Friday, February 29, 2008

Pears and Cherries - Background done

For now the background is done. I have brushed and polished it so much that it looks like a piece of leather. I used a small bristle stencil brush, an oil bristle brush and a makeup sponge to do the smooshing and polishing.

The really wonderful part of the pastel board is that you can add a light over a highly saturated dark. So I may bring part of the color from the left side over into the middle or right side of the top later.

On to the shadows of the pears and cherries next.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Does the Creative Muse Visit You? Let's Play!

I've been reading alot about the creative process lately, and thinking about the idea of a creative muse. Your muse could be music, a studio routine, dreams, reading, talking with other artists, or maybe you have an honest to goodness creative muse that visits you.

I would love to hear your ideas on your creative muse....just hum a few bars of the old Beatles song, "Something in the Way She Muse" (sorry, couldn't resist).

My creative muse often visits me in a list. I like to take a subject like say.......Oh, quantum physics...and then write down all the phrases I can think of that go with the subject, for instance:

String Theory (did that one)
Parallel Universes
Black Hole
M Theory
Theory of Everything
Event Horizon

From there I start to visualize how I could set up a still life (since I mostly do still life), that might communicate some humor or a twist on one of the phrases. (I have a brand new Mr. Potato Head that I am still trying to figure out how to use in one of the above phrases.)

Try using the technique above if your muse is ignoring you. If you want to play, post your overall subject in a post, and then a few phrases that are associated. Then give one good idea for a new painting you might create.

I'll be out my studio from tomorrow until next Tuesday. I'm off to Sacramento for the spring meeting of the Colored Pencil Society of America Board. It will be very productive and lots of fun. I feel like I GET much more than I GIVE by being the National Membership Director for CPSA. Hopefully, I have some pics of Sacramento to share (I've never been there).

Monday, February 18, 2008

Pears & Cherries with Reflections-WIP

Starting a new piece, 11 x 14" on pastel board. The images work backwards in the process. Step 5. I have started in the background with various brands of colored pencil. I'm trying to achieve a background that looks more oil painterly (variations in color and strokes). I'm working right to left and still have work to do on the left.
Step 4. Inktense have been brushed (a smaller brush than the background) with water. The underpainting is now complete.
Step 3. Inktense were applied to the rest of the painting. Complementary colors were chosen for the shadow areas. A slightly darker color than the actual object was chosen for the lighter areas. (The cherries look like green olives with pimentos!)
Step 2. The Neocolors have been brushed with water.
Step 1. Neocolor II used in the background, and in the shadow area of the pears. It's still a dry medium at this point.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Big Ol' Tomater Finished

Two posts in one day?? Well, I finished this one and wanted to move on to my next project, whatever that might be.

"Big Ol' Tomater" 5 x 7" colored pencil on pastel board

Your Bucket List?

Hubby and I went to see "The Bucket List" with Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson yesterday. If you haven't seen the movie I won't give anything away, but as you can imagine the bucket list is all those things you would like to do before you kick the "bucket".

I started thinking about my own bucket list, places I would like to see, things I would like to experience. Since this is my art blog, I was also thinking about my "art bucket list".

Here are a couple of things on my art bucket list, what goes on your art bucket list??? I'd love to hear, and maybe we can inspire one another.

1. See one of my young students live their dream of becoming a professional artist.

2. While I'm in NYC seeing a Broadway play (on my regular life list), visit all the major galleries in NYC.

3. Paint the landscape of my Scottish ancestors...on location!

4. Find a "home gallery" for my art (fiber, and fine art) in Santa Fe, or some other art mecca.

OK.......Would you like to share yours???

Monday, February 11, 2008

Big Ol' Tomater Update

I had a chance to work on this a bit today. I'm trying out my Coloursofts by Derwent, and my Polychromos by Faber Castell. Love the way the Polychromos lay on the pastel board.

Today I worked with mostly with Poly Cad Red, and CSoft Red....the green you see in the shadow is the underpainting with the watersoluble products showing through. Trying to draw the water droplets as I go.

Hopefully, my next "sitting and I'll be able to finish this.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

I'm So Pleased.............................

To have been asked by one of my favorite artists (and now a new friend), Marsha Robinett, to be her first guest artist showcasing my fiber art.

Marsha works in carbon, charcoal and graphite creating wonderful warm drawings with AWESOME values. I left a note on her blog because I wanted her free print that she gives away when you sign up for her monthly newsletter. (Mention "free" and I'm there!) She came to visit my blog and the rest is history....

Link to the Extraordinary Pencil

Excerpt from the interview:
"The fiber art gives me a chance to play and make things up as I go along. My colored pencil work is very meticulous and the process is not as playful."

Friday, February 8, 2008

Big Ol' Tomater-WIP

Another colored pencil piece on 5" x 7" pastel board. It's looking pretty ugly right now, but I promise it will pull together. Once I photograph this with the colored pencil added it will look completely different.

I'm trying different products than I usually use. The underpainting is as far as I have progressed, and is done with a mix of NeoColor II watersoluble crayons, and Inktense watersoluble ink pencils. I find that the Inktense are easily sharpened and you can get into some smaller spaces.

The photo resource I am using is from Stock Xchng taken by Mehmet Goren. I have been using it for a class exercise.

Step 3. The shadows of the stem of the tomato have been underpainted with Bark and Fuschia Inktense. Highlights have been added with White Neocolors.

Step 2. The shadows of the tomato have been underpainted with Leaf Green Inktense, and Green Neocolor.

Step 1. The background has been underpainted with Black, Blue and a bit of Purple Neocolors.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Spotlight on Fellow Artist, Libby Kyer

Fellow Denver artist and CPSA member, Libby Kyer, has co-authored a new book titled, Today's Botanical Artists. Libby brought a copy of the book to the workshop on Saturday and it's gorgeous with 65 of the top artists throughout America. Here is a link to view the book:

The book signing is April 21, 2008 at the Denver Botanic Gardens, from 5-7 with refreshments and possibly some of the artwork displayed in person.

Here is a link to Libby's blog with a schedule of her classes at the Denver Botanic Gardens, and how to contact her.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Feb 2nd Colored Pencil Workshop

Some pictures from the workshop yesterday. Thanks "K8" for the pics. I took my camera, but of course, never thought to pick it up....

It was a great workshop, all of the participants created something to be proud of and learned a few things (I hope). I finally did tell them the workshop was all about values, disguised as working on black and the circular stroke.

We're planning our next workshop...stay tuned. Susan

Libby and Jan

Mary and Leslie

Kate (K8)

Heidi, Dorothy.... Maureen, Dee and Lynette in the background

Phyllis and Dori

Jeanne and Cheryl

Classroom at South Union Gallery

Friday, February 1, 2008

Acrylic Underpainting for Circular Stroke-WIP

The workshop is tomorrow, I'm prepared......and taking lots of chocolate in case they are an unruly bunch ;-) I know I have at least one "wild woman" in the group.

I hope to create some new art next week, but for now I thought I would share a WIP. This is done on hot press w/c paper, with an acrylic underpainting. The "riled up" tooth after the liquidy acrylic is applied supplies a great surface for colored pencil. Pears (8" x 7") Colored Pencil on Acrylic Donated to PBS Auction 2006

I chose the purple underpainting for the pears so the fleck of Purple would show through the Yellow complement. The table was painted with a dark brown acrylic, so that the oranges would make a nice coppery color.