Thursday, September 29, 2016

Big Mama

"Big Mama"  (pastel, 36x36 inches)  sold

My newest show-stopper for upcoming art festivals, since I took my other large works to the Gallery at Round Top over the summer. This one will be with me at the Bayou City Art Festival, downtown Houston next weekend, October 8-9, 2016.

If these calves look familiar, one or both have featured in a few other of my paintings over the past couple years. They're from a herd that used to be near Walburg, TX, just north of Georgetown.

I took copious amounts of progress shots throughout this very long process. Here are just a few, starting with the underpainting..
 I start with an initial layer of gold acrylic pastel primer spread across a large piece of Gatorboard. This is Quinacridone Nickel Azo Gold fluid acrylic color mixed into Golden (brand) Fine Pumice Gel. The gel is clear, so the color mixture is semi-transparent, and gets darker on each application. I usually then apply a couple more layers of the gold to start building up my values of my drawing.
 This time, however, my drawing was so hard to see, that I decided to start my next layer of primer with the terra cotta instead. Usually my final layer of primer, the Art Spectrum (brand) Pastel Primer in the terra cotta color gets in my dark values..
 I use a damp sponge with some of the terra cotta, to get a little bit of variations in my values here.
Then, I went back in with more of the gold primer to catch those in-between values.

 Then comes the pastel.

 Before I get too close to finished, I like to check the painting with the frame to make sure it's going to be harmonious. This looks like I'll need to add some warm greens to the shadows tone down all those violety-reds and pick up some of that gorgeous wood color from the frame.

 I didn't like that solid dark background...

 That's better.

All done! (I hang the frame on my easel to see how it looks. Now off to my framer to put it together with the glass!)

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