View Full Version : April 2011 Oil Pastel Challenge

04-01-2011, 01:11 PM
Most of this month's challenge photos are from the Reference Image Library. I'll post the links to their larger versions and whose they are with them. This month we've got a theme: Big Cats including where they live and of course, my favorite big cat, the one that lays on my chest when I have a cold and weighs 15lb. Ari's three times the size of the little cat in our household, so he's pretty big!

But first, cats that would scare him silly by scale:
The Sun King, posted to RIL by WSV. Big version: http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=129415&size=big&cat=

Mountain Lion Jumping Up by jenbenjee, big version: http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=93801&size=big&cat=

Cheetah posted by Splatt! - big version: http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=73923&size=big&cat=

Now in the next post, we'll take a look at some places these cats live in the wild.

04-01-2011, 01:18 PM
CIMGO724 Tree posted by elsjeb, big version at http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=126422&size=big&cat=

We've got some more lions at home in this one...
Taranguire posted by Astur, big version http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=21822&size=big&cat=

An inspiring mountain and a home with a view:
Kilimanjaro Hut by leamacd, big version http://www.wetcanvas.com/RefLib/showphoto.php?photo=79039&size=big&cat=

Last, and never least, my favorite big cat in all the world. His most excellent Hairiness, Ari.
He too is in his natural environment, draped on a waterbed with his pillows to lean against and an art supply catalog to rest his head on. He's a studio cat, at home anywhere we have climate control and he's got me. Very big and fierce, he stalks kibbles, sounds in the walls, my hand, pencils and gets murderous on anyone who threatens me.

04-01-2011, 02:00 PM
Thank you for hosting Robert. Your challenge looks like great fun.

04-01-2011, 02:25 PM
aawwwww Ari is just such a fluffball!!!!!!

GOT to do this month's challenge - I've been working a lot on big cats lately albeit in softies. Time to get the oilies out (when I've finished my pasgtel tiger.

Thanks for hosting Robert - GREAT refs!!!Q!! Gonna enjoy this!

Pat Isaac
04-01-2011, 04:17 PM
Great pictures, Robert. I especially like the tree. Thanks for hosting.


04-02-2011, 05:55 AM
Thank you! Glad everyone enjoys the change of pace so far. Pat, I couldn't resist that weird tree. I can't even tell if that's a wall it's growing in or a termite mound with an opening in it - it's just strange and beautiful. Looks like leopards or lions would love to climb on it though!

I also decided to be kind in terms of leopard spots and tiger stripes, closest is the cheetah and they at least have those distinctive teardrop markings as well. I remember getting caught up in leopard spots too many times! Especially when I know that's how they recognize each other.

04-02-2011, 10:47 AM
Usually I don't paint animals but the reference photos are just too tempting. Robertsloan, excellent selection!

Paper is Arches dessin 130g/m2 (60 Lbs), paper size: 21x29.7 cm (8 1/4"x11 3/4"), oil pastels: Van Gogh


04-02-2011, 11:30 AM
Thank you! Glad everyone enjoys the change of pace so far. Pat, I couldn't resist that weird tree. I can't even tell if that's a wall it's growing in or a termite mound with an opening in it - it's just strange and beautiful. Looks like leopards or lions would love to climb on it though!

I also decided to be kind in terms of leopard spots and tiger stripes, closest is the cheetah and they at least have those distinctive teardrop markings as well. I remember getting caught up in leopard spots too many times! Especially when I know that's how they recognize each other.

That looks like a banyon tree, with a hole in its main trunk. ( they drop new roots/trunks from the upper branches.)

Thank you for hosting Robert. I hope I will have the time to do at least one this month.

04-02-2011, 12:12 PM
Moscatel, I love the lion.

04-02-2011, 12:32 PM
Thanks, CerraAngel

04-02-2011, 02:18 PM
Is it all right if I use a different photo of the same lion. I think it's the same lion. It's a profile of the head.
I'm easing myself into doing a human portrait.

04-02-2011, 02:38 PM
Moscatel, fantastic job. Gee, and I had wanted to do the lion. :crying:

04-02-2011, 03:06 PM
Halthepainter, I'm waiting anxiously for your lion.:cat:

04-02-2011, 03:21 PM
Halthepainter, I'm waiting anxiously for your lion.:cat:

moscatel, are you kidding? You set the bar way too high for me. :o

04-02-2011, 04:49 PM
Moscatel, nice lion.
What is ARches dessin - is it a watercolor paper?

04-02-2011, 06:02 PM
Great refs Robert!!! I didn't get to do last months as I've been packing for moving. Moving this week, but I still have plenty of time to try a couple of the refs; love the cat refs!:clap:

04-03-2011, 04:10 AM
Hi Robert :wave: Thanks for hosting the challenge this month :thumbsup:

I just love Ari, she's gorgeous! No wonder you love cats so much! I haven't been over to the pastel forum for some time, have you finished your cat commission series yet?

Well done Moscatel, this is a lovely painting! you should draw animals more often!

I thought I'd jump into the challenge early this month as I missed last months.

I chose the Lion too! And like Moscatel I haven't drawn an animal in a very long time. My attempt is on cheap sketch pad paper with Senns. Approximately 30cm x 30cm (about 1.5 hours, got to love lazy Sundays) :cat: :cat: :cat:


I wish now that I had spent more time getting the eye's in proportion.

04-03-2011, 04:28 AM
I need to buy a better camera, Just realized the colors on this don't really represent the picture at all!

My husband mentioned that the picture is significantly warmer than this, and the white's are popping heaps more than they should be.

04-03-2011, 06:24 AM
moscatel and vicki....these are beauties!!!! ...robert ..great selection....now to pick one out!!!!:wave:

04-03-2011, 09:12 AM
Vicki, he's beautiful. I've noticed my digital camera also enhances the whites a bit.

I also photoshop my photos to try to make them match the originals as much as possible before posting. Sometimes it is possible to warm up the photo if the lighting has made the photo too cool.

04-03-2011, 04:44 PM
Great cat VIcki. I love the texture and color.

04-03-2011, 04:49 PM
Here's my cat so far, it's the same lion but different photo. It's in an ugly phase right now - hoping it will get better.
I don't have any lion colors so I'm using a lot of green and orange.
It's about 10.5 X 12.5 on mat board covered with clear gesso and some pastel ground. I'm liking the surface, it's slippery because of the gesso but also has a nice random tooth - best of both worlds.

04-03-2011, 08:44 PM
Well done Katy, you've done well with your limited pallette!

Thanks Hal for the photo shop advice, I tried tweeking the image but I've still got those white's jumping from the page...


Cheers :)

04-03-2011, 09:28 PM
Katy, lovely job on your lion.

Vicki, your warmed up kitty looks great. Great modeling with a real three deminsional feel.

04-03-2011, 10:21 PM
Done for the night.
I tell you, trying to get a photo of accurate colors seems to me near impossible. Since it's now dark outside, I now have 2 lights on mine and both are supposedly natural light but one leans towards warm and the other cool. and neither looks like natural light.
Vicki, it's funny that you said limited palette, my husband said "limited palette' I have many pastels but apparently not many in the tan and brown ranges.

Pat Isaac
04-04-2011, 08:28 AM
These are great lions....He does make a wonderful subject. I really like the variety of color you have in your lion, Vicki.


Ruth Anne
04-04-2011, 03:50 PM
Hi all - just new to this site and I'm trying to get my "sea legs" - I'm wondering about this challenge - is the idea to use one of the reference pics or just use any reference picture of a big cat?

Pat Isaac
04-04-2011, 04:31 PM
Welcome, Ruth Anne...:wave: The idea is to use one of the reference photos. Do hope you join in.


04-04-2011, 08:04 PM
You are free to delete my pictures. I don't want to cause any confusion.

04-04-2011, 11:21 PM
Katy, just by looking, I didn't realize it was a different reference. I thought you just turned his head. I do things like that all the time. Please don't delete.


04-04-2011, 11:39 PM
I tried the lion also (8X11 inch 140 lb fabriano studio paper, pentels & faber-castell). I'm more of a sketcher. I really like seeing the different versions. Charlotte

04-05-2011, 08:03 AM
hey Robert, these are awesome! I'll try to get a few in--
taking the fam to the Amari Orchid in Pattaya for the weekend and some much needed down time-- plan to bring the pastels :)
might get a beach shot or 2 as well in the sketch thread.

04-05-2011, 10:13 AM
Charlotte, that is a really cute version of the lion.

Ruth Anne, the idea is to use one or more photos as a reference for a work of art. Let me emphasize reference. We use the reference as a starting point and go where we wish with it. I assumed Katy merely wished to change the lion's posture which is just fine. I often get a bit wild with my use of the references but this month, with these subjects, I'll probably stay fairly traditional.

Remember Ruth Anne, we artists create their own reality on canvas and paper. :evil: :D :thumbsup:

04-05-2011, 01:07 PM
Wow, so many beautiful paintings so far!

Moscatel, thanks for posting such a great painting of the lion. I love the expression on his face, you captured his pose perfectly too.

Cat1lady, your lion profile is gorgeous. Heís got a sweet, gentle look to him and beautiful mane texture. Love the way you composed the painting too, looking out from his ďframe.Ē

VickiB, your Impressionist lion is gorgeous. Very lively and colorful, love the eye expression and his tousled, sunlit mane. Beautiful!

Charlotte, your lion sketch is very powerful and so different in style. He looks vigorous and intense.

I can see the lion's taken top prize for the most popular photo, hope to see some cheetahs and banyan trees and cougars to come. Gorgeous lions, each and every one of them. Well done! The variety here is breathtaking and each of you has shown a different aspect of the cat's personality and the lion as symbol. Beautiful!

Keep them coming! Ari purrs at you!

04-05-2011, 01:25 PM
I started on this with the lion and I'm having right issues as I started it on what were supposed to be 'Boards For OilPAstles' hmm lol rubbish! I coated it with some Colourfix with some coloured acrylic in it. Even withthe colourfix it's awful.

I did my first coat with DRs which did nothing but crumble. Then the next with Senns and Neos and I can't get any purchase. I can't do any detail and blending or glazing is virtually impossible. YOu've seen the big cats I've done with pastels... well this lion looks like something I'd have done 6 years ago when I first started. I might just abandon it - for now I've set it to on e side to 'set up'

These 'Oil Pastel Boards' will now be saved for acrylics for the WDE orpractice.

04-05-2011, 05:18 PM
I love seeing all your paintings. You all are doing great! :clap:

04-06-2011, 03:01 PM
Lin, sounds like those boards are the pits. I hope they're all right for acrylics, it's horrible when something comes out like that. Maybe when it sets up you can salvage your lion, I hope so. Your cats are so great.

I went for the lion too, had to when everyone's jumping right in with him!

The Sun King
5" x 7"
Mungyo Gallery Artists' Extra Soft Oil Pastels
Bogus brown sketch paper
Photo reference by WSV from Reference Image Library, for April 2011 OP Challenge.

04-06-2011, 04:12 PM
Beautiful Robert.

04-07-2011, 12:41 AM
Charlotte, you got the lions attitude with your sketch.
Love the hair on your lion Robert. Are those Mungyo's actually very soft?
Lin, what kind of board are you using? I'd like to avoid it.

04-07-2011, 10:28 AM
Thank you! Yes, the Mungyo Artists' Extra Soft OPs are very soft, they're next to Sennelier in softness. That's why I like them so much. A bit softer than Neopastel actually and very inexpensive, still artist grade.

04-08-2011, 04:21 AM
Well done everyone

Charlotte I've never heard of the fabriano studio paper, I like the texture you have achieved.

Robert, one beautiful kitty!! I especially like the warm tones through this painting, makes him look like the wise old one. Will you be drawing Ari too?

04-09-2011, 01:43 PM
Lin, I'm looking forward to seeing your challenge.

Robert, your cat is king and looks very thoughtful and wise.

Vicky, I like both versions of your lion. Amazing how different they look changing the color temperature.

Vicky, fabriano studio paper is a watercolor paper, cold press, that is ab out 20% cotton. If you get it online, it's a little more that a dollar a sheet for 22X30in sheets in a 10 pack, and you can cut it down to any size you like. It is also interesting with markers and has a nice internal & external sizing for quick watercolors.


04-09-2011, 05:42 PM
I have declared my lion finished. I can't add any more OP's - I have been scraping some off to be able to put some more on.
It does seem that the surface, clear gesso and some pumice gel on mat board, holds up very well to the scraping.
Whiskers are hard to do on top on many layers of OP. I'll have to consider a plan if I ever do whiskers again. Depicting the fluffy hair was also hard.

I am starting a new OP on Uart 600 paper, which I've never used before. It seems nice - I am going to try to not go overboard on layers. I think I had so many layers on the lion because I had to blend colors to get anything near accurate enough. And frankly, blending is my favorite part.

There was red on the white OP when I applied it to the chin and it won't scrape off. It's not as noticeable in real life as in this photo.

04-09-2011, 07:58 PM
Katy, he is so beautiful in the finish! His whiskers are great, they have just enough presence to seem fine and delicate. I love the soft thin hairs on his chin too, you have a glorious texture on his face. The faint pink cast doesn't ruin him at all, I would have assumed it was a deliberate color variegation if you hadn't mentioned it was a spot of red on the white stick. You definitely lightened it enough that it looks more like a delicate undertone, not like he's been eating and hasn't washed his face yet.

I think for OP one of the best way to get whiskers is to underpaint them with white or cream, then go over it with the other colors, then scrape back to the cream to get the fine lines. That seems to come out the best for the times I've done whiskers.

04-09-2011, 11:46 PM
Thanks Robert.
I tested some putting down white and then layering darker colors on top and then scraping back to the white. I was worried that the top layers would just blend with the white and then there would be nothing to scratch back to. But it worked fine, I was careful not to press hard when blending.

04-11-2011, 10:46 AM
Robert: First off, my apologies for my mutilation of your "Cheeta" reference photo.

Actually my painting is of a hybrid cheeta. It seems this travelling Snowy Leopard met this really hot female cheeta and the result was the hybrid cheeta that is the subject of my painting. Hence the excess shagginess of the fur and the snout rather than the nice rounded face of the typical cheeta. :wink2:

This is my second experiment with Shiva Oilstiks. I kept reworking the face and have finally given up, hence the hybrid shape of the head. I couldn't seem the get the color mixtures I wanted to create a shaded side of the cheeta and I wound up with an ambigious light source. I then gave up and used bold application of the sticks for the fur and wound up with the over done texture of the shaggy fur.

"Hybrid Cheeta", Shiva oilstiks, 11 by 14 inches on canvas board. (not archival... this one's for the dust bin) Just showing to support my friend Robert's Challenge. (This is a very busy month but I hope to try another challenge before the month is out)


The background colors are much darker IRL. Not sure why they photographed so lightly. The photo taken in natural light on a gray day.

Suggestions welcome for my future projects. This one's a goner on so many levels. :rolleyes:

Pat Isaac
04-11-2011, 11:05 AM
I do like the shagginess of the fur, has a nice feel. I agree that the face needs work and rather than put it in the dust bin, wait awhile and go over it with OPs. There is some nice stuff going on here.


04-11-2011, 01:21 PM
Pat, you're entriely too kind. Thank you. :heart:

04-11-2011, 02:06 PM
Hal, your "hybrid cheetah" is cool. The extra shagginess makes her look young, like a half grown cub - they get shaggy before they get their full growth. The ambiguous light source is all right with the background, it's a vibrant, colorful painting and the cool colors do push the cat forward.

My main suggestion for next time is to sketch the head anatomy a bit more carefully, maybe grid it. Keep a value sketch next to the painting while working on it instead of working over the sketch. It looks to me like you had the head sketched right, then features migrated thanks to the big sticks and color changes to create distortion within an outline that wasn't too far off true. Cat heads are tricky. They are as complex and difficult as human faces and it took me as much practice to get cat heads coming out true to likeness as it did to learn to do recognizable tourists.

You got a heck of a lot of detail with those huge sticks in this too. The fuzzy texture is excellent. That blue background is wonderful, that's so shadowy and evening cool - I love that. You've got to use that texture in another painting, don't literally toss this because you worked out some awesome things even if you're not happy with it for what it is.

The foreground foliage is excellent too. Very loose and evocative. Really, the only problem is in the cat's head. I'm not kidding - and the only thing that corrects that is specific practice on cat heads. Your "Snow Cheetah" is pretty darn cool and the experiment succeeded on many levels.

04-11-2011, 09:26 PM
Your cheetah looks like a young one. I had a hard time trying to get shaggy hair on the back of my lion's head and I was trying for it.
I think my camera and scanner show any light color on the surface as being much lighter than it actually is in real life.

04-11-2011, 11:03 PM
Hi Katy.

Robert thank you for trying to help save my artistic ego.

I tried to post a reply earlier this evening but it seemed to vanish into the ether.

I used color shapers to get the small stuff into my painting. I tried to rub the oil stiks on a paper palette and pick it up with the color shaper. However, the paper palette was too slick to pick up much color. I then put some water color paper on a clip board and rubbed the oil stiks on that paper and enough color deposited on the watercolor paper for me to mix it and then pick it up with color shapers.

Robert I'm too ham handed to do delicate work directly with the oil stiks.

I had gridded the cat head and had initially drawn it acurately but in my subsequent efforts with the detail and working with the colors, I lost my drawing underneath the color then proceded to draw a snout on the poor critter. Oh well perhaps I can do better next time.

04-11-2011, 11:52 PM
tried the tree on dark blue (I think) paper, with a light blue pentel and the rest faber castells. This is where being mildly tritan color blind messes me up. I checked with my son when I couldn't tell the blues from the greens. Put down white and then the light blue, for the sky.

04-12-2011, 08:28 AM
CL, it looks as if you've joined forces with Lin and have given your painting a touch of Dali.

Your tree is really neat, and I like the style you chose to go with. What size is your painting.

My Son is officially color blind but it doesn't show in his paintings. Some of his color choices seem a bit vivid though....:wink2:

04-12-2011, 07:04 PM
moscatel: Great job on the lion, really like his eyes!
VickiB. : Really like the color variation on your lion!
Cat1lady: Beautiful soft colors and wow great job on the folds of the lions skin!
CLWilliams: Very nice lion-he looks like he's smiling-Nice!Very nice bright bold colors on the tree!

RobertSloan: Really like the bright dark bold colors on your lion, it really brings out those eyes!
halthepainter: Beautiful color choices on your cheetah- has an impressionist feel to your painting.
:clap: :clap: :clap:

Okay I have not done animals in OP's only in soft pastels. I am new to OP's going on 3 months with them, so I'll do the cats last.

I did the "kilimanjaro hut" I really liked the foliage different colors along side and behind the hut. Done on mi-tentes off white with various OP's. C/C and comments are most welcome as I am still learning.
Thanks to the photographer for the great ref!

04-12-2011, 08:47 PM
CL, I like all the curves in your tree, it's got a nice design to it.
Tammy, thanks for the nice comments.
Your sky looks kind of like watercolor - did you start with a watercolor wash? I like the angles of the plant life in the lower left section, some nice 3D stuff going on there.

04-12-2011, 09:01 PM
This is a lovely group - thank you so much for being here.

I drew Robert's Ari today. Very small, 4X6 inches, hot press arches watercolor paper. (The tree was about 10X13 in).

04-12-2011, 09:18 PM
Charoltte, you're a wild lady.

Your Ari the cat is delightful. Well done. :thumbsup:

04-16-2011, 10:03 AM
I just got a set of Lyra oil pastels (it says premium quality but I think they're student)-- they're actually not too bad-- anyways, here's my attempt at a picasso style for the tiger---


04-16-2011, 10:25 AM
Very cute PJ. Well done.

04-16-2011, 08:17 PM
make that cheetah... (I was in a hurry last night)-
Thanks Hal! I should have made the pic smaller, it might look better since it's only 5x7

CLWiliiams your tree is awesome...
Hal I think your cheetah looks pretty cool--- yeah, she/he is a hybrid (hehe)
tvandeb good job on the hut-- looks like a great place for a vacation :)

04-17-2011, 09:25 AM
Hi Charlotte, thanks for the info for the fabriano studio paper.

Katy, I really like your lion. Speaks wisdom and has depth.:cat:

Hal, those oil sticks are so big yet you managed to get so much detail. I agree with Robert, there's lots going for this painting:thumbsup:

CL I love the contrasts in your tree painting... And Ari is awesome, I really like your suggestive style, it really worked here from a really difficult reference image (ie. fluff ball in his natural habitat:cat: )

Tammy, great stuff hope to see more work in the future.

PJ. Love your tiger, vibrant and expressive!

04-19-2011, 02:13 AM
The scanner seems to darken it, but here's the head of the lion. I'm not done with it, but I've got the head. Figured I'd better upload now before I forget. It's Cray Pas on 11x14 Strathmore pastel paper, 80 lb. I cropped the picture though.
Well here it is. I'm gradually getting the hang of it, but give me time. :)


Pat Isaac
04-19-2011, 07:49 AM
Wow...this is wonderful. Such great use of color and has a lovely softness to it.


04-19-2011, 08:02 AM
Wow tdye. Your lion is magnificient. Yes you really do have the hang of it. Wonderful modeling.

04-19-2011, 07:56 PM
First pastel drawing in about 40 years - I have no idea what I'm doing, but I was enjoying seeing what others were doing, and it inspired me to leap in, so here goes:

About thirty minutes. Cheap newsprint. Portfolio oil pastels. Thanks to Robert for posting the picture of Ari.


04-19-2011, 08:22 PM
gef, welcome to the Oil Pastel Forum.

Great job on Ari. Nice a loose but you seem to have captured him.

04-19-2011, 08:59 PM
gef, welcome to the Oil Pastel Forum.

Great job on Ari. Nice a loose but you seem to have captured him.
Thanks, Hal. My favourite way to sketch in graphite is with heavy quick strokes and so my natural approach is definitely loose. I guess I'm starting with what I know.

04-20-2011, 10:52 AM
Thank you Hal and Pat! I really had a lot of fun with that one. I suppose I should finish it, just to train myself to actually finish things (I have major difficulties with that).

gef, I really do think you captured Ari's personality there. The attitude in the position of the ears completes it. ;) It's like he's saying,"I'm napping right now. Napping. You do understand what that means, right? It means I'm lying here and you're not, now kindly leave unless you have food."

04-20-2011, 12:53 PM
...gef, I really do think you captured Ari's personality there. The attitude in the position of the ears completes it. ;) It's like he's saying,"I'm napping right now. Napping. You do understand what that means, right? It means I'm lying here and you're not, now kindly leave unless you have food."

It's amazing how cats convey so much information through something as simple as the sit of an ear, isn't it? :P

Thanks for the kind words. --Gary

Pat Isaac
04-20-2011, 04:37 PM
Welcome to the OP forum, gef....:wave: Nice gestural sketch of ari.


04-20-2011, 08:08 PM
Welcome to the OP forum, gef....:wave: Nice gestural sketch of ari.


Thank you, Pat. Good to be here. There's a lot of good work being posted - I think I've already learned a bit just by looking at the very wide range of different approaches - from the sketches to the painterly. Great stuff.

04-24-2011, 06:29 PM
Robert this is my version of your African Veldt. I heavily cropped your reference photo. I couldn't seem to match the colors in the reference photo so I changed the season to the wet season, lots of green. :evil: :D

I'm still trying to get the hang of oil sticks. Shiva, student oil sticks on canvas panel 11 by 14 inches.


Suggestions welcome.

04-27-2011, 06:00 PM
My goodness, where is everyone????

Was my latest work so bad It has scared everyone away?????:eek:

If that's the case, Pat can always remove it. :o

04-28-2011, 08:22 AM
Hi Hal,

Had to jump in, sorry you felt lonely. It must be Easter, everyone's still on holidays. Here in Australia we had a five day long weekend. So most people here took another three days in holiday leave to make the most of it...

Darn wish I was that smart :)

I'm no expert, and have never used the oil sticks the sheer size of them is daunting.

You are improving in leaps and bounds with this medium. I enjoy watching your progression.



Pat Isaac
04-28-2011, 08:25 AM
Missed this also, Hal. I had a very busy week and weekend
You are doing quite well with the oil sticks and I like the impasto feel that you have. Good looking green.


04-28-2011, 08:27 AM
Tyde, just a fantastic lion you have captured the mood and the light perfectly! I love it!

Gef, great painting of Ari, wonderfully expressive.

Cheers all

04-28-2011, 08:40 AM
Thank you Pat and Vicki.

Vicki there was a lot of picking color off the tip of the oil sticks with color shapers. I also did some mixing of one stick on top of another smeared on a disposable paper palette and then picking up that color with color shapers.

04-28-2011, 01:45 PM
Thank you, Vicki!
Hal, sorry I haven't posted till now, and NO your painting did not scare everyone away! :lol: I think it was correctly said that people were busy during and just after Easter. Your painting is relaxing to look at and imagine the animals grazing in the grass just outside the trees. I particularly like the fading of the colors for the trees in the background; it suggests a haze that occurs with some humidity on a very warm day.

Hal, taking bits off the oil sticks as you have done here is actually how I do the detailing with the Cray Pas. Cray Pas are good... you just need to know how to talk to them. ;)

04-28-2011, 09:00 PM
Sorry I wasn't posting in here as regularly as I should - was sick, the overexertion from all that running up and down stairs in tornado warnings. Today's been my first really good day since the bad weather started. Wow! I missed so many incredible paintings here, now I feel bad for not coming back so often. Should've commented at the time. Hope y'all come back to see this.

CL Williams - WOW, love your art nouveau tree with pentel and faber castells! It is spectacular! The lines are so engaging and the balance of the composition so beautiful. Youíve done something unique with this. I love it. Thank your son for color checking, between you the color harmony is so glorious.

Your little Ari sketch is so cute! Heís such a sweetie. Thank you for doing him! Bright and wild! Right on the nose though, easy to see the likeness. Love seeing my fuzz buddy in different styles!

Tammy, wonderful Kilimanjaro Hut! Good job on the different foliage colors and the aerial perspective, thatís got plenty of depth!

PJ, wild! I like your Picasso style cheetah, thatís so cool. Very dramatic and well balanced! Iím not usually a Picasso fan but wow, you went to one of his earlier stages which I have enjoyed.

tdye84 - beautiful lion head! Love the soft muted colors you chose and his thoughtful look, the deep volume of his mane. Gorgeous lines hinting at his body too.

gef05 - sweet sleepy Ari! I love it! That is so awesome!

Hal, WOW! Love the way you changed it to the rainy season and brought the veldt to life! Itís so rich and gorgeous. Beautiful oil sticks painting and you put lots of game for the big cats to chase too! Couldnít be better!

And no, Hal, you didn't chase everyone away with your gorgeous painting. I was just wiped out from throwing my back and got it fixed yesterday with a treatment from my son in law, then got a sunny day today at last.

Tdye, I also like your tagline. Very cool.

04-28-2011, 11:17 PM
Tdye, I also like your tagline. Very cool.

;) Why thank you. I do hope your back is feeling better. Perhaps I should pop in to the chit-chat thread.

04-29-2011, 07:31 AM
By all means Tdye join in on the Chit Chat.

04-29-2011, 11:38 PM
I know. I am very late into the thread. I been busy with other stuff.

Everyones work is fabulous on the big cute fluffy kitties! Robert, awesome selection, and furry animals are intimidating when it comes to art.

Hal, I would love to see your cheetah in real life, especially since I am in the mood for darkish paintings at the moment.

04-30-2011, 08:30 PM
I enjoyed all the paintings and the conversations. Picked up a lot of pointers too. Thanks to Robert for hosting and the word about Gallery extra soft oil pastels. I got a box and they are indeed good. I was fascinated by the abstract design possibilities of the tree with all the triangular shapes I saw and so help me God the 4 faces! I am attaching my take on the picture. I call it the family tree - dad, mom, teenager and baby!

04-30-2011, 09:12 PM
Robert thank you for hosting.

Gekai, wonderful piece. I really like what you did.

Thank you Crystal.

04-30-2011, 09:26 PM
Thank you Hal. I look at this as a work in progress. I have a long way to go before I am done with this piece

Pat Isaac
05-01-2011, 07:14 AM
Thanks, Robert and I agree with Hal. That is a wonderful piece.


05-01-2011, 01:13 PM
I really really wanted to take part in this but I got sidetracked by other projects and thwarted by materials that annoyed me. But I maight still have a go and finsihn the work once I get home.

05-01-2011, 02:41 PM
Gekai, this is wonderful! I love the faces you found and the mood of your painting. If it's not finished, don't overwork it - it's glorious the way it is. This is incredible. Beautiful and fascinating! Took me a while to find them but they're all so interesting!

Lin, looking forward to seeing the finish after the month's over. Thank you for having a go - and life always interferes. I didn't post here as often as I wanted to either or do as many of them as I wanted, but as usual it'll stay open, just not stickied. Right?

Big thanks to everyone who participated and painted! This month's images are a joy to me and I love all your cats and landscapes!

05-01-2011, 05:37 PM
Many thanks for the kind feedback, Vicki and Robert. It was easy to do something expressive with a model like Ari. :P

Gekai - I don't know what there is about your picture, but I find it strangely compelling. Nicely done.

05-08-2011, 07:30 AM
Here is my abomination. We learn from our challenges and despite these being called 'oil pastel boards' I cannot see how they differ from white coated textured board. I added another coat of Gesso and one with fine grit. I couldn't get past the first layer ofOP. Everytime I tried to add OP it wouldn't lay down - not even Senns, then when I pressed hard it just lifted it off again. Blen ding was virtually impossible, even with fingers it just lifted off..http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-May-2011/179312-smiley_headbanger.gif

These boards - never again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So here it is finally and frustratingly finished!

9" x 12" 'Oil Pastel' :lol: board
mixed OPs

When i saw the refs I was overjoyhed and so wanted to do more, and more pieces but this one drove me nuts.

05-08-2011, 08:31 AM
For all the trouble you had, there's a whole lot of goodness here, Lin. I am learning so much from the experienced artists in this forum.

05-08-2011, 08:34 AM
I learned so much here too Leslie - I have developed much i feel over the 3 years I have been here,.

05-08-2011, 08:42 AM
Lin I think you did a marvelous job on the Lion.

I've been playing with oil sticks lately. I use them the same way I use oil pastels but the previous layer is completely hardened withing 24 hours and there is no lifting or blending with lower layers when subsequent layers are added.

05-08-2011, 09:50 AM
I like my oil sticks - might do somethine with them. On days i'm awake I spend so long trying to work out what to do with my rqare energy the time vanishes beforeI actually DO anything lol.

Pat Isaac
05-08-2011, 11:06 AM
I agree that there is are a lot of nice things going on in this painting. The soft muted colors are very nice. What kind of board was it??? Not sure if I ever heard of a board for OPs.


05-08-2011, 01:13 PM
i dont' know Pat - I bought them from a seller and it said on them 'Oil Pastel Boards' thought they might have been REeves as they do specialist ones but nope. i think they are Euro imports.