Thursday, February 13, 2014

Salmon River

Salmon River
6"by 8" soft pastel on Colorfix suede
I took this reference photo of the Salmon River last summer.  It is part of the Merrimack River watershed. 
Last Saturday and Sunday I painted at Lake Street Garden Center in their new greenhouse.  The sun was out, the greenhouse was warm and it was a pleasant reminder of summer.
I saw an article by Richard McKinley before I left for the event and thought I would give it a try. He suggested doing a value drawing with umber and coating over it with clear gesso to seal the drawing and create a grit for the pastels. Then he added a watercolor under painting with soft pastel on top.  The gesso made my drawing run a bit.  The watercolor was fun to add because I could be as splashy as I wanted as long as I stayed true to the values. The soft pastel went very quickly because I had so much structure already.  I enjoyed this technique and will try it again.
Today we are in the midst of "Pax" a persistent winter storm.  So far we only have 2 to 3 inches but that is on top of last week's snow. The wind is starting to pick up so I don't think we are near the end. I am tired of winter but I did enjoy having a "snow day" to stay home and paint and get myself out of the painting slump I have been in for the past week.

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