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Friday, May 13, 2016

A Quick Tip for Painting the Surf

'Sound of the Surf'        12x12
I can taste the salt.  The breeze is kicking up the surf and the foam is flying. I could stand at the edge of the sea all day and watch the waves roll in.  The sound of the crashing surf mingles with the call of the gulls. I smell the salty air and feel the spray on my face.  It makes me feel alive!

Now how do we capture all of this in a painting of the waves?  How can we create the spray with pastels?  If we try to paint it with pastel sticks the spray is too dense. If we try to use pastel pencils our spray may be too precise. Here is a better way to paint spray.

Make up some wet pastel paste and us a brush to flick it in the painting.

  • All you need to do is shave some light value pastel. I use very light colors...almost white.  Use a spray bottle to wet the shavings until they form a wet pastel...slightly runny.  
  • Now use a stiff brush or old toothbrush, dip it in the paste and hold it over the painting where you want the spray. 
  • Run your finger over the bristles which will spray the paste in little drops onto the painting.
  • If you get too many drops of paste, wait until the drops dry then use your finger to gently tap them away.
  • The wetter the paste, the bigger the droplets.  A stiff pastel will create denser spray.

1 comment:

robertsloan2art said...

WOW! Awesome trick. I remembered your dry method of shaving off crumbs and pressing in with a palette knife, bet these adhere better. Gorgeous results!