Saturday, February 28, 2009

Artwork in Progress

I thought it would be fun to show you my latest colored pencil painting as a work in progress. The photo I'm using as a reference is one I took in July 2004. It's the side of Pepe's Dancing Lobster (I think that's the name of the place, anyway), a lobster shack on Fisherman's Wharf in Provincetown, Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

This painting is full of "firsts" for me. My normal inclination would be to enlarge the photo to whatever finished size I wanted and then trace the outlines. I decided that for this one, I would try sketching the composition myself using the grid method. It worked pretty well, I think, but you can see in the side-by-side comparison that my symmetry is off. After much debate, I decided to leave the imperfections and see how they affect the final piece. Will it look more like a painting this way or just a bad copy of a photo? We'll see.

Another first is that this is my very first attempt at working a painting from one of my kit with color mixing and technique instructions. Very scary at first, but so far it's been really, really fun! I do have my teacher helping me, but since she hasn't painted the piece herself, we're both kind of feeling our way through this. (BTW, my teacher is Lynda Montefusco, and she is wonderful.) I really thought the worn paint on the buoys would be a real challenge to render in pencil, but it hasn't turned out that way. Where I have cracks and scratches, I first impress the details with a Prismacolor Verithin pencil. I can then color over the details with the softer Premier pencils without losing them. To get the smooth look of paint, I've been blending colors with odorless mineral spirits. The one thing I'm still not happy with is the white. I've got some Prismacolor Lightfast white pencils on order and, hopefully, they will be more opaque.

So there you have it. Now you know how I've been spending my Thursday evenings. I'll post progress photos periodically so you can follow along if you'd like.

Oh yeah...and I'll post a new card a bit later on.

Enjoy your day!


  1. Now this is really really interesting!! Thanks for sharing with us. You're doing great!

  2. With your talent, there is no doubt that you painting will be absolutely beautiful!


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