Tuesday, 8 November 2011


Some more progress on Shona's portrait today.    I've decided I DO like the colour background 'as is' but obviously the final decision will rest with my client.

I'm having a little trouble with the brighter highlighted areas of her face as the pale pink and white pastels seem to disappear into the fabric of the pastelmat after a couple of hours (I'm sure its not my imagination)!!  I believe pastelmat is a ground cork surface so perhaps it really does absorb the pastel ??

Has anybody else experienced this?   Would a light spray of fixative help do you think?

I'm out for the day tomorrow (my Pilgrims Hospice eBay Office 'job') so won't be drawing ....


Doreen Cross said...

Looking great Sue. I am not yet into pastel so not able to be of help there. Love those eyes, they talk.

Great work. Looking forward to the next update.

Jan/PetsToPosies.com said...

This is really, really looking great! I'm not sure what you mean about the pastelmat but I do know it takes a lot of layers to get the desired result sometimes. Fixative will "melt" light colors and they really will disappear then. But, eventually, the color will build up and remain.

I know it's difficult getting the right color in pastel unless you own every stick ever made, but the girl's bangs look a lot different in color than the rest of her hair. I'm sure you'll adjust as you go along though.

To me, the background color is perfect!

sue said...

Thanks for commenting Dors and Jan. I'm not a fan of pastel fixative (I prefer to 'steam' the pictures which doesn't seem to alter the colours as much.
I know what you mean about the 'bangs' Jan (or the fringe as we'd call it here) - there's a big difference in colour in the ref but I do plan to adjust the colours so the difference isn't so pronounced.

Its interesting that I'm using a different computer/monitor (taking a break from my Hospice eBay 'job' and the colours are much brighter on this one. My screen at home is about 5 years old so maybe I should think about upgrading soon.

Chrissy said...

I think this is looking great...although, I hear what you say about pastelmat melting. It does this for me in coloured pencil too. I would be very careful using fixative...I have never tried that one but with zest-it...it was a horrible reaction which I will never repeat if I am working on a commission. I might try it for myself as an experimental thing when I get some spare time..you have captured a great look, she is beautiful.

Erik van Elven said...

I can't help you with the pastel advice since I'm mainly an oil painter but the painting is coming along great Sue.