Saturday, September 28, 2013

Wrong start...

I decided to start over. I can't explain why. The feeling changed when working on the first attempt from excitement to "something is wrong" "this doesn't feel right" "I need to start over". I don't like to start over. Working in colored pencil is time consuming, not to mention all the pencils wasted. But here it is.

Prismacolor Premiers,
 8x20 on Stonehenge Paper

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Colored Pencil - a medium to be taken seriously

When it comes to colored pencil, some artists refer to their work as drawings others call them colored pencil paintings. Many techniques make up the range of colored pencil work, some do look more like  drawings, while others resemble oil or water color paintings. Then there is the question of light fastness. If you are serious about your colored pencil art, you pay attention to that too. But as with any other medium, you wouldn't want to hang your oil or watercolor by a famous painter in direct sunlight now, would you? So why would you do it with colored pencil? The question is how serious do we take colored pencil work.  If you go to the website of the Colored Pencil Society of America (CPSA), you will see that CP work is something to be taken very seriously.

It is a shame though that when it comes to general art exhibits or juried shows, the category of "Graphics" is a collection of anything that's not oil, water media (watercolor and/or acrylics), pastels or photography. Yes, there are others but those are the main ones. Colored pencil work always falls into the graphics category since it is considered a drawing, no matter how much your work looks like a painting. And that's were the problem lies. Most artists, at least in this area of the country were I live, work in oil, water color, acrylics or pastels (considered the "serious" media in the art world). In most shows you have to have a certain number of works for the category to be considered, judged and hung in the show. Just recently I submitted a work and because there were not enough entries in the "Graphics" category, the work would not have been considered for judging and possibly winning a prize. So I pulled my entry out of the show.

I am not saying that I believe my work is so excellent it would have one a prize, that's not the point.  I am wondering why there are not more artists working in pencil, charcoal, pen and ink, in other words, media that could fall into the graphics category???

The Next Challenge

I have always wanted to draw skies and cloud formations. For years now I have been taking pictures of the sky at dawn, at sunset, before a storm, after a storm…. whenever I see interesting clouds or vivid color contrasts. I recently completed a small image that was the inspiration for going larger and here it is my current work in progress:

Prismacolor Premiers,
 8x20 on Stonehenge Paper

I don't have a name for it yet, but the hours around sunset are my favorite time of day, so until I can come up with something different, the working title is "My Favorite Time of Day".


Here it is, almost finished. I had several reasons for wanting to work on this. I liked the bright lights and shadows, that's always what catches my attention first. Then the perspective of "being" among the blossoms, looking up slightly. I also was drawn to the contrast of the reddish background and the pink flowers, after I saw the digital image on my camera. And finally, because I don't usually like the color pink, at least not the washed out "baby blanket" pinks, or the Bepto pinks, I had to prove to myself that I can work with shades of pink. Also as far as hardness of colored pencils goes, pink is a very soft and creamy consistency and those pencils often give me problems. Yellow is another color like that. I feel they have to be applied sparingly and in many layers to achieve the result I want to see. Those were my reasons for going outside of my comfort zone with PINK :)

Below is the finished product! I named it "Tiptoed through the Tulips". Prismacolor Premier and Derwent Colorsoft on white Mi-teintes Paper. Approx 8x10