Friday, March 26, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Monday, March 22, 2010

Gold Leaf

Upon completing last week's leaf painting I had another vision for the piece. Where the previous painting used metallic powder pigments more subtly sprinkled on certain leaves, I wanted to experiment with gold leaf in a more solid approach. 

After preparing my panel with 2 coats of pastel primer, I lightly blocked in the leave shapes with charcoal to place them within the composition. I then applied a loose warm wash of watercolor to establish the background color and some values.

Once this dried I began the process of applying gold leaf. I first painted the large leaf section across the bottom with gold leaf adhesive size. Once dry to tacky, I carefully applied the delicate 22 karat gold leaf. 

Once this was completely dry, I gently brushed away the excess leaf leaving the fairly solid

I then began working over the rest of the piece with my pastels.

After several layers to bring the leaves to the color and texture I wanted, Gold Leaf is finished.
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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Amid the Clouds

This photo was taken on a beautiful day last fall while attending a football game at Maine Maritime Academy. I'm sure I watched the surrounding views more than the game!
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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Beyond Browns

My friend Bruce creates beautiful works of art with his camera. Sometimes, when I just can't resist, he graciously agrees to let me interpret his photos with my pastels. I was inspired by this image of oak leaves near his home.
I had an idea for what I wanted to achieve involving a multiple step process. After coating the back of my acid free mat board with gesso, I applied 2 coats of white Art Spectrum Pastel Primer to the front surface in big loose brush strokes. This gave  me the tooth I needed to accept layers of pastel.
 I then applied a warm watercolor wash. I kept the strokes random and ended by splashing the surface to get even more texture. When this was dry, I began 'carving' out the leaves with my pastels. After completing the pastel painting, now it was time to create the metallic effect I had in mind. I masked out all but the top right leaf and lightly sprayed it with a fine mist of water. I immediately sprinkled bronze metallic powder pigment there. After drying naturally, I masked all but the large leaf across the bottom. This I lightly sprayed and sprinkled with a touch of gold metallic powder. I'm pleased to say this painting is just what I envisioned since first seeing Bruce's image.

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Monday, March 8, 2010