuas2
04-27-2010, 12:18 PM
Ruthie, Cyprus? Oh wow! Sounds like a lot of inspired painting to me.

Thanks for a fantastic April Spotlight Don! Seems like I wasn't the only one inspired by your beautiful photographs.

Thank you!!
Chuas

DAK723
04-30-2010, 09:20 PM
Thanks Chuas, for the nice compliments!

And thank you to all of this month's participants! Lots of wonderful paintings! I hope you enjoyed our Spotlight on Flowers!

Don