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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Finding the Illusive Blue Pastel

'Across the Desert'          11x14        pastel       ©Karen Margulis

I have been on a hunt.  Trying to find the perfect blue pastel. I have been looking for what I call 'Distant Mountain Blue'.  That beautiful blue of distant mountain ranges.  I have lots of blue pastels. Lots. But I always think there has to be the perfect 'distant blue' So I keep looking. And trying blues.

Really it isn't something I do for any other color. In fact I never keep track of color names and numbers.  I don't even make color charts with new pastels.  When I get new pastels the first thing I do is take the labels off, break them and put them in my box.  At that point on they become anonymous.

And that is fine with me. Sometimes students will be reluctant to take their new pastels out of their boxes and take off the labels. The big question... How will I replace a color when it is used up?  I don't worry about replacing the exact stick of pastel.  I just try to find one that closely matches the color, value and temperature of the stick I need to replace. And that works for me.

Except when it came to the illusive blue pastel. I wanted the perfect color and if I ever found it I planned to keep the wrapper!  But guess what?  After spending a month in the Southwest looking at those wonderful distant blue mountains and trying to paint them. I realized that one stick of blue can't possibly work for all the variations of blue I saw. It really is necessary to have a few different blues to truly capture the many variations.

So my big blue collection with no names or numbers is really all I need!


Xenoudis - Ξενούδης said...

Excellent inspiration and technique! I am trying to imagine how it would be in oil...
Are your dimensions in cm or inches;

Linda said...

I have the same search going on for the perfect dark dark purple.

Gloria said...

I am loving the way you have the dark semi-outlines on things. It must go back to my coloring days when I was young...I always outlined with black, I guess I like things contained, in their place, defined.

Karen said...

Thanks Gloria! I don't know why I am drawn to the dark outlines...I think because it makes me commit and not be wishy washy!