|'Summer Perfection' 16x10 ©Karen Margulis|
The Big Summer Cleanup begins today. My studio has been sadly neglected. It has been a busy year so far and things have gotten out of control. I have paper and pastels and supplies spread out everywhere and I need to get it organized.
I started moving things around this morning and found a nice textured board that I made and never used. It was an odd size 16x10 but I knew it would be perfect for a painting I had in mind.
The Great Cleanup quickly came to a halt so that I could paint while the inspiration was fresh. That's OK. I'll start cleaning in the afternoon.
|The first layer with the distracting white bits|
The surface I found is a piece of mat board that I covered with a mixture of gesso and powdered pumice with a little bit of water to make the concoction the consistency of cream of wheat. I spread it on with a cheap brush. I enjoy using random brushstrokes. I love working on a textured surface but sometimes the texture is challenging to work with.
You can see in the photo above that the pastel skips over the grooves created by the pumice mixture brushstrokes. The white board is showing all over and that bothers me. I could just keep layering pastels and eventually the white would get covered. But I risk making mud. So instead I RUB in the first layer.
|The first layers rubbed in and ready for more pastel|
I used a piece of pipe insulation foam to push the first layer of pastel into the grooves of the board. In the photos above you can see the difference the rubbed in layer makes. No more distracting white or light paper spots. My texture what quite rough so I added a second layer of pastel and rubbed it in as well. The next step was to add fresh pastel. I did not do anymore blending or rubbing.
The pastel will still skip over the grooves but now there is color in the grooves. It works especially well in areas of grass. The textured surface gives the illusion of grassiness without the distraction of the light color surface showing. Have a look at the close ups photos below to see the effects of the texture.
If you are working on a very light colored surface with texture it is a good idea to tone it or push the first layer of pastel into the grooves of the texture.