A few days ago I did a mini painting of Mirror Lake from a photo my son had taken about ten years ago – Learning So Much From So Little. Today I wanted to try doing the same scene only a bit bigger. This one is 5 x 7 inches done in pastel pencil on Strathmore Colored Pencil paper. I wanted to try the colored pencil paper not only to check out the surface with pastels, but I have a ton of it. I’m very pleased with the results. I hope you like it, too!
I wanted to share my mini for today with you. I actually ended up doing two of the same scene as I thought of something I wanted to try once I had finished the first one. Here they both are. Let me know which one you like best, the one with four wires on the fence or the one with three (and that’s not the only difference between the two).
So you might be wondering why I’ve begun focusing on mini paintings (2.5 x 3.5 inches). There are several reasons, one of which is the fact that my husband has asked me to make him lots and lots of mini paintings that he can put up on one of the walls in his computer room. Who am I to say no to a man that’s put up with me for over 33 years? These minis are also a great way to be able to complete a painting in a short amount of time.
Now, my husband like barns and yesterday he asked me to paint another one for him. I had my heart set on something else, but went ahead and worked on his barn. I don’t mind telling you that I wasn’t happy and I was just sure that it was going to turn out lousy. Well, I was wrong! I don’t know why I talk myself into places of frustration and anxiety, but I had. Fortunately it didn’t take long for me to see that things were going swimmingly. I actually enjoyed doing this painting very much!
For this mini I used Pastelmat and PITT pastel pencils. The Pastelmat allows for a very smooth application and the ability to layer quite a bit of material on to the surface. I was quite pleased with the finished product – and so was my husband!
Another day, another mini. This one is also done in pastel pencil on Fabriano Tiziano paper. One thing that I’m learning from my mini experiments is that while I usually enjoy the texture and patterning that even the backside of this paper brings to a larger piece, when I scale things way down I’m just not feelin’ the love. In this piece I purposely didn’t smudge or blend much at all in order to try to simulate the light peeking through the trees. Unfortunately the final effect wasn’t exactly what I had hoped for and looks much rougher than expected. Well, at least I’m learning! I’m also learning how to better blend my pastels to bring richer colors to the party. And now, without further ado, here is my latest mini, Mirror Lake.
Well, as you know I’ve been trying to be more consistent with my art. In fact I’m trying to do at least some painting every day. (Yes, I consider using pastels painting.) Yesterday I embarked on a new direction with my art – mini paintings. Now I’ve done paintings as small as 4×6 inches before, but these mini paintings are only 3.5×2.5 inches. Now that’s mini! I actually did two of them yesterday and had tons of fun. I’m quickly appreciating the mini canvas for it’s ability to allow me to create and experiment while at the same time limiting my space. Just as a blank page can bring about writer’s block for an author (and I know because I’ve been there), the blank canvas can freeze an artist in their tracks. But these tiny pieces of paper are so, well, tiny, they aren’t intimidating in the least. Here’s to the mini! And here are my first two, both in pastels!
I’m still trying to do some art every day, and so far so good! Yesterday, rather than start a new, smaller painting I took a painting I had done a couple weeks ago (and was not happy with in the least) and transformed it. I started by turning it into an underpainting. I blocked in the colors I wanted and then painted over it with rubbing alcohol. I just love doing that. Today I went back downstairs and tried my hand at impressionism. Not only did I transform the painting, but the painting transformed me.
Monet is my favorite artist. I’ve always loved his style and his eye for color and light. Until now it’s been a challenge for me to let go of trying to recreate exactly what I see and paint what I feel instead. This is my first step. I’m actually quite pleased with how it turned out considering what it looked like before I gave it a second chance. I purposely chose a time when I didn’t have a lot of time to paint so that I’d have to keep my painting fast and loose. I’m really glad that I did because I’m feeling a little bit more confident to give this impressionism another shot tomorrow.
I’ve written before that art is an excellent therapy. When you’re involved in creating you can express yourself and work through garbage that could be very difficult to express in words. You can take something ugly and use that ugly to create something beautiful, all while taking a step or two toward healing. There’s no right or wrong with art. It doesn’t judge you. It simply is. All you need is a pencil or pen and some paper and you’re good to go. If you’re lucky and have little ones in the house borrow their crayons and go to town. I think you’ll be glad you did.
Now, I need to find a good reference photo for tomorrow’s painting. Here’s hoping I can stay on track!
Life in a family that has two Aspies in it (I’m one of them) can be interesting at best. I don’t even want to talk about the “at worst” scenarios. Suffice it to say that there are times when try as I might, no matter how much I want things to go smoothly they don’t. This means that sometimes my passions, like art, music, and writing, get set aside for a time because, well, life.
A few days ago I decided to make it a point to do some art every day. Nothing big, but something. I’d like to share my work from day one and day two, both done in colored pencil, both 5×7. Today being day three, and it being the time of day that it is, I’m a little worried that my streak might end at two days. Unless I try a mini drawing. That just might be the ticket today!
I’m already finding that I’m becoming much more confident with colored pencils. When I first started out with them my drawings tended to look like a kindergartner went haywire with crayons, but not any more. I’m also trying to find my way to make my drawings look the way I want them to look rather than trying to copy other artists techniques and outcomes.
Anyway, here are my first two dailies. I hope you enjoy them!