Sunday, August 28, 2016

A Tip for Painting on a Textured Surface

'Fall Discovery'              8x10          pastel          ©Karen Margulis
available $145
I almost gave up.  I applied the first few strokes and looked down to see my beautiful pastel was now half of its former glory....in just a few strokes!  I didn't know if I could put myself through the agony and expense!  But I was excited to work on my very heavily textured board so I needed to figure out a solution.

The surface was a piece of Pastelbord from Ampersand. It was an old and very bad painting but the board deserved a new life. For this remake I wanted to try some heavy texture. I knew the pastelbord would be able to take any abuse. I found a container of acrylic ground for pastels by Golden and with a cheap brush I applied the ground right over the painting. The ground liquified the pastel turning it a lovely shade of brown (not). It was a very rough surface!

The first pass with the large Unison pastels

I knew I didn't want to waste my softer pastels on this experiment so I searched through my pastel stash and uncovered a box of pastels that I had labeled 'darks'.  They were dark and quite ugly....black and brown for the most part. Some of them were huge. I recalled getting a set of large unisons on eBay but not liking the colors. Now they were perfect! It really is funny how my perception of 'ugly' has changed over the years.


My box of spare darks

The big fat Unisons were a better match for the surface but I still was not happy. The pastel was sitting on top of all of the grooves. I took a piece of pipe foam and rubbed in the first layer. That was it! The next layers went on top of the grooves but this time there was something underneath.  I just kept building layers in this manner until I was finished.

The texture was definitely an interesting challenge. I highly recommend this kind of surface if you want to get away from painting too much detail. The rough surface does not allow fine detail! I was able to achieve a suggestion of detail though and that was a lot of fun!

building up layers of color
Tip: Start the painting on a rough textured surface with medium to hard pastels and consider rubbing in the first few layers.

1 comment:

Sue Marrazzo said...

AWESOME work!