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Monday, August 27, 2012

Pastel Demo...I found my Stan Sperlak Pastels!

'The Moment of Truth'        9x12       pastel      ©Karen Margulis  SOLD
Did you ever put something in a safe place so you wouldn't misplace them?  Did you forget that it was there?  That's what I did a couple of years ago with my set of Terry Ludwig 'Stan Sperlak' pastels.

 I bought them at Stan's workshop and when I got home I put them on my pastel shelf. I didn't want to mix them into my studio box and I used them a few times. Until they got buried. If you have been following my Studio clean-up then you saw the 'before' photos of my pastel corner. I had so many unmarked boxes piled on top of one another. Sadly I didn't even know what treasures I had buried in the mess.

Imagine my excitement when I uncovered this box of special order Terry Ludwig pastels chosen and signed by Stan Sperlak. I had been stingy about using them for fear of using them up and then they got buried. I'm glad they did. It feels like Christmas!  To celebrate I did a painting from one of the photos I took at Stan's farm back when I bought the pastels. Below is my step by step demo.

My nearly pristine set of Terry Ludwig 'Stan Sperlak' pastels




  1. (from top left)  I am using white Wallis paper. I will be doing a turpenoid wash underpainting. I start by putting down a layer of hard pastels.
  2. I brush in the pastel with turpenoid. I use an old stiff bristle brush. You can see the drips at the bottom.
  3. This stage shows the finished underpainting. I like how the turpenoid liquifies the pastel and creates interesting drips and webs.
  4. When the underpainting dries I start by putting in the darks. I am using only the Stan Sperlak TL pastels.
  5. In this step I put in the lights. I put in some pale peach and yellows to the sky and I start to put in some lights in the field.
  6. Now I refine the treeline putting in skyholes. I add some more color to the field including some of the blues in the shadow areas.
  7. I continue to refine and add details to the grasses.
  8. Now it is time to put in the sunlit weeds. Thais is what I loved about this scene....I was packing up when I saw the light on these weedy things....the magical light turned weeds into things of beauty.
  9. I put in a few more punctuation marks (some more red spots) and call it done!
Now that I am finally organized I will not be losing this set again. By the way, I highly recommend a workshop with Stan Sperlak. You can read my review in this post HERE.  Stan will also be doing a demo at the 2013 IAPS convention that you won't want to miss!

4 comments:

jackie simmonds said...

this is a lovely fresh and vibrant image, Karen, beautiful. I love the way it hovers between abstract marks, and understandable visual imagery.
Fab.

Karen said...

Thank you Jackie! I really appreciate your comments! I respect your opinion greatly.Thank you!

Sherry Schmidt said...

Love this Karen! Thanks for the interesting step by step even tho I won't be trying pastels!

John Andrews said...

Very nice result! Thanks for the progress pics.