6×6 oil on canvas board

This is a small. The goal was to work for one hour. Once my husband put on music everything started working nicely. It’s amazing how that happens. I only had an hour, but it might be worth revisiting this image in a larger size when I have a bit more time. 🙂

I look at this corner of the mantle every day when I sit on the couch. The view has a lot of shadow and depth, so I’m always looking at it.

I like the space around it too and the white curtains and plaster walls in the north light look lovely. I’d have to make a much bigger sketch to include all that too though.

This is from a morning in November with my husband and the dogs near the river.

I recently received a set of Sennelier pastels for my birthday and this is the first time I’ve used them. I was afraid the set had too many browns. I almost returned it! But I decided to keep it and in time get a few sticks of purples and pinks (which it is missing!) to round it out.

The sticks are buttery and have unbelievable coverage. And the colors are better on paper than they look in the box. They were more difficult to control than Rembrandt’s, but I’m glad I kept them. In time I’ll get better at handling them (I hope) and I do really like their feeling.

I’ve been using pastels to try to break out of a rut I’ve been in. The pastels help for several reasons.

1. They are quicker than painting. 2. The paper is less expensive than canvas. 3. The pigments are pure.

This lets me try ideas easily and frees me up to take chances. It has the added benefit of forcing me to be braver with color than I usually am.

Anyway, at least the pastels have me making art again and, right now, that’s huge. I have a sense that what I’m learning now could blow my art out of the water if I can translate it to my paintings. But we’ll have to see how everything goes.

This is a pretty lose and abstract interpretation of our pear tree in blossom.

This is a slightly different use of the medium. I’m not yet sure how I feel about the outcome, but I did enjoy pushing the pastels to see what they could do.

I was trying to play with blurry/sharp focal points. There is a lot of pastel on the paper.