Sunday, November 3, 2013

Back in the Saddle

My blog has been ignored lately, and for that I apologize.  It has been a crazy six months as I have a tendency to overcommit myself to non-art.  I've also been focusing on my Facebook page, since I am often on there anyway talking with geographically scattered friends and relatives.  And while Facebook has been attracting a lot of views, this blog seems to be attracting mostly spam.  But Facebook has its limitations; the biggest one being that it is difficult to "follow" if you are not on Facebook.  But I'm willing to try again for those loyal few who are legitimately following this blog and who justifiably have a dislike for social media.

Let's start with some more recent pastels, and then I'll work backwards a bit, interspersed with new works as they come along.

It's common for pastelists to mat their work, which means we often have scraps and bits of mat board just sitting around in a pile.  Another artist whose blog I follow, Karen Margulis, has said that she often uses scraps for quick studies and sketches, so I decided to give that a try.  I had two long narrow pieces in a warm dark grey that would work for panoramic scenes.  Here are the results:

Dormant 5x14 pastel, copyright 2013

End of Summer 6x16 pastel, copyright 2013

Turns out, this shape suits me quite well!  They ended up more as finished pieces than sketches but I am quite pleased with the results.  I'll admit to giving myself a little pat on the back for the snow scene in particular.  It can be a bit of a challenge to work out the composition on unusually shaped pieces, so I played around with cropping the reference photos first, then sketched them in charcoal and dark pastel until I was happy.  After that they almost painted themselves.

The Dayton Society of Painters and Sculptors has an annual invitational for new members each December, I've decided that the snow scene will be one of my entries.  The next challenge will be getting a custom frame!


  1. Love them both but especially the winter scene. I'm sure it'll do well for you.

    1. Thank you Sue! I'll admit, I did a little happy dance with that one. I just have to convince myself to leave it alone and not give in to the temptation of "just a little more yellow here". LOL