|'Island Memories' 12 x 24 pastel ©Karen Margulis|
Sometimes it is a profound message that changes the way you work. Sometimes it is just a simple but practical tip. Over the years I have had the good fortune to have studied with many of the masters of pastel.....my rock stars! Each of these artists have had an influence on my work. I have taken bits and pieces of their teachings and advice and with a lot of painting on my part I have incorporated them into my own vision.
Today I took out another older painting that I had put aside. It needed a little something and now I knew just what to do to finish it. As I made the changes I realized that I had grown since I had first painted this picture. I was making changes that were based on things I have learned from my teachers. I'd like to share those lessons with you today.
|Before the changes....this painting is probably 6 years old|
The first change I made was just a small adjustment but it reminded me of an important lesson taught by Richard McKinley.....the importance of working INCREMENTALLY. Instead of jumping into a painting and making drastic changes to a painting, it is better to to make small and thoughtful changes. I tend to paint very fast but I have learned to slow down when resolving a painting. I have learned to take my time and make thoughtful changes.....every mark needs to have a purpose when I am making final marks.
In looking at this painting I felt that it had no spice or eye candy in the dark ground plane. I had added a flash of peach water and some brighter green but it wasn't quite enough. So I took out a soft bright peach pastel and made a line to indicate water. I also added some heavier marks on the sky.
But the peach mark was too thick! I needed to fix it. That is where my second lesson came in. This one was more of a practical tip I learned about from Stan Sperlak. He has a tip for making small corrections to a painting. You could say they are incremental corrections! Read on to see the trick.
|Here is the too thick line of water|
|Using a pin to make small corrections|
If you want to make small changes it is very simple to remove pastel by scraping it off with the pin. I dragged the pin along the peach line removing the areas that were too thick. I was able to preserve the surrounding area which I liked. A brush would have removed more pastel than I needed. The pin allowed for more precision and more thoughtful corrections!
|The corrected area with the addition of some green spice|