And yet over the years I have admired so many pastel artists' works; I even subscribe to Pastel Magazine. Then, this morning while having my first 400 cups of coffee, I read through the latest issue that just arrived yesterday. I was bowled over once again by the beauty, the softness, the fine nuances of the colors.
So while taking a morning walk, I mentally charged myself to go back to the drawing board, literally. This time I would not dawdle with accuracy; I would aim for swiftness and mass, huge chunks of colors on a watercolor background, working into the wetness for that lovely smudged aspect.
Who are my favorite pastel artists? First and foremost, Wolf Kahn. I have several of his books and review them frequently.
|Swift Skies, 6" x 9"|
|Morning in January, 5" x 7"|
I found that today, after several hours of working quickly, that I liked working on 150 lbs. heavy bristol paper by Canson, usually used for comic and manga drawing. It held up well under the watercolor and multiple applications of the pastels.
|High Summer, 8" x 10"|
As I moved, I found myself becoming braver about using my fingers and the sides of my hand to smooth and smudge. Pastels are quite forgiving and change is possible without losing momentum.
|Early Autumn on the River, 5" x 7"|
How do I feel after today's attempts? Not too shabby! I think I may have finally moved to another stage in my development using pastels. They are immediate; they are forgiving and they are certainly easy to transport for quick sketches, etc.
I think I will continue to pursue pastels, especially during these dreary months of winter. To have this array of lush colors before me is the best tonic.
I don't think I have enough, though. Guess I better take a trip to the art store, don't you?