|'Ever Changing' 13x18 pastel ©Karen Margulis|
I think it is about the challenge for me. It isn't the cost of paper that keeps me from throwing out these quick demos I did for school children. They are on Canson Mi-Teintes which I purchased in bulk. It must be the challenge of taking something awful and transforming it into something completely different. I think I like it better than starting on a fresh surface.
I have three more of these demos. You can see last week's transformation here. This week I decided to turn the demo painting into a golden autumn marsh. I describe how I did it below.
|The demo. The kids wanted a tree, water, a bird and purple flowers!|
The paper is brown Canson Mi-Teintes smooth side. The first thing I do is brush off as much pastel as possible. I don't mind if there was a ghost image remaining. I just want to restore some tooth. I then spray the paper with workable fixative to fix the ghost layer.
Next I draw a new horizon line and block in all of the dark areas of the marsh. I use a few dark purple pastels. The dark areas were along the edges of the creek at the base of the grasses. I try some rusts, yellows and greens just to test the colors. I also add more blue to the sky. I need to cover the dark shape that was the tree so I use a Diane Townsend pastel. Since the pastel has pumice it is a great match for the Canson paper. A few passes of blue and the tree was gone!
I finish the sky with a touch of pale peach at the horizon and paint the water with the same pastels that I used in the sky. I start to add some violets in the grasses. I want the violets to play with the yellows that will be added. At this stage I can't see any remnants of the older demo painting.
I paint the distant land with some cool blues and violets. I start to build the grasses by starting with some intense oranges and red-orange. The grasses will be golden yellows but there needs to be variety in the color so I start darker and richer. I use bigger and bolder marks for this step. I don;t paint individual blades of grass until the final few minutes.
Next I add some yellows and yellow greens to the grasses starting to paint individual grasses with the edge of hard pastels. The final marks I make are the distant buildings. They are just tiny marks. Click the photo to enlarge and see the details.
That was another fun transformation! I think I realize why I like these challenges. I like them because I can't possibly make the painting worse than it was! That takes the pressure off and makes it fun! Try it!