Saturday, March 30, 2013

Saturday Plein Air - Mingo Park

We had 16 painters today at Mingo Park. I was surprised, being a holiday weekend, that many people would be free. The weather started out frosty, but with no wind and bright sun, it was comfortable at noon for our critique. I decided to paint small and had taped three different shapes onto my board before I left home. This made it quick and easy to decide of a layout once in the field. I used medium gray Pastelmat today.

I setup on the edge of the bike path and faced the sun for the first painting, trying to get the sparkle of the sun on the river, along with the misty effect of the far tree line.

I then turned to my right for the second painting, looking down the river.
I chose not to paint the buildings.
For the last, I turned to my left to paint the pines. I think this one is my favorite. Sometimes I feel I need a warmup painting to get comfortable. This composition fit the square format well.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Saturday Plein Air - Apple Ridge

Today was our 'official' start to the plein air season. We painted at Sharon Woods metro park in the Apple Ridge picnic area. It was cold at about 30 degrees at 9am and the ground was crusty frozen. Soon enough though, the sun warmed us up and the ground got slippery. Six brave souls painted and we had a good time.

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Saturday Plein Air - March 9

First day out for Plein Air 2013! We finally had a nice day today which was cold to start, but with the bright sun, made it a great day to paint. Three of us braved the 35 degree weather and met along the bike path and river near Worthington. We all decided to paint close to the cars and we all decided to paint the same beautiful Sycamore tree. I used the Golden Fine Pumice gel coated paper, which had almost too much texture this time.

 There were still some piles of snow along the path, but by the end of the day, it was up in the fifties and most were melted.

 I'd found a puffy warm coat at Target recently for only $10 on clearance and dedicated it for plein air use today! I actually got too warm near the end of my painting and switched out to a fleece vest.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

More on Black Surface

After I discovered pastel artist Peter R. Davidson, I was intrigued with his use of a black ground. Today, I used one of the surfaces I created yesterday - the one where I added pumice to black gesso. I succeeded in allowing the black to show through. I am happy with this piece. I also need to thank my friend Lyn Asselta for sending me the photo I used as a reference today. All I know it is a view somewhere in Florida!

Process shots shown below:

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Playing with Texture on Black

Spent today in the studio.

Mudflats Fall

I wanted to create a black surface coated with my pumice texture for my pastels. My first idea was to use permanent ink on my surface, then coat it with the texture. I used Rapidiograph ink on one side of a large piece of paper. On the other half, I used Higgins ink. I expected these to be permanent, but once I started applying my texture mix, some inks came up especially on the Rapidiograph side.

While I let that dry, I remembered I had some black gesso, so coated a paper with that which I later coated with the texture mix. Then decided to just add some pumice directly to the black gesso and painted that on another paper. While I had the supplies out, I coated a white paper with clear gesso (which has a sandy texture on its own), and another piece with my mixture. I am trying to develop a recipe for a perfect mix for my work.

Here I shown all the pieces with some pastel marks to be able to see the result of the different texture mixes.

Since I was experimenting, I decided to use the worse piece to do a quick painting (the Rapidiograph side). This looks like a marsh, but it is actually the river at the Galena Mud Flats last fall when the river was way down. I really didn't end up with the black showing much, as I had to work really hard with those places where the ink lifted. It appears that using the piece with the black gesso with added pumice will be the best choice for the next painting.

Process shots of the painting at the beginning of the post follow below.