Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Hey, Jo ... Where'da Ya Go...?

In case you're wondering where I am -- and you probably aren't -- I am working on a little oil pastel drawing. It's experimental at this point, and it's very slow-going because I am a bit of a fuss-budget and I work slowly and methodically. I promise to show you the finished product -- when it's finished. I love working with oil pastels, because they are such clear, bright, wonderful colors -- translucent, almost. It's so much fun experimenting, and the really fun thing about pastels is that you can use any material -- wood, cloth, sandpaper, paper, canvas, even cement. You can put the colors down and then blend them using a torchon, which is a stick of paper that is tightly rolled or compressed, with a pointy end. You can wet them and use washes of color. You can crosshatch layers of color for a deep, rich effect.

My goodness, will you listen to me - heh - I almost sound as if I know what I'm doing.

One of the most famous of the Masters to use pastels was Degas. His paintings of dancers, in particular, had slightly blurred edges to make them look as if they were in motion. And did you know that, in the United Kingdom, there is actually a Pastel Society which dictates what qualifies as a pastel. It has to be oil or chalk pastel, charcoal, pencil, conté, sanguine, or any dry media in order to quality as a pastel. Well, phew...! Thank goodness I just happen to own all of those things. The Society was founded in 1989, and Degas was a founding member. All this, just to put some marks on a piece of paper, and make it look like something. I think some folks just might -- perhaps -- take themselves too seriously.

Anyway ... back to the drawing board, as they say. See you soon...

19 comments:

JR's Thumbprints said...

I'm afraid I'd get chalk dust all over myself and would much rather prefer painting like Pollock: a cocktail in one hand and a container of dripping paint in the other.

JoMo said...

Wow, sounds like fun! I can't wait to see what you come up with...enjoy the process!

Cloudia said...

I like what I see, Jo!



Aloha, Friend


Comfort Spiral

Firefly said...

I'm looking forward to see the finished product.

the walking man said...

have fun...better yet be fun while you paint

Bagman and Butler said...

Ooh oooh! Yes, we want to see it! I also love your description of the process. And I suspect that you sound like you know what you are doing because you really do know what you're doing. I adore artists. I guess that is obvious by now.

Alissa said...

I can't wait to see it. Have fun!

Bailey said...

I'm not very artistic, but I like being artsy. Once my class is over (IN TWO WEEKS!) I may need to pick up some pastels. I've used them a bit before and liked it.


Enjoy :)

heartinsanfrancisco said...

I love pastels but never knew there was a Pastel Society. I always learn something when I come here besides enjoying your delightful writing and the wonderful paintings you display.

Please be sure to post the results of your new oeuvre when it's done!

Land of shimp said...

I'm a big fan of Degas also, Jo.

I very much look forward to seeing the fruits of your creative labors :-) May the muse be with you!

Alicia said...

Good luck Jo! Can't wait to see the finished product. I so envy your talent :-)

Kathy's Klothesline said...

I was wondering what you were up to! I will wait patiently to see...

Thank you so much for what you wrote on my post about my son. The kindness of others has been like balm on my wounds.

Some Girl said...

I LOVE Degas. I think he's just brilliant. His work is beautiful

Marguerite said...

I love working withoil pastels, too, but I do mostly acrylics. Have fun! I can't wait to see the masterpiece!

Nancy said...

Wow, who knew pastels were so intricate?

Good luck on the painting - can't wait to see it!

Tom Bailey said...

I love the art work that you have on your blog. I also enjoyed the Degas information I felt like it was my small art history lesson for the day.

I have never worked with these things like chalk... I have been more of a pen person for a variety of reasons.

Best regards,
Tom Bailey

Donnetta Lee said...

Main thing is to enjoy your creative side. Mama worked mainly in oils and also some watercolors. I love the look of watercolors. She bought me a pastel set (cheapy version) when I was a kid, and I had so much fun with them. Now-I wouldn't know where to begin! Enjoy your creative spree! D

cat said...

I love Degas. I don't know if I made this up or if I learned this in my french class in high school years ago, but lots of Degas' early paintings are very crisp and as you move towards the end of his life, they take on that blurry effect that he is so well known for, and the theory is that he was slowly going blind and thats what accounts for the change in his work.

I have loved all of the artwork you've posted of your own. You have talent. :)

Paula Slade said...

Looking forward to seeing your picture! :)