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

See additional work on my website

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Cactus Blooms Pastel Painting

Painting is something that I like to do quickly.  Usually this works out and I am happy with the results.   If my results are not working I let it sit for a day or more.  There are times when I cannot get the idea rekindled, especially if I let it sit for too long (think days or weeks).  In those cases I wipe it off and start over.  At other times the painting cannot be rescued so I wipe it off and do a completely new painting.  Not all ideas are good paintings.  I consider it practice and don't worry about doing away with concept.

I started a large pastel just before we left for New Mexico.  It was almost finished.  In fact, I thought it was finished but I wasn't thrilled with it.  The painting sat on my studio easel for the summer, waiting for the big wipe off.  When we got back, I looked it over and decided to finish it.  Rare that I can just continue on and be happy with a painting.  I did this time.  The deep saturated colors I use require deep darks to empathize the light.   The painting called out to me and said, "Strengthen the darks!"  That change made all the difference.

Cactus Blooms, Too
Pastel on Pastelbord, 24 x 18 inches - $950
For sale at Art Connections, see info above for their location and contact.

I used some spray bottle drops of water on the background.  I am pretty sure the Pastelbord was gray to start with.  I used a variety of pastel brands.  I worked from hard to softer with the exception that I will use a hard pastel near the end for blending. 

Before I took the painting to Art Connections, I took a photo in our bedroom so you can get an idea of the size.  It is over a night stand with an office size chair.  The frame is dark brown with black accents near the painting.

Now on to another project ...

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I have a couple of art links for you:

A short video from artist Daniel Edmondson about how the direction of light affects eye movement.  Interesting concept.

I follow a blog by Julie Ford Oliver, Las Cruces, New Mexico.  I like her New Mexico paintings. 

New Mexico Evening
Pastel on Sanded Paper, 14 x 11 inches
Julie's painting reminded me of this similar style house I painted ages ago (2003).  I've learned a lot about painting backgrounds, atmosphere and distance since then.  I should paint a new New Mexico evening.


Bag Blog said...

The darks around yours blooms work very well. I love the cactus. I like the colors on the NM Evening - very fall-ish :)

Jo Castillo said...

Bag Blog, thank you. I like painting cactus. I like the NM Evening house, too. The photo is not good, cameras are much better now and back then I probably just snapped a photo. I do like houses and purple and orange together. I'm not really a "fall" colors person as I have said.

hmuxo said...

Beautifully painted, Jo!!!

Jo Castillo said...

hmuxo, Hilda, thank you so much. I enjoy painting larger but don't do it very often.

Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

ooh so many gorgeous colours on that cactus painting!

Jo Castillo said...

Jennifer Rose, thank you so much! I need to go check and see what you are up to!

Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

not much, busy busy with uni work :p

Jo Castillo said...

Jennifer Rose, Ha. Hard when work gets in the way of art work. Thinking of you.

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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 Niños. (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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