Thursdays Drawing, Gentle Compassion

Oh my, 12 weeks and I’m finally presenting to you the final results of Gentle Compassion.

This was a great exercise for me to engage in and so glad that Lisa, from Zebra Designs and Destinations (, encouraged us to begin drawing again.  Wonderful way to get focused on details and seeing what’s really in front of me and draw it out.

The title came about from a feeling I got immediately from a reference image that I based this drawing off of, definitely a connection between horse and human thus the title, “Gentle Compassion.”  The photographer/artist Ruth Archer, of pmp, is known for capturing her subjects in an intimate way and bringing emotion to a flat surface.  As some of you know the subject was a retired racing horse called, Pacific Reach, who recently passed away.

Graphite pencils were used for the horse, hand and fabric because I wanted the shine from the graphite to  influence these three areas.  Charcoal was used for the background, because it leaves a flat appearance and then work texture in.  I finished it off by spraying it with a matt fixative.

Thank you for your patience with this weekly WIP, that I truly appreciate – I feel as though you all were a big influence on my sticking with this project.  Thank you, here he is . . .

Gentle Compassion

About Mary

Oil Pastelist
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54 Responses to Thursdays Drawing, Gentle Compassion

  1. Ruth Bailey says:

    Mary, you have caught some wonderful textures in this drawing. I like the contrast between the gnarled hand, the smooth fur of the horse’s face, and the folded fabric of the sleeve. What a beautiful image!

    • Mary says:

      Thanks so much Ruth for your wonderful comments, much appreciated. And so happy to read thoughts about those areas that appeal to you – thanks!

  2. Mary…all I can add is WOW! You have proved that patience and persistence pay off. Such a masterpiece.

  3. Xraypics says:

    I do so like the gnarled hand, you have really caught the spirit of the thing. Thankyou. Tony

    • Mary says:

      Thank you so much for your kind comment! The hand took a bit of a while to complete do I really appreciate that you noticed. Thanks for visiting ~

  4. Z sent me…she is so inspiring to many of us. She has touched you, as well. Your ART is absolutely brilliant!!!!

  5. Pingback: Timeout for Art: Discipline & Patience | Zeebra Designs & Destinations

  6. Doris says:

    Bravo! love it, it is full of detail, love who it looks so realistic like you want to touch the hand or the horse, like the background to, good job Mary you did an amazing job!

    • Mary says:

      Hi Doris, thank you very much for your generous comments – appreciate that you stayed with me on this drawing. On to the next, I think I have the subject selected – have to think through the process first to see if I can do the piece I’m considering. Thanks ~

  7. pommepal says:

    It is so life like I can feel the texture of the soft skin around the nostrils and the gentle breath of compassion

  8. I love it!! It’s been a pleasure to follow the development, and now see the end result! Such fine details in this painting. Very nicely done, Mary!!

    • Mary says:

      Hi Calee, thanks for sticking with the WIP until the end – appreciate it. Appreciate your wonderful comment, looking forward to starting my next drawing.

  9. I love every fold and whisker. Marvelous Mary!

  10. Tremendous in its details! I always loved pencil work. I have tried it once and posted it but it’s a while back.
    I felt that focusing on the details was a beautiful way to relax.
    Have a lovely weekend!

    • Mary says:

      Thank you! You are right, focusing on details takes away time and relaxes me to no end. I love it, although you won’t see me doodling on a piece of paper I’ve never gotten into drawing in that way – I need an objective for why I’m drawing something. I hope you draw some more once school starts back up.

  11. Petronette says:

    It was lovely to follow you in your drawing !
    Is there a new one coming soon ? 😉

    Your drawing is fantastic !!!
    I have my drawing materials also on the table. I am busy with the autonomy, and I am a little bit affraid of starting to draw a skeleton (it looks so difficult, with so many bones !!!).

    • Mary says:

      Hi Petronette, so you are nice! Thank you very much for your wonderful comments and yes, there is another follow-along, if you will, drawing project. I’m glad that you are getting back to drawing – just don’t stress too much about skelton/bones. Once you learn what you need from the class, put it in perspective and bring your emotional connection to whatever aspect of the human body you are drawing. Just enjoy, as I know you will!

  12. Sian Mann says:

    The texture of both the hand and the coat of the horse (unsure if that is the right term), is just astounding. Beautiful piece, captured so much emotion in it.

  13. nutsfortreasure says:

    Truly amazing artwork Mary. I love how it is so realistic. Like I could reach out and pet this horse as well I know in person it must be even better as photos are truly never as good at the real image. 🙂 Close but not the same 🙂

  14. artscottnet says:

    Exceptional work, Mary. I have enjoyed watching this work in progress; I’m almost sad it’s done! I’m hoping you’ll post your next extended project in the same way. This became a beautiful tribute to Pacific Reach, Lisa’s encouragement, Ruth’s inspirational work, and your own skill.

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Scott – was a whole lot of fun and got me right back into drawing again. Beautiful tribute in words to all that made this drawing possible – very moving. There are so many neat things that you can do with graphite and charcoal, I’m looking forward to my next project.

  15. Wonderful drawing Mary! The details on the hand and clothes is realistic. Great job! 😀

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Patricia – the hand took a long time, but I was glad I worked slow and deliberate on it because it is the focus of the drawing.

  16. prewitt1970 says:

    Stunning, on my best day I could never draw that well. Bravo

  17. doronart says:

    Mary it is amazing you can feel the touch, great work.

  18. Oh, Mary, this is so beautiful and well done!
    I can see Pacific Reach smiling…

  19. Excellent work!!!! Bravo.

  20. This is really something! Everything looks real and full of life! Fantastic!

  21. Healthy A-Z says:

    Wow! So life-like with great depth and texture. It feels like a close up of a magical moment. Mary, I can’t believe you haven’t been doing this all of your life.

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Cyndi for your generous comments – I was attracted exactly because it seemed magical to me. I always appreciate your feedback, thanks ~

  22. Mary, I really am speechless. just perfect in very way!

  23. Looks great Mary! Thanks for taking us on your artistic journey with this piece.

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