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Old 05-02-2012, 03:31 PM
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Marsh Study

Oil Pastels: Holbeins, Neopastels, Senns and Mungyo
6 x 9: pastel paper

A new marsh study using a demonstration in Susan Sarback book, Capturing Radiant Light & Color.

Continuing my studies from mentioned book, the objective is to explore the use of color, light and shadows. I'm not sure if this level of brilliance, using full-color spectrum, is the route I ultimately want to take in my paintings, but I can see the benefits it would have on certain subjects. I do like her process though, and have picked up many tips that I'll be able to incorporate into future paintings.

Interested in your feedback and comments. Thanks, Mary

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Old 05-03-2012, 12:19 AM
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Re: Marsh Study

I really like the color harmony here, Mary. I like the way the marsh is portrayed as well. All of it looks great to me except the grass in the lower right hand corner. It kind of looks like flat land that has been turned upward on the canvas. Would it look better with some detailed grass stalks going up instead of those finger like projections?
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:16 AM
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Re: Marsh Study

The colors are very pleasing for me to look at.

My hand skills for painting are very poor right now, but I've been trying to see light better with photography, so I hope this is ok to say.

Your bright sky, mid-left, defines where the light is coming from - maybe just above the frame of the image, but without the reds of sunset or sunrise, so maybe a little higher than just above. Looking at this picture, I want to know why is there such a darkness to the lower left.

I think you've painted a shadow here. It is an absolutely beautiful shadow too! You've certainly succeeded at painting a pretty shadow. I just don't see a reason for a shadow to be here, but this maybe isn't the purpose of this study.

Thank you for providing the reference. From what you've read so far, how applicable do you feel the book would be to other media?
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:33 AM
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Re: Marsh Study

Very nice colouring to this and you're getting a good sense of light.

The shadow doesn't bother me - it could be a passing cloud out of the picture plane. In fact I think that area could do with being larger.
I feel that the middle island could do with being more irregular in shape for more interest.

Mek42 - It is applicable to most media, I,ve used it with oils and soft pastels (which are the media Susan talks about) as well as oil pastels, acrylics and coloured pencils.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:56 AM
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Re: Marsh Study

Mary

Here is a thread you may be interested in which introduced me to this method
Still-Life the Colourful Way! It is by colorix (Charlie) who paints this way. It is soft pastels and still life, but still applicable.
Many of Charlie's paintings are landscapes and always have a wonderful sense of colour.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:21 AM
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Re: Marsh Study

Hi Dwayne: Thank you and great comments. Good observation on the lower-right grass area - I noticed the same thing before I originally posted the thread. So I went in and painted tall reeds going different directions and when I took a photo (several) none of the reeds showed. So no matter how I worked photoshop they didn't show.

Here is what I think happened - this support is pastel paper (which I hate using because of it has heavy wide-texture that leaves white checks all over the surface no matter how it's blended in [but I'm trying to use up my supply w/these studies). Because of this and the bright background colors used, I think it prevented the camera from picking up the reeds. I'm going to try later today and will use perhaps a darker OP such as burnt sienna or even prussian blue to see if they stand out. If it works I'll repost.

Hi mek42: Thank you for your comments. Good eye, what's not showing is a tree casting this shadow that the viewer doesn't see - author of the book left it out of her painting. I thought it was odd at first also, because of the brilliance of the sun, as a viewer your inclination would be to wonder why it's there. But thank you for your feedback on the shadow, because that is an area I've been working on.

Good question: Susan Sarbark wrote the book w/oils and pastels in mind. I'm using it as a guide even though I work with oil pastels - most of it is interchangeable. She has included some useful tips and information w/re to color and light for painting landscapes, as well as still life (easy format to read and absorb).

Hi Marion: Thank you so much for your feedback. I'm working on light, as well as color. TX is very dry and almost colorless in the summers, but I've found the colors to be far from lacking in brilliance - very exciting during sunrises and sunsets. This will be an area I want to concentrate on once I'm done with these studies.

Thank you for the thread. I will definitely check it out.
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