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Monday, August 15, 2016

How to Rescue a Failed Painting: Video Demo

'A Beautiful Tangle'          11x14       pastel      ©Karen Margulis
available $175
Another great question led to my latest Facebook live demo. I was asked for a recommendation for inexpensive sanded pastel paper. The reader was new to pastels and didn't feel like she was good enough for the pricier papers.  I know this is a common concern with artists new to pastels. They often want to wait until they are 'good enough' to use the good stuff.  Let me address this concern.


There is a reason for this. Good quality pastels and paper are a pleasure to work with and results will often be better than a struggle with inexpensive student grade supplies. Even when we are learning and not always having the greatest results the better papers are a better value because they can be REUSED and RECYCLED!

In my latest 'Sunday Studio' video I demonstrate how I recycled a piece of Uart paper. I used rubbing alcohol to turn a bad painting into an underpainting for a new start. If you don't use Facebook or missed the broadcast you can still see the video in it's raw unedited format on my YouTube channel here:

The pastels I used for today's paintings

Before I put away the pastels I used for the demo I decided to recycling another piece of Uart in the same way and paint another version of the wildflower seed heads. I hope you enjoy the video! 

'Another Tangle'       5x7        $75

my reference photo


margot said...

it's been great to watch you work ! and you answered that one of many questions beginners ask .... I was wondering if you've ever tackled the problem of using too many layers of pastels (or pressing too hard) and loosing the tooth of paper ? What to do - is the battle lost then ? I might have not read everything on the blog .... I would appreciate some advice on the topic.

Karen said...

Thank you Margot! I have often filled the tooth of the paper! When this happens I will brush off some of the pastel with s stiff brush and/or spray the area with workable fixative. This works to give me more tooth to work with!

margot said...

Thank you Karen very much ! Then there is this another problem :)) I live in Poland and we have plenty of brands of fixatives but they seem all be the same ... you call yours "working fixative" like it were proper for using in the middle of painting, going on after applying ...... Are there different fixatives for the process and for the finish ? I think I rememeber you saying you're not using fixative for finish (change of colour or something), right ?

Karen said...

Yes there are final fixative and workable fixatives. I use workable so that I can continue to work on the painting. I don't use a final fixative.