Sunday, March 29, 2009

Pastel Class Update and Finished Quilts

Well, what an interesting two weeks it has been. I have a new granddaughter, Emma Kathryn Marie, born on 3-16-09. Such a gorgeous little girl!

We also had a huge snowstorm on Thursday of this past week. We had about 10-12" in our neighborhood. By Friday it was 50 and beautiful in the afternoon. Today the winds are fierce and I think another "something" is blowing in.

Yesterday was pastel class. We didn't meet last week as the Terry Ludwig Studio (where we paint) was being used for a workshop by Lorenzo Chavez. By the time I found out about the workshop it was full.

In yesterday's class I worked on getting some color built up in the background. Two weeks ago Deb had said my background was too bright, which made the light side of my vase have to be lighter and I had no room (valuewise) to get my highlights in. She also asked me to think about the color of the atmosphere???!!! The only thing that came to my mind was the little dust motes that float by your eyes in bright sun. I knew that's not what she was talking about.

Yesterday she said think about atmospheric perspective in a landscape. Landscape 101 students know that the further back in space you go your mountains, trees, etc get more blue/gray and less distinct. So even in a still life, although your depth of space is much less and may be only inches, you can still use atmospheric perspective to your advantage. The background would be less bright than it appears. I tried to create more of a neutral/gray color using a light olive green and a mauve-y pink.

I really like the texture (sans blending), but it's going to take more practice to get my shapes to look correct using the scribble-y stroke. For anyone who might remember my early colored pencil work I drew circles.....this feels more like that process....and I like working this way..but it's not looking very realistic at this point. Another's a good thing I love challenges.

So grow along with me folks! Challenge yourself to go outside your comfort zone!

Two Quilts Finished

The above quilt is called "Old Town Star" and is 14" square. The quilt below is called "Americana Star" and is 13" square. The are both created using a folded design technique...I promise I will show how to do that one of these days.

After the binding was stitched down on these two quilts, I soaked them in a good long "aging bath".....a mixture of about 1 gallon of water and 1/4 cup of instant coffee granules. Make sure the granules are dissolved before you put the quilt in or you will have a more "spotty" look rather than an overall aging. I then heat set them in the dryer. They are for sale on my Littleton Studio shops on Etsy and 1000Markets.


Beth said...

Congratulations on the new grandbaby! So cool! And thanks for sharing what your pastel teacher has suggested to you. I enjoy hearing these little tips that other artists can give.
I'm sure you are ready for spring too!

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Cindy - how you get time for two creative hobbies I have no idea!

Congrats on the new grandchild. My guess is you have a few treats in store for her! ;)

Have you ever tried using bigger pieces of pastel and dragging them rather in the same way as somebody with a brush might make a mark? Makes for bigger marks and more thought before you put them down. Which is a challenge!

My interpretation of "the color of the atmosphere" was that she was talking about the colour of light - so her follow-up discussion about atmospheric perspective comes as no surprise.

Sally Strand once told me she makes a small mark of her lightest light and darkest dark when she starts a pastel and uses that to keep her value range in check. I tried it and it works!