Canson Watercolor Paper-- Still Haven't Used it for Watercolors!

"Winter Meeting" 12 x 18 Chalk Pastel on Paper
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I tried this subject earlier on a small piece of paper, and between the tiny size of the paper and the bluntness of the pastels (I don't use the pencils too often), there just wasn't enough room. I've always liked this idea though-- birds at sunset in Oceanside, California, on one of those winter days when there are more birds than people on the beach. So, I decided to give it another try with large Canson watercolor paper and "winter" colors, which for me are gold and purple (at least at the beach!)

Instead of trying to realistically copy the photo, I went for a looser approach, and did only a little smearing at the end. I tried to keep the colors in the water broken, with harder edges, and the foreground softer to show the wet sand. There really were boats on the horizon too that day-- some of those winter days are just as warm as summer days, and even more peaceful without the crowds.

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"Rock and Flowers" 12 x 18 Oil & Chalk Pastel on Paper
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For this next piece, I really felt like working loose again, but this time with the freedom of movement that the oil pastels give me. When I use oil pastel, I always prefer to mix it with chalk, because I enjoy the push and pull between the two textures.

This is an image of a large rock and some flowers and bushes at Glen Ivy Hot Springs in California. I used the bright oil pastels for the darks and some of the plants and flowers, and rubbed in chalk for the lighter parts. This piece was a joy to create, because the physical experience of painting was the most important part for me. I enjoyed sliding the oil pastels around on the Canson watercolor paper, which gripped the medium nicely, and scrubbing in the chalk, which the paper also
held without much dust.

I didn't do much smearing on this piece either-- I'm having a lot of fun with raw color these days.

Click here to see more floral inspired art:

Click here to see more experiments with oil and chalk pastel:


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