Gallery: Art Connections Gallery 123 N. Main Street on the Square in La Grange, Texas.
979-206-2222 http://www.artconnectionsgallery.com/

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Saturday, June 07, 2008

Cosmos in Colored Pencil

Colored pencil, to persist or not?

Colored pencil pieces move along very slow in normal use. The artist needs to layer and layer with a light touch to begin. On paper the artist can mark the paper by pressing too hard and leave an indentation. For some artists this layering is attune to coloring and is very relaxing and soothing. Colored pencil can be erased but the paper is easily damaged. Colored pencil artists get fine detail and beautiful colors. Colored pencil paintings/drawings are usually matted and framed under glass.

You can determine from this that I have not been eager to do colored pencil. Leslie and Regina both do beautiful work with the pencils and have encouraged me to try. I have not been pleased with my attempts at colored pencil. It may be that I never had good paper or pencils. For me it is labor intensive. With a pastel stick or brush in oils or acrylics I can put down a line and there it is. You can leave it except to blend or add a different color. I am not a patient person. :)

I keep thinking it would be great medium for traveling and I usually have a fistful of pencils with me. I have been reading Nicole Caulfied's blog. She uses Pastelbord for her surface and then sprays/varnishes her work so that it doesn't have to be framed under glass. What a great idea! It is faster to cover the surface as well and you can add highlights easily. Maggie Stiefvater also uses a similar technique in painting.

Mom's Cosmos
Colored Pencil, 5 x 7 inches, Pastelbord

I did these cosmos from a photo taken a few years ago at Gene's mom's house. I have always liked Cosmos and have tried painting them, but they always look heavy. I find it interesting that they have different numbers of petals on different flowers. I could never tell, maybe they are supposed to have eight and some have fallen off. At any rate, I like to watch them in the breeze.

I liked the speed of doing this piece, it only took me a couple of hours to complete. It can be spray varnished and framed with no glass. I am ready to try a landscape, now. What do you think about it?? Yes or no??


Rose Welty said...

Jo, the cosmos are lovely. They are "heavy" enough that they seem to be there, but they are light and airy like the real thing. The background is great. I don't know how you did this so fast - on pastelbord! I think you are a natural - it really looks like pastels.

I'm jealous frankly, but I still love ya! Really, they are lovely.

"JeanneG" said...

Yes, yes, yes.

Susan Carlin said...

I hope you will, and then post it for us to see! I love the idea of not having to hide it under glass, too.

Jo Castillo said...

Rose, thank you, thank you. You certainly inspire me, too. You realize I have a few more years of using color than you do. Heh. It is just the patience and technique with pencil that I lack and you seem to have. The Pastelbord seems to fill in quickly compared to paper and you can go over it with lighter colors. So far so good.

Jo Castillo said...

Jeanne, thank you as well. You have experience with pencil/graphite and colored pencil as well.

Jo Castillo said...

Susan, I will spray it in the morning and get Joanna to take a good photo and we will see how it looks then! I'm working on another landscape with church. It will take longer, 8 x 10 inches. See ya.

Rose Welty said...

Jo, you have me on age, but also on talent! ;D

Seriously, you found the pastelbord faster? I didn't think that it covered very fast at all. On paper, a couple of layers and things are starting to sing. Pastelbord was more like five or six layers and I was just beginning to see more than the base color of the board. Interesting!

Jo Castillo said...



Well, on Pastelbord. The first I put the flowers on a green board, so didn't have to really cover it so well. I'm doing the landscape now and looks like the sky will be a little slow on the green board. I'll post a WIP tomorrow.

Joanna said...

Wow. It looks great. 'Looking forward to seeing it in person.

Jo Castillo said...

Hey, Joanna. Thank you, maybe you will see it today!


Nancy Moskovitz said...

Jo, thank you for the new to me info....maybe realized about the pastelbord, but varnishing and no glass is all new. I like the idea.

I have varnished a small pastel on board. Left unframed and sitting on a tiny easel, it sold quickly.

fishing guy said...

Jo: Nicely done, that is a beautiful painting.

Jo Castillo said...

Thanks, fishing guy. Always nice to hear from you.

Regina Calton Burchett said...

This looks great, Jo! I really like them. You don't find it calming to do pencil? It's kind of like meditation, I think. Good job! Can't wait to the the landscape..

Jo Castillo said...

Hi Regina, As yet, I don't find cp calming. It requires patience to go over and over something. Maybe it will grow on me like sketching. Sometimes I actually enjoy sketching and can relax with it. Ha.

Joan said...

This is beautiful!!! I love how you can take something so usual and show its beauty through art!

Jo Castillo said...

Joan, thank you. Don't you think the Scavenger Hunts help with that? We end up looking at all sorts of everyday objects in new ways. I'm going to sketch now, get in one more for the last day of this Hunt.

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About Me

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Bastrop, Texas, United States
I Grew up in a small town , Magdalena, New Mexico. I enjoy art and the pleasure other people get from my work. I always donate some of my sales and art to charities, especially for children. That started in Bolivia with Para los NiƱos. (Link on sidebar) "I cannot pretend to feel impartial about colors. I rejoice with the brilliant ones and am genuinely sorry for the poor browns." -- Winston Churchill


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