Newspaper Article

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by a local newspaper looking to do an article on me and my art.  The writer left me a message on my phone and also sent me an email. I was typing up my email to respond to her (thinking out my answers so I wouldn’t have to worry about how many times I said “ummm” and “you know”). My plan was to call her back and use my draft email as notes (doesn’t everyone do that?). But before I could finish, she calls me again. And wants to come by my studio NOW.

If you like my facebook art page, you might have seen a post saying I was rearranging my studio just the night before. Do you know how organized artists typically are? Can you imagine what my studio looked like the day the reporter wanted to come over? Most of my art was still hanging at the Roasted Coffee Depot in Graham, so I had limited inventory in my studio as well.

After she explained she only needed to take a picture of me and could crop out everything else…I said “OK, come on over.” I’d love to say I was completely ready for someone to come over, but my studio and I were far from it. After frantically getting presentable, I stuffed all the junk in cabinets quickly reorganized my art supplies before she arrived. (I really need to start following flylady more…CHAOS!)

I don’t remember saying ALL of this and in those EXACT words, but it’s consistent with what I have on my website and SOUND like something I would have said.  In case anyone familiar with the two pieces on the second page catches these errors, the “Woolly Malamute” and “Lesser Kudu” (it does have a title) are pastel, not colored pencil.

All in all, it was a good experience! Anyone interested in doing a follow up article, I can now say my studio is back in one piece and my paintings have returned from the coffee shop.

Alamance News

Alamance News page 1

Alamance News page 2

Alamance News page 2

New Pastel Painting: Alaskan Malamute

So the original post disappeared shortly after it was highlighted on another webpage. Sorry it’s taken a few weeks for me to get the energy to piece it back together. (Very strange and since I don’t know WHY it happened, or even know HOW to find out why, I’m just going to add the photos back and go from there).

The beginning didn’t start out the way I wanted and I quickly discovered that my sketch wasn’t right. I remedied that by covering the entire panel in charcoal and then bringing out the lighter pieces with a kneaded eraser. At this stage, it’s pretty loose and messy looking.

Beginning stage using vine charcoal and a kneaded eraser

Now I’m adding more detail now that I’m satisfied with the placement, but still using just charcoal and eraser. (There might be a little bit of pastel on the right ear).

Refining the detail

It becomes more obvious that I’m adding color now, mainly a soft blue – both to the background and to the fur.

Next step, adding pastels over the charcoal

Adding a second color, mostly a peach color to the fur, to play with the warm and cool sections. Blurring your eyes on the photo helps pick out different colors. I also take a piece of paper with a hole in it and hold it over the photo to identify colors. It’s amazing what you see there that your eye didn’t pick up before.

Adding peach

Getting into the nitty-gritty of the painting, playing with the colors and adding more local color to the nose and eyes.

Playing with the peach and blue. Also added some pink to the nose and orange to the eyes.

Is this like watching paint dry? I can’t help but take tons of photos. I’m adding more black, darkening sections of the fur. I’ve also refined the nose a little more.

Darkening the fur and softening the nose

The final step…you can see that I’ve softened the fur a little. One of my favorite spots is under his chin. It’s really soft there, almost as if he’s shedding and you can gently pull the hair right out. (Does anyone else love to do that? I could do that to these long-haired dogs for HOURS!)

“Wooly Malamute” | 16×20 | pastel