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Old 11-01-2004, 12:21 PM
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Smile Christmas Card

Hi! I am going to be cross-posting this in Illustration and Colored Pencil.

I am working on a colored pencil of a wreath for our company’s Christmas card. I am leaving the company logo out of the center, but it is going to be a golden like the type and transparent. This is the second big project that I have been asked to do at my job (the first being an Oil Pastel) and I am really excited about it. I am going to be browsing the forum to get more information, but also wanted your experienced input since I haven’t done a colored pencil since I was a sophomore in college (graduated in 1999) but I know that it will be like getting back on a bicycle (as long as I re-read the manual before getting back on!) And all other comments regarding design and anything else are very much welcomed. I am seasoned at handling criticism and don’t break easily at all.

I will be using Prismacolor pencils and will be working on green paper. The actual size of the wreath alone will be 16” x 16” not including the rest of the composition. I don’t have a ton of questions YET but will be looking into burnishing techniques, how to keep vibrancy of colors on green paper (maybe underlying white first – not even sure what the issue will be until I get a test strip of the actual paper that I will be using), and any and all other techniques that would be applicable to this piece.

This is the mockup that I have created in Photoshop for the approval process. (It was approved last week and I am going shopping for paper and any other supplies later this afternoon.)

Thanks a bunch!!!
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Old 11-01-2004, 01:42 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

i think since you might find it easier to do on a white paper. if you do it on say a white hotpress watercolor paper, frisket out the wreath, and then do a wash over the background in that green it might be easier...then you can go back in with your cp's to color in the texture of the background.

alternately since these are for xmas cards you could just do the wreath on white, then scan that and a swatch of the paper into the computer and using PS drop the wreath onto the green paper...seems to me that would be easier.
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Old 11-01-2004, 01:52 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Hi Arlene!

Thank you for your ideas. I had thought about white and it is still definitely an option.

I guess I opted for the green paper for a couple of reasons. My company likes to frame the original artwork - so it has to be an actually piece of art... not elements of. (Although by putting in my own wash of green would be doable as well.) So I thought of getting the green paper and using it to tie the wreath nicely to it by using elements of some of the paper throughout the greenery. Then when I dropped it into Photoshop, if I still wanted to use the digital paper that I used in the Photoshop image, it would be easy to drop it in without worry of it looking so cut and pasted. Subtly merging the two backgrounds together.

I have some hot press watercolor paper here so I will definitely have the option. Gives me something to think about.

Thanks!
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Old 11-01-2004, 04:23 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Another option would be to colour white paper with powdered soft pastel/s...
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Old 11-01-2004, 04:34 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Thanks guys for your ideas. I was able to test some papers and went with a paper that was in the mid/light tones of the green. I could get my contrast with the colored pencil in both directions. So we will see how it goes. I will be spending today transfering the design.

Thanks!
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Old 11-01-2004, 07:33 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Arlene - I wandered into your website today - you have some very nice pieces of art. I look forward to learning more here.
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Old 11-01-2004, 08:28 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meldy
Arlene - I wandered into your website today - you have some very nice pieces of art. I look forward to learning more here.
thank you.
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Old 11-01-2004, 11:13 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

I just ordered "Capturing Soft Realism in Colored Pencil" and "The Colored Pencil Solution Book" after reading some of the archived threads. I should have them on Wednesday.

After reading through a lot of the WIP's and instructional and informative threads - I am very interested in many techniques and I am going to spend some of this week using scraps of the green paper to try some of them out. The last time I did a colored pencil was like I said as a sophomore in college, but while I was in highschool I did many animal portraits for pet owners in coloredpencil and really enjoyed it. That was soooooooooo long ago.

I really would like to tackle the background myself as arlene had suggested by doing a wash and then building up the variations in shades with the colored pencil, however due to a serious time constraint the green paper has to be the option to pull back on time. But perhaps I will do one at home where I can spend large amounts of time on it. And I am sure I will.

I am already juggling Oil Pastels and Soft Pastels, and Printmaking, so why not add Colored Pencil. Seems like so many artists here have their own "niche" - either I have yet to find mine and will in 10 years - or I am forever going to be a multitasker and struggle harder to get several consistant bodies of work together to show. Not Mulitlingual - Multimedial?
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Old 11-02-2004, 07:18 AM
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Re: Christmas Card

Meldy,

I enjoyed watching you create the OP piece, and I'm looking forward to this one as well. You have such talent!

Have fun with the CP's. They play well with OP's, ya know.

Christi
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Old 11-08-2004, 09:32 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Thanks Christi

Well I have transferred my drawing onto the actual paper now. I would say that the paper is in the midtone range of my greens (it is showing up a lot lighter in the post.) I know that it is hard to see the lines on the paper - but wanted to post my progress. I have been reading thru my two colored pencil books - "Capturing Soft Realism" and "Colored Pencil Solution Book" and have gotten all of the supplies that I need.

I do have one question for sure. Grisaille. I have never done this in colored pencil. I had always just started with color. I have to say that I like this technique. My question is is that since my paper isn't white, and isn't black, but rather a mid value - should I encorporate grisaille with reverse grisaille?

(Quickly scanning books for any other questions while I am here...)

Another thing that caught my eyes was to lift color with the reusable adhesive on the pine cones to give some texture to rough areas...

I also made color samples on strips of the green paper and labeled them.. cut them up and arranged them, and them laminated them into color cards.

The section on transparent colors will be quite useful for when I do the ribbon as I want parts of it to be slightly see thru so that the color of the ribbon interacts with the green.

Another thing is that I have been "trained" so to speak to build up all areas at the same time. A rule that my instructors called "feeding the birds." I don't want any dead birds on my hands. Just to give you a feel of how I will approach this.

Anyhow that is enough for now. The exciting part is about to start for me!
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Old 11-08-2004, 10:18 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

I have never heard it called "feeding the birds". Very clever! But now I feel guilty about working one area at a time on my latest horsie...I have DEAD BIRDS.

Looking forward to seeing your progress!

Christi
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Old 11-09-2004, 06:14 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Ok I have been working on the grisaille. I have read a couple of books and on-line links - and I just now found Arlene's thread of When Time Stopped. And yeah - I like her technique best. I now wish that I had used complementary colors - I am currently using French Grey 90% and white. I am trying my best to to get too heavy handed and am using a circle pattern. My idea was to layer in complementary colors afterwards.. for instance instead of using just my selection of greens - using reds and greens to get the colors I wanted.

Sorry for the poor photo - camera was about to die and I had to take what I could.

P.S. If the middle looks a little off it is because I am photoshopping out the logo for now.
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Old 11-09-2004, 07:07 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

This looks extremely promising - get those batteries charged!
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Old 11-09-2004, 08:59 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

This is a great beginning!

It would also be a very classy card just done with white and the colour you are using, which obviously you know how to handle so well... And since the paper is a greenish shade, some odd touches of green. Mmmmmmm...! Yummy!
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Old 11-09-2004, 11:25 PM
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Re: Christmas Card

Although not crystal clear I am liking what I can see of your artwork -get that damned camera up to speed!!! LOL

Your wreath is looking very intricate and beautiful already, I am very much looking forward to seeing some progress shots!!


Big Hugs,


ALI

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