Monday, April 23, 2012

Showing You Mine

Well!  It's certainly been a while since I've posted here on my blog.  I apologize but probably still wouldn't have a post if it weren't for my blogging friend, Sue, over at PencilPix.  She and I email back and forth some and we were chatting about updating our respective blogs when she issued the challenge saying "you show me yours and I'll show you mine" - well, I decided to take her up on that challenge!

It wasn't that I wanted to neglect my blog but I'm not much for multi-tasking and there's been a lot happening in the past few months.

For one thing, I'm still trying to find and learn a medium which will allow me to produce the paintings I want to do yet not have the paintings be so fragile.

Well, you know pastel is my medium of choice and it's really not so fragile if handled responsibly but it does need to be framed under glass and I'd really like to get away from that.  So, I've been experimenting with gouache, watercolor and acrylic.  I've produced quite a few paintings in one medium or the other but still haven't become really comfortable with any and all have attributes that just don't fit my way of working.

I really like pastel for the spontaneous way I can work in it.  It's always ready to go - no squeezing out paint, searching out brushes, getting water and no mixing on a palette.  That's such a plus for me as I tend to work "a stroke at a time" and it's so easy to lay out the pastels on my work table and work "as the spirit moves me".  There's no mess to clean up after every session and I don't have to worry about painting drying up and becoming unusable.

But, I ship a lot of paintings and I really would like for them to arrive intact, hence the exploration into other media.

I kinda stretched the truth a bit when I said that I had produced quite a few paintings during my blog hiatus.  It's true that I've started many paintings but I haven't really finished many.  I get to that "ugly stage" and just lose interest so they remain unfinished!

However, I did finish (I think it's finished anyway) the portrait of the little Maltese above recently.  It's been painted in acrylics, mainly acrylic ink, and it went fairly well.  I do find that I paint more loosely with a brush than I do with a pastel stick and I don't know if that's good or bad.  I also agonize over brush strokes, color and trying to get that one last stroke that completes the painting without over-doing it.

There wasn't really a reference photo for this little fluff - it's a combination of refs along with looking at our own little one for some of the details.  I would have used our baby exclusively but I really find it hard to paint our own pets.  I just didn't want to add that pressure on top of battling with an unfamiliar medium!

OK, Sue, here's mine - where's yours?


Doreen Cross said...

Hi Jan, It's so good to see you back blogging. I have missed visiting your site. I know how you feel with so many mediums to choose from. I have several that I haven't even tried yet. I am still trying to master the color pencils which I have such a hard time with.
It does get hard at times trying to juggle the time we have to draw/paint. comment on our friends blogs, keep up with everything in the home, family etc.
Love the little dog and I am looking forward to seeing what Sue produces. 2 great friends and 2 wonderful artists.
much love. xx don't give up will find your medium as I know now that mine is graphite but I still have to go through the many options yet with all the learning.

sue said...


Got me!! Well done Jan for starting the ball rolling .... and Dors for providing another 'kick to the backside' (that's the polite way of saying it).

Jan - your 'little fluff' is lovely and stands out so well with that blue background. Now you've started we'll expect a real flurry of finished pieces :-)

Jan/ said...

You're always so encouraging, Dors! Thanks so much for stopping by. I have a thing for trying to try almost all the mediums out there but I guess I need to settle on one and try to master it!

Jan/ said...

Well, I guess it was time, Sue! Thanks to you for stopping by also but you may not get a flurry of finished pieces just because I reluctantly finished one! We'll see what I come up with after I see your new post! lol

Christine Perry | Graphite Art said...

Hi Jan, that's a very cute painting! It reminds me of the type of colorful artwork a lady does here in town. She draws mainly dogs and cats, and I think she is doing really well selling them at the market. Her booth seems always busy. You might be on to something. ;-)

Jan/ said...

Hi Christine! So nice of you to stop by. I don't know about being on to something - I'm just struggling to get some kind of likeness in paint! I wasn't really going for colorful in this instance but just trying to see all the colors in a white dog!
Can't wait to see the conclusion of your Bichon!