Tuesday, April 25, 2017


"Fritz"  (pastel, 6x6 inches)  $250 framed

I just got called off the wait list for the Cottonwood Art Festival, May 6 & 7 in Richardson TX. Yay! So the new stuff I paint in the next week-and-a-half will be slated as "festival inventory" and will skip the auctions.

Fritz was underpainted at my last workshop, but here are some pics of the pastel process:

And here he is in the frame!

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Saturday, April 22, 2017


"Golden"  (pastel, 12x9 inches) $1350

My latest Renaissance Portrait has been accepted into the Pastel Painters Society of Cape Cod annual exhibition For Pastels Only on Cape Cod 2017.  The show will take place at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod in South Yarmouth, MA, June 20 - July 16, 2017.
Opening Reception:  Saturday, June 24, 6:00 to 9:00 pm (Awards Presentation at 7:00) My schedule won't permit me to be there, but if you're in the area, please stop in and see the show!

For more information visit www.pastelpainterssocietyofcapecod.com 

This is the fourth or fifth portrait I've done using the toned underpainting technique with the gold and terra cotta primers, and I think it's the most successful with letting much of the underpainting "speak."

 IMO, she desperately needed an elf ear!

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Friday, April 21, 2017


"Marie"  (pastel 7x5 inches)  sold

This was the other of the two back-to-back demos and simultaneous underpaintings from last weekend's workshop in Lee's Summit, MO. One of the ladies bought both Marie and Leonard, and, since when someone buys a demo that is not yet titled I ask them to title it, she named them for her parents. I thought that was sweet!

Here are the few shots I got during the painting of Marie:

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Thursday, April 20, 2017


"Easterland"  (pastel, 6x8 inches) click here to bid or buy 

My Easter Sunday demo from last weekend's workshop in Lee's Summit, MO. Starting with a single-primed board (with one layer of my gold pastel primer already applied) I underpainted with warm-toned pastels and washed them in with mineral spirits..

Then I decided I would try a limited palette exercise, and only use my new Unison John's Set which I'd had for months and hadn't broken in yet. I was joking with my students earlier that I'd been meaning to use them for a long time, but I had those symptoms that so many of us pastel artists get with a new set and kept making the excuse "Oh, they're just too beautiful to break!"

So with encouragement, I used them for this landscape. I so rarely get out of my comfort zone this way that I did have some moments of frustration when I couldn't go any darker than the set's medium-dark greenish blue, and also when I realized the set has no warm greens! After just a few minutes, I had to turn off the photograph, and then things went more smoothly. I reminded myself that this was the same image I had used in Marla Bagetta's little workshop at the last IAPS, and I had done 6 tiny variations then.

I just kept layering up the proper values, and used the underpainting to keep a hint of warmth.
 I ended up using 12 of the 18 colors in John's Set by Unison.

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017


"Lee"  (pastel, 8x8 inches)  click here to bid or buy

My first (and last) demo of the weekend's workshop in Lee's Summit, MO last weekend. Started on Friday with the underpainting and some of the pastel, then finally got him done on Sunday since I couldn't stand to let him go home unfinished.

Below is a shot of the ladies on Sunday. Unfortunately Lana had to leave on Saturday, so she's missing from this shot.

And speaking of workshops, I still have spaces left in some of my summer and fall workshops this year, including...

June 7, 2017 - "The Intimate Animal Portrait"   - at the IAPS Convention, Albuquerque, NM. If you're lucky to have registered for the convention (which is now full with a wait list) you can still sign up for my Wednesday workshop there (which is not quite full!)

July 15-17, 2017 - with the Wisconsin Pastel Artists, Milwaukee, WI - To register contact Marcia Gorra-Patek, marciagpwpa@gmail.com

July 24-26, 2017 -  "Capture The Light" -   Artensity Workshops, Ann Arbor, MI   

August 9-11, 2017 - "Pastel in Miniature" at the Kerr Arts and Cultural Center, Kerrville, TX
Info on the KACC Site (scroll down to my listing)      Registration Link

November 13-17, 2017 - through Wimberley Artists WorkshopsHosted at Creek Haven Inn, Wimberley, TX. An "All Inclusive Retreat Experience"!
Registration Link

See all of my workshops including wait-listed, on my website Here!


Saturday, April 15, 2017

Leonard (and the MO workshop)

"Leonard" (pastel, 7x5 inches)  sold

From this weekend's workshop in Lee's Summit, Missouri. In each workshop, I like to do at least one "double-demo" where I underpaint two small paintings simultaneously, and then apply the pastel on one right after the other, with no talking, as if I was at home in my studio. This gives the students an abbreviated glimpse of my assembly-line approach to small batches of paintings. This was one of two cows I painted in this morning's double-demo.

Below you can see some progress shots, and some pics from the workshop:

A color layering exercise 

The ladies hard at work!

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017


"Howdy!"  (pastel, 5x7 inches)  click here to bid or buy

Whew! Finally got through the taxes! I have a new small batch of minis prepped for my workshop this weekend near Kansas City and I managed to get this cute goat done in between hours of hunching over the computer re-categorizing months of imported PayPal transactions. Ugh.

Enjoy these progress shots!

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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Calm River

"Calm River" (pastel, 8x10 inches)  click here to bid or buy

My final Sunday demo of last weekend's workshop. I always try to work in at least one landscape. With this one I showed my students how you can calm down a complex landscape photo by simplifying the basic value patterns in the underpainting.

See the progress shots:

This was how I left it at the demo. I had added the sky but today I didn't like it, so re-introduced more shrubbery back there before calling it done.

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