Red Rose Series #5, oil pastels

“There is nothing more difficult for a truly creative painter than to paint a rose, because before he can do so he has first to forget all the roses that were ever painted.”  Henri Matisse

Perhaps Matisse was speaking to me as I painted the latest in my red rose series, as the oil pastels melted between my fingers and one line stroke blurred into the other.  Painting a rose today was a lesson in forgetting every rose that came before ~

Red Rose series #5, an oil pastel (7×5) was painted on ochre tinted Mi-Teintes pastel paper using mainly Sennelier and Holbein brands.  Besides using my fingers as a painting tool, a painters knife and razor blade helped to create depth, and fractured color and light within the painting.

Thank you for checking in.  Have a wonderful weekend – click onto the image for a larger view.

Red Rose series 5



About Mary

Oil Pastelist
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44 Responses to Red Rose Series #5, oil pastels

  1. I of July says:

    the image creates a mood. very nice

  2. What a lovely rose! The transparent effect of the bottle is PERFECT! … 🙂

  3. Resa says:

    The melting pastels helped turn out a gorgeous solitaire rose!

  4. A beautiful red rose, Mary. I agree with Joanna about the neck of the vase. It was the first thing that caught my eye when I opened your post. I’m now imagining you with rose-red fingers. 😆

  5. Another lovely one, Mary.

  6. Yay! My Sunday treat!!!! 🙂 🙂

  7. jvandervlugt says:

    You have created a lovely rose. You know me, I also like looking at everything surrounding the “star” of the picture, and I also really like the colors of your background, and I LOVE how you created the vase, especially the neck. 👏👏

    • Mary says:

      Hi Joanna, thanks very much. Can’t tell you what it means for you to really look at the work and noticing the details. Actually had the bottle neck done several times, finally the third time was the charm with the various values of light and shadows. Thanks again!!

  8. Amy says:

    It’s so gorgeous! The large version makes a difference, a grand view!
    Thank you, Mary!

  9. Captured translucence of bottle admirably.

  10. Wow, Mary, your roses have a dreamlike quality that makes them even more amazing. Just loving what you’re creating. ❤️

  11. I love the quote from Matisse – oh so true. Another lovely study….reminding me that if we mere humans had invented the rose…there would be lines miles long of people waiting to view it. Through the rose once again we see the sheer glory of Mother Nature. Thank you, Mary and hoping you are enjoying a lovely weekend. Janet:)

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Janet – such a great quote from the master, glad you enjoyed! After number 5 in this series, I’ve decided that red is difficult to paint – to mimic the gorgeous red color of nature with oil pastels well it’s a test of perseverance and patience. The surface color helped tremendously in getting past the difficulty – in some cases giving the scene warmth and giving a deeper and richer feel to the red. Thank you so much and hope you have a wonderful week!

  12. Fabio says:

    Always a great post! Thanks so much, Mary!

  13. nutsfortreasure says:

    Nice quote and pretty rose Mary.

  14. debiriley says:

    great quote! and I adore how you have filled the bottle with such Light. The background has been done beautifully! lovely painting 🙂

    • Mary says:

      Hi Debi, thanks so much and for mentioning the bottle and light. The effects on the bottle were interesting to get – lots of layers of paint and in between, a sort of smashing the paint with a painters knife and then scraping with a razor. It was fun to develop this aspect of the scene.

      • debiriley says:

        my pleasure Mary! I’m always looking…for the light! that sounds funny, too. lol but its the first thing my eye goes to in a painting. its sooo… restful and spacious, I feel. well done!

  15. What a perfect quote for you, Mary. And your rose, it’s quite perfect too! Excellent work!

  16. Evelyne is correct, enlarging your paintings is a real viewing experience! I like the deep red of the rose, I like the background but what I really appreciate is how you manage to render the glass of the bottle…not easy but you are a master 🙂

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Robert and for opening the image, it gives a totally different feel for the painting. I really enjoy painting glass bottles, thank you for noticing and complimenting. I read a long time ago (and have also been told) to paint what I see, not what I think is there – that piece of advice really helped me a lot with painting glass vases.

      • “to paint what I see”…yes, it’s what my teacher tells me…the difficult thing is to learn to see properly 🙂

        • Mary says:

          Great comment Robert, you are so right. While the glass vases might be one of my easier subjects (except cut-glass would be a nightmare!), many other subjects is very difficult for me. To read lines, angles and proportions – this trio is often the most difficult for me to manage. Your last line, “the difficult thing is to learn to see properly . . .” sums it up perfectly!

  17. Please, everyone, click to enlarge the photo. This rose is gorgeous. Sorry, Mary, for my long absence. I was busy finishing up a novel. Hope all is well for you.

    • Mary says:

      Wonderful to see you Evelyne again! Thank you for your lovely response to the painting and for enlarging the image. Very excited to hear that you are finishing up a new novel, very exciting news. Congratulations ~

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