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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Demo at the Sierra Pastel Society meeting by Kim Lordier

It was held on April 16, 2011 at the Senior Center in the El Dorado hills, 990 Lassen Ln. I really wanted to go, and had marked my calendar early this winter so as not to miss it!  Imagine, getting to meet one of my absolute favorite pastel artists, and watching her do a demo!!  I planed to take my sister, and take her out to lunch, and just have a fun day.  Maybe she would see just why I love pastel so much!   Then I had a brain-storm, and called my plein-air buddy, Carole, from Dayton, whom I met from the Wet Canvas web-site to join us!  I didn't have to ask twice, she is always ready for a pastel adventure.  My sister was great, and did all the driving, I bought the gas and the lunch.  We found a great little spot in Placerville called "Z-Pie"   which is a little restaurant that serves gourmet pot pies!  We were in and out of there in no time, and just 20 minutes or so from the Demo center. 
                As we drove into the parking area at the Senior Center, Kim was going out the back door to her truck and we got to met her right then!!! She is so gracious, pleasant, warm, and genuine.  Really a nice gal.  I was so happy to see that in her, and it goes well with her artwork.  She also seems to be a bit shy, but very personable, good speaker, and so polite!   We sat with the Sierra pastel society members, and really enjoyed a great demo.
    She told how she comes up with an idea, weather she plans to use photographs to plan a comp, or if she is out doing plein-air. She says while is always about the light- -light as it touches things or places, its also about a "mood"  So, using composition, and color, she tries to capture a certain light , and mood in her work.   She begins with a Notan Drawing, and after figuring out which one she will use in her sketchbook, she then draws that notan  right onto her pastel support.  Of course many hands went up, and folks were asking" what do you use to draw your notan with" - -and " Do you always use a sanded paper?"  and the normal materials- used sort of questions.  Kim answered all so very clear and politely, so easy to understand.   I will post the few pictures I took while there.  I was so busy listening and watching , plus my good camera is being repaired, so I only took a few.
Here, she is beginning to draw out her notan,, using the #244 Nupastel, which is a dark blue-violet.  She also said she mostly uses the Wallis Belgium Mist paper, and has it dry-mounted to foam-cor by her framer. She really was not happy about turning her back to do her work, but that could not be helped. She is so polite!This shot depicts her Notan, after she has used turpentine and a Bristol brush to wash the pastel, and she used graceful large strokes in order to capture the gesture of the tree and the landscape.  The flash is on in my camera, and so the wetness reflected back and it looks shiny. She did get 4 values in this value-map notan, counting the color and value of the paper.  Even the notan was beautiful, and you could tell easily how the picture would finnish!
Here is the first blocking  in of the painting, going all over the picture, and thinking of value all the time.  She talked about how she works, folks wanted to know how she thinks as she works, how she makes choices in both color, and value and her strokes. She was so interesting to listen to. you could tell when she got quiet she was into her painting and thinking about it, not all us people!  So that also helped us understand that when we are in deep thought, doing the work, our minds even get quiet, and intuitive- -  -no chatter! We have shifted over to the left-brain!  Watching the painting take place, and the light begin to come thru was great.
This above picture is where she left things.  You sure could see the light coming thru, and she said there were a couple of things she needed to think about, and maybe change.  She talked about line, shape, mass, value and the importance of doing your notan.  The sky , while having a lot of light, was not resolved. She wasn't sure yet about that. There was a couple of triangle shapes she needed to resolve as well, and as time was running out this was a good place to take questions and talk about what she had done.   It was great to listen to a artist talk about the struggles of painting, and the joy of painting, too.
This is the last shot I took, she is talking about value-choices and other interesting things. I really enjoyed the day. Carole had a great time and met Urania Christy Talbolt as well!!  We all did, she is so nice.  Carole is the Sister to the BestBrella lady, and so sold one to Urania!  So she had a good day, too.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The last of Thornburg Peak

Last painting of Thornburg Peak
This is the final painting I have done for the Alpine County Garden Club.  They plan to give this as a gift to a lady whom is getting married, Lives in the Bay area, and had grown up here nearly under this peak.  Her last name is also Thornburg, as her family are old timers in the area.  I really hope she enjoys this painting, for me , it was a great project and oppertunity,.    It is on Moonstone Canson paper, and is 18 x 22, and was choosen out of 3 paintings I compeleted on different surfaces.  I was lucky, and got to take it to my framer and chose the matting and frame.  Not knowing where it will hang, I hope it all turns out!  This really was a nice experiance for me, and not at all expected!

third painting--grey day.

Friday, April 8, 2011

New work, just finished today

As I said on my last post, I have been working on a new project.  Today, after finishing my first attempt at this, I have decided to do another one , with a horizontal format- -  -and on a grey-day.  Today I found even tho I had gone and done a Plein-air one morning that I had problems with how to Finnish!   I know trees are not as easy as they seem, and I wonder why??  I have read so much on this, Carlson. Payne, Purcell. Garcia,  and I just love Darcie Peet's landscape paintings!!  She doesn't have any problems with her trees!  Just wonderful work on her web-site, she is one of the best.   Aspevig work is supreme, they make it look so easy and wonderful.   My plein-air was for "fact-finding"- - - color, space. and feeling.   I didn't get it exactly right, but I will show you how it turned out.
The peak is way more dramatic , I drew it a bit more rounded than It is.  I believe the wind was kicking up---and I was more concerned on where it all sat in space.   Its really an unfinished little 9 x 12 on pastelmat , but I think it helped me alot.   So here is where I am today - - -  - - with another version already on my mind.
I am sorta pleased - - - but not quite.   It was fun to do,  I did use the grey pastelbord, 16 x 20----very nice to work on, with a cobalt blue underpainting.    I think I would call it:  Spring in the Sierra.----but that's a bit corny!   Now I am excited to do the next one!    I got an email from the lady who asked me to do it, she invited me to a luncheon meeting with the Garden Club ladies that are giving this painting  as a gift- - - and says to bring it!  Good Grief!   I sure hope the next one is better!!!!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Thinking- - -

This is a photo I took today while out trying to paint this en plein-air.   I did manage a 9 x 12 painting----- and do feel it will help me as I try to plan for a much larger piece.   Problems arise, and questions need to be answered however.   I plan to paint a version of this about 16 x 20 on a Ampersand grey pastel bord have spent  about 2 hours this morning looking, and painting and seeing it for today's light.  The wind came up, supposed to really blow today, but I got picked up easily.  I am wanting to show its size- - - - and where it sits in our Alpine County landscape.  I needed to know for myself!   You see, this is a piece that a local group wants painted to give as a wedding gift for a young woman who grew up here, but now lives in The San Fransisco area, and is getting married soon.   Nice Idea, I know- - - now if I can manage it!    I have been up here several times to get a feel for it, taken photos' and done drawings in pencil and charcoal.    I have seen it on cloudy days and sunny days, in snow, and with spring trying to show itself.   I am amazed at how large these bluffs are!!   This sits very near Raymond Peak, which is a little over 10 thousand feet- - -I am sure this is very close , and its known as Thornburg Peak for a well know family with roots going back to the 1800's, and the lady who is marring is from this family.   No pressure here!!
Another thing I was thinking is:   Remember those Webinar things I spoke about in December?  The artist from Canada, Vloothuis, was giving amazing lectures, or talks about art thru the program, GoTo  now he Has been doing them , a full course, so to speak, thru the WetCanvas website.  Its with the F&W media group that puts out the Artist Magazine, and Southwest Art.  Lessons are now available for download for a small fee.  You need to go to WetCanvasLive to be able to partisipate.  I have been re-studying the handouts he has given about Mountains to see if they will help me with this new project of mine!!  I need help , and its in the thinking stage, the thumbnail stage, and value-map stages that any help will work.Later!