Thursdays Drawing: Takakkaw Falls, #5


Thursdays drawing project is coming along – today was spent in starting the beginning development of the pine trees in the foreground, as well as .  .  .

Takakkaw Falls is a graphite drawing (12×9) on Bristol Vellum paper using 2H and HB graphite pencils.  A tortilium and a kneaded are two tools being used to move and blend the graphite.  As mentioned the pine trees are just beginning to show, mostly they will be developed with squiggly lines, a tortilum to blend, the kneaded eraser to kind of blot out sections and then I start the drawing process all over again.  It’s a way to draw full pine trees with some depth and in this case they need to come more forward than the slabs of rock.  Rocks on the lower-right-side are beginning to be drawn in.  The waterfall is starting to take shape as well.

Notice the wolf, he has been worked on – taking shape and becoming slightly more dominant to the piece.  I decided if he’s going to be in the drawing, might as well play a supporting role.  My first time drawing a wolf ~ I think I’ll leave well enough alone.

Thanks for checking in.  Next week work will continue on the left-lower corner of the rocks and all the foreground trees will be completed.  Click onto the image for a larger view.

Takakkaw Falls #5

Takakkaw Falls #5

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Apple Tree, oil pastel – a painting WIP diary


I thought you might enjoy seeing how Apple Tree was developed as an oil pastel painting.

First, an underpainting was done using acrylic white and ultramarine paints.  Limiting to one color to concentrate on only forms and values of the scene.  This was a cool underpainting, I could have easily turned the painting into a seascape with a raging sea – do you see it too?

Underpainting Apple TreeNext step was paint in the sky (cobalt blues) and establish the darks (Sepia, Indigo Blue and touches of dark-cool grays) in the apple tree and begin to develop the background landscape.  The painting was set aside for a bit because I needed to figure out how to do the background orchard without it interfering with the foreground tree leaves and blossoms, and not be too complex with detail.

DSCN9146 infraviewIt was decided on mid and light-value range colors (mid and light-value Vandyke Brown of Holbeins, and cool-grays) for the background orchard.  Once painted, I was able to scratch a bit of the paint back to letting the ultramarine show through some.  Also I worked on the mid-ground tree allowing the underpainting to show through for a little depth to the scene.  and finally the foreground grasses were beginning to be established.

DSCN9168Next, some tree branches on the foreground tree were worked in so I could establish the knobby shape of the apple tree, additional tree trunks in the background were developed, a wood fence was painted into the scene and more foreground grasses and a footpath.  The grasses were painted in, then scraped away to find patterns, then painted in again.  It’s a process that I follow to develop thick patches of grass.

DSCN9180 infraviewFinally the leaves and blossoms were painted in – once the initial dark and medium layers were laid down, I scraped them with a razor blade to smooth them out a bit, spread the OPs and also to establish patterns.  I used a painters knife to scrape onto the surface flower blossoms and leaves that would stand out – many colors were used here (pinks, magentas, whites and creams).  The darks pushed the apple tree forward giving it some distinction from the background orchards.  Various other aspects of the foreground grasses and background orchards were more fully established using a painters knife.  Notice that there is a lot of the underpainting peeking through the foreground grasses.

The final, Apple Tree (10×8) ~ click onto the image for a larger view.

Apple Tree with text

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PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

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Apple Tree, oil pastel


Talk about character  .   .   .  apple trees are loaded with them.  Each tree having branches  with large knobs and elbows – they are a fascinating fruit tree to see and the older the tree the more pronounced these characteristics become.

Apple Tree, an oil pastel (10×8) was painted on a gesso-prepared hardboard with Senneliers and Holbeins brand OPs.  An acrylic underpainting was done using only ultramarine and white for establishing forms and values, but also to allow the color to peek throughout the painting.

Apple blossoms are loaded with delicate hues of pink and when in bloom orchards look like large bouquets of pink flowers as far as the eye can see.  There is nothing like seeing an orchard in bloom with clear blue skies ~ it’s a scene that I never grow tired of.  Click onto the image for a larger view.

Apple Tree

My interpretation of a reference photograph taken by my friend, Steve Lyddon, not only a very talented artist, but photographer as well from pmp.

DON’T TAKE MY IMAGES!! MY ART IS COPYRIGHTED.
PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

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Thursday’s Drawing: Takakkaw Falls, #4


Today I spent a little more than an hour on the drawing.  The project is more complex than I originally thought and will take many hours to complete, which is okay it’s just that you’re going to see this scene for several more weeks ~

Takakkaw Falls, a graphite drawing (12×9) is being drawn on Bristol Vellum paper – using only 2H and HB graphite pencils, and a tortilum for blending.  The slabs of rock continued to be developed today, and the left-side of the waterfall was started.

I expected to see a lot more progress today, but I’m having to feel my way around portions of the rocks where the bulk needs to be more prominent – this is more of a give and take process – right now they look flat next to the waterfall.  Also I’m starting the waterfall, while I know the look I want to project, it’s not materializing yet.  I think during the coming week I’ll use scrap paper to see if I can’t figure out how to get the weight and full force/energy of the water to project more – form and value management will be key here.

So many saw the wolf’s head last week.  Well here we go again, not wanting to disturb the head, late in the drawing session I started drawing in the far right rock wall abutting the water fall, and what do you know?  After I took the photograph what did I noticed?  The leg!  I’m serious and really this hasn’t happened in a drawing before.  Do you see it?  There is no question the wolf will be left in – something is telling me it’s there for a reason.

Thanks for checking in ~ click onto the image for a larger view.

Takakkaw Falls #4

Takakkaw Falls #4

Posted in Drawings, Thursday Drawings | 53 Comments

Orchard Path, oil pastel


It’s my 40th high school reunion (can’t believe it, seems like we graduated only yesterday – too bad I won’t be able to join the celebration today).  In spirit of that special time and where we grew up, I’ve painted a scene that they can all relate too ~ we grew up around cherry and apple orchards, and the area still holds an annual apple blossom festival.

Orchard Path, an oil pastel (11×14) was painted on a gesso prepared hardboard using Senneliers, Holbeins and Mungyo-Gallery brand OPs.  An acrylic underpainting was done in light-to-medium grayish-green tones for the background allowing the white blossoms to hold their own in the scene.  A painters knife was used to work up grass textures in the foreground.

It’s been months since I painted a landscape, so it took some getting used to manipulating the oil pastels a bit differently than what is be done for a seascape or flowers.  But in any event this was a good scene to get back into the swing of things.

Click onto the scene to view a larger image.

Orchard Path The reference image was from Irini Adler an awesome photographer and artist from pmp.  I took a lot of liberty in interpreting the scene, but I don’t think she would mind.

DON’T TAKE MY IMAGES!! MY ART IS COPYRIGHTED.
PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

 

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Thursdays Drawing: Takakkaw Falls, #3


Today I was able to spend a good two hours drawing and made nice progress on the big slabs of rocks of Takakkaw Falls ~

Takakkaw Falls, a graphite drawing (12×9) is being drawn on Bristol Vellum paper – using only 2H and HB graphite pencils, and a tortilum for blending.  My objective is to use Sfumato technique (giving a smokey appearance, for this drawing it would be coming in from the sides), but I’m finding this takes a great deal of focus and discipline to not over do the rock formation details on both sides of the drawing – I hope I’m able to stick with the plan and not go overboard with detail.  But darn I do love drawing rocks, for me it’s a relaxing and mesmerizing process building the character of the rocks (cracks, crevices and water stains) that I could do for hours.  Which is what could also get me in trouble, again working in too much detail.

I see several areas that need more buildup of shading for the shape and form of some rocks that play a more significant role in the over all scene that I’ll take care of next week.  In addition the other work will concentrate on the middle rocks immediately surrounding and are behind the falls.

Do you see the wolf head?  Didn’t realize that the point I left off today, ending up looking just like a wolf looking down into the Falls – how funny!  Thanks for checking in ~ click onto the image for a larger view.

Takakkaw Falls #3

Takakkaw Falls #3

Posted in Drawings, Thursday Drawings | 51 Comments

Past the Dune, oil pastel


All good things must come to an end, at least for this year ~ the last of the sand dune series.  I’ll bet you are ready to move on, me too and have several new subjects/paintings started ~

Past the Dunes, an oil pastel (5×7) painted on a prepared Ampersand Board.  Oh this was one interesting painting to do – it was started some 10 days ago, but I couldn’t quite get happy with the colors and feel to the piece.  There was no underpainting with this piece, whites of the board kept showing through the grass – no matter what colors I added there stood the whites.  With a good couple of swipes with a razor blade, I’ve got to say some gorgeous blends started to come together, and the rest they say is history.  I purposely keep the scene with a hazy-like feel to the atmosphere – letting the warmth of the day meet the viewer as they make their way down to the water.

Here’s to a lazy day at the beach ~ click onto the image for a larger view.

Past the DuneDON’T TAKE MY IMAGES!! MY ART IS COPYRIGHTED.
PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

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Pea Island, oil pastel


“Pea Island is an island which is part of the Outer Banks of North Carolina” per Wikipedia ~ that’s the location of my latest oil pastel subject.

Pea Island, an oil pastel (7×15) was painted on cream tinted Mi-Teintes pastel paper using mainly Senneliers, Holbeins and Mungyo-Gallery brand OPs.  Tools used for blending and laying in the paint were my fingers, a razor blade and a painters knife.

The sand dune in the reference image looked as if it was raked through, giving it beautiful distinctive lines coming down from the top of the dune.  I recently read in Kenneth Leslie’s book “Oil Pastels:  Tools and Techniques for Today’s Artist” (here’s a link for my book review) that when painting on paper, you can create impressions by applying pressure with an instrument.  I figured why not try it for the raked sand dune using a blunted fork.  The impressions came out great, only they weren’t angled properly so I scraped them out and worked up different patterns for the dune.  If you are interested:  skim over the surface with paint leaving the impressions empty allowing you to fill them in later with paint or leave them empty of the medium.

Thanks for checking in.  Click onto the image for a larger view ~

Pea IslandThe reference image used was from Stuart Swain of pmp.

DON’T TAKE MY IMAGES!! MY ART IS COPYRIGHTED.
PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

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Thursdays Drawing: Takkakaw Falls, #2


Thursdays drawing continues with project, Takkakaw Falls ~

Takkakaw Falls, a graphite drawing (12×9) is being drawn on the smooth side of Bristol Vellum paper, using 2H and HB graphite pencils.  If you recall my goal is to utilize as much as possible sfumato technique which is to minimize details and create a fog (smokey-like) atmosphere.  One of the techniques I’m also utilizing in this is to keep the values down to two (2H and HB), which is a bit of a challenge for me as I like to utilize as many as possible within a drawing.  But for this drawing, it’s the illusion of smoke-like atmosphere that I’m trying to create – I have to stay focused on what I’m doing.  That also means on the outer edges of the drawing details needs to be kept to a raw minimum – so once I was done drawing today I took a sable brush and gave the left-side a good brushing so as to blur some of the rock details.  There is still a good deal more to be drawn on the left-side, but for today it was a good start.

The main question I’ll have to answer every week during this project, is how much rock detail to draw in and when to push the values for shadows and lights – get this right and I’ll be half-way there in working towards my goal.

Thanks for checking in.  Click onto the image for a larger view ~

Takkakaw Falls #2

Takkakaw Falls #2

Posted in Drawings, Thursday Drawings | 38 Comments

To the Beach, oil pastels


Work continues with painting sand using oil pastels .  .  .  this week we start with another beach scene to take all of us land-locked folks to the shore.  Maybe we’ll have a clam bake, fly a kite or just sit back and read a good book ~

To the Beach, an oil pastel (9×12) was painted on an artist canvas board using mainly Senneliers, Holbeins and Mungyo-Gallery OPs.  Not my favorite surface, as the tooth fills up quickly, even with a coat or two of clear gesso – so for this particular painting a lot of scraping was done using a razor blade that helped to find textures in the grass and patterns in the sand.  Realizing I opened up the right-side of the painting between the grasses (not good for composition, gives the viewer an escape) a few springs of sea grass were added here and there to discourage leaving the painting before a visit down to the beach.

Please enjoy the sea breeze .  .  .  click onto the image for a larger view.

To the Beach The reference was from Carol Theologo an awesome artist and photographer with pmp.

DON’T TAKE MY IMAGES!! MY ART IS COPYRIGHTED.
PLEASE DON’T COPY OR USE THE IMAGE WITHOUT RECEIVING MY PERMISSION FIRST – SEE DISCLOSURE ON THE RIGHT PANEL.

Posted in About Oil Pastels, OPs New Paintings | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 81 Comments