Archive for the ‘pastel’ Category

move over Mona, make room for Bianca Sforza

February 9, 2012

Looking through the latest National Geographic, I came across the story of a drawing that is purported to be a lost Leonardo da Vinci portrait of the illegitimate daughter of a patron in Milan (why can’t I have a patron???).  This kind of story excites me to no end.  Discovery, art, intrigue…turns out this undiscovered masterpiece was done for a book!   You can read all about it or better yet go watch the episode on Nova.  As of writing this, it was airing online.

I was inspired to make a copy of it with easily gathered materials I could use on the couch while watching television.  No sheep or goat-skin parchment around this studio and a pen nib and ink might have been messy between me and two cats, so I used paper (my sketchbook) and pencils, then I added some nu-pastels.  It was a fun exercise and I am rather pleased with my result.

The image is about 5×7.

I have been fascinated by book binding since I was a kid, sitting on a pew in church on Sunday, studying the hymnbook’s construction.  That was the first book I took note of  a book being sewn together.  (Captive that I was and nothing else to do!!!)  I wondered how that was done.  Now I know and find it satisfying to do.  Not so, my 88 year old friend, Pam Windham, who became a book-binder after her stint in the Coast Guard during WWII.  She was called into the office one day by her boss who told her she was wasting her life binding books (no way!!!) and that she needed to go back to school to do something worthwhile. Like binding books isn’t worthwhile, but  she did and became a worthwhile teacher.

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sunday afternoon covered in pastel

September 4, 2011

Seems if I am not doing birds, I am doing faces.  Here is a Sunday afternoon sketch in pastel pencil.

This sketchbook paper didn’t really have enough “tooth” to hold layers of pastel so I was rubbing the pastel in to the point of making my fingers raw making it overly blended (I know I shouldn’t use my fingers, toxic pigments and all, I did switch to a stump after a while…), but the scan made the image a bit more grainy than the original.

I hope you all have  a great holiday tomorrow.  Don’t labor too much!

Another Cicada

August 5, 2011

paper size – 18.5″x11″

Now to translate this into thread…

learning to make do

August 3, 2011

I want so much to take a printmaking course and buy a press.  (If  I am telling you my wants, I might as well add that I also want a tapestry loom and and the space to place a tapestry loom and a press!)  For now, I will have to make do with the supplies I do have, in the space available.  I do have watercolors, ink pens and pastels so I decided to try to get the look of a print.  Not so sure I achieved that goal, perhaps I was carried away with darkening the background for that effect, although they look lighter and more consistent in the originals.  I like the carried away effect of the ink lines.  And there is no duplicating of the imprint the plate makes on a print.  I love that imprint!

Le Coq was done from fellow blogger, Jennifer’s photo of a rooster.  You can see it here.  These are done on approx. 11×17 sheets of paper.

Blue Ribbon Nest II

May 18, 2011

My watercolor needed punch so I added pastel and ink.  I am not the purist I use to be.  Compare this to my thread painting here.  I think I like the tread painting more.  The thread painting  sold, which I am very happy about, but it may also be the first time I really miss something I created.

Snow Day 2

January 11, 2011

My very talented friend, Carol Massey, has for the past two days motivated some of her artist friends with an email asking how they intended to spend their snow day confinement.   Just being asked how you intend to spend your day is motivation to do something and not just piddle the day away.  Carol managed to create a wonderful pastel portrait yesterday and it was inspirational.

This painting was done mostly in watercolour but has a goodly amount of pastel and gesso on it too.  The base watercolor of a building (can you see it?) had been done perhaps 5 years ago and the woman was added today.

Can’t wait to see how Carol inspires me tomorrow!