|'Here Comes the Sun' 8x10 pastel ©Karen Margulis $75 Etsy Shop|
It has been cold, damp, dark and dreary here in Georgia. I am dreaming of warmth and sunshine. After five days of rain I would like a little heat in the studio. Today I saw my box of Diane Townsend Hot set of pastels on the shelf and thought they would be just the thing to play around with.
I always enjoy doing a red or hot pink underpainting for a landscape filled with green. I looked at this set and all of the wonderful reds and oranges and knew they would make a great underpainting choice. So I went through my pile of photos and found a field of sunflowers. Perfect! Lots of green and a sunny reminder of summer. So how did these pastels perform?
|Underpainting using Diane Townsend Hot Colors pastels|
I chose a paper that I made myself by applying clear gesso on a piece of watercolor paper. I wanted to have some texture and a bit of an irregular surface. I began with a quick sketch of the basics shapes to give me an idea of the composition. I applied several of the Hot pastel colors with the darker oranges in the dark areas and lighter hot pinks in the mountain and sky. I put in some lighter oranges in the areas where I wanted flowers. I then rubbed the pastel into the surface with a piece of pipe foam insulation.
I am left with a nice soft underpainting that will work well with all of the greens and blues I will be using. Not only does using the complements in the underpainting help make the greens and blues more exciting, these intense warm colors add a feeling a warmth and sunshine to the painting.
|Diane Townsend Soft Form Pastel 'Hot' colors|
- They are just the right consistency for covering large areas such as under paintings. I love them for skies! They aren't too hard and they aren't too soft and crumbly.
- They have some pumice in them so are a bit gritty. I love the feel of this though and the scratchy sound they make on the paper. This does help them cover the paper and will even open up the tooth of a non sanded paper to make layering easier.
- I am a big fan of the light values. They are my 'go to' pastels for sans and clouds but I really enjoyed using the Hot colors. They are richly pigmented and include some unusual colors such as the fluorescent pinks and oranges. I have an idea for another painting with these yummy colors!
If you think you might like to give these pastels a try, Dakota Pastels has them on sale! http://www.dakotapastels.com/pages/softpastels-townsendsoft.aspx