Wednesday, 12 February 2014

A colourful sky, a pastel painting

Painting has been taking a back seat recently as I have been very busy and also decided to start my very first novel. But I still manage to get to my art group, once a week for a couple of hours so it is great that I can usually complete one of my landscapes in that time.

This one for instance, one which I really like and received some very good comments from my colleagues at the art group.

But painting it was more involved than it might appear.

Starting with an A4 sheet of black general purpose art paper (cheap!), I covered the paper with a layer of black pastel. Simple linear strokes with the side of a softish pastel stick (origin unknown). This was then blended all over using circular strokes with the tips of three fingers and then fixed using an inexpensive hair spray.

I repeated this procedure twice using a mid-blue pastel and then a dark violet pastel. This was the background.

The next step was to use a mid-brown, again on its side, to paint in the top of the horizon at the bottom of the painting. below this a dark green was wiped across the painting. These colours were blended where they overlapped, and then grass-like strokes were added at the extreme bottom in a lighter green and other colours.

Cloud shapes were the next step. A light and mid-violet were used to create the main shapes and then a red to top off these shapes. A mid-blue was then added to create texture around the clouds.

Next, a red-brown was used -on its side- to create the colouring on the horizon. This was blended in a single direction (up) using the side of the thumb to create the spiky appearance. More colours were added at the horizon to ground this colour. I am not sure what it represents, make your own mind up but it does help the composition.

And finally, some dark brown was added and blended along the lighter brown of the horizon.

Here is a shot of the original from a book :-

it is in Ron Ranson's Painting School Series, PASTELS by Diana Constance.

Mine is not meant to be a reproduction of the original, I always aim to create a  painting from a reference which inspired me without copying. 

Perhaps this is more involved than you thought after all.

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