Daily Sketch: Mewsette as a Rainy Spring DayPosted: March 12, 2012
Something about the light today and Mewsette with her calm quiet look, back to the window, watching me, I got out the oil pastels for the colors, then started experimenting.
I remember years ago with a weekend part-time job in an art and framing store—after a week of being a typesetter it was a joy with the added benefit of huge discounts on materials and meeting lots of local artists who came in to have their work framed. I was just beginning as an artist, had produced my first four cat paintings an decided I needed to look into this. What I learned form being there was invaluable.
A young man came in one day with a long narrow painting of a farm with a big sky done in oil pastel, totally foreign to me at that time. I worked up his estimate and studied his painting to see how he’d applied and blended the pastels, and saw that he not only had layers and blends of pastel, but in some areas he’d actually scratched away pastel for effect. What I was as a rail fence was actually where he had used a fork to scrape away the oil pastel for the highlights on the fence rails.
That memory never left me and years later I’ve been working in oil pastel now and then to develop a familiarity with it. Here I’ve applied many colors, rubbed them into the canvas paper, scraped others off and layered another color in its place, then used what was handy as a scraper, the edge of the cap of a pen, to scrape away the pastel in the shape I wanted.
I had intended something else entirely, but what’s here is fine. I did another painting of Mewsette in oil pastel a while ago, Mewsette in Blues and Greens.
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Read about the reason for the daily sketches in The Artist’s Life: Daily Sketches.
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