Sunday, April 26, 2009

Dusty Work

I am greatly enjoying working with pastels. Not necessarily the color tones commonly known as pastels, but the media known as pastels. Which, I always called chalk. Guess you can charge more for them if you call tem pastels. Anyway, I seem to be finding my greatest degree of success with them currently. Not sure if it's this specific project, or the indications of a greater preference in the arc of my artistic career (don't that sound cool??). Looking back, I have done quite a bit of work with chalk in the past, second only in quantity to colored pencil. Think one of the things I really enjoy about it is being able to do the blending with my hands. The way I've been using it, it's a very physical media. Not that I couldn't do that with acrylics, I just haven't yet. The oil pastels I'm not so crazy about. Kinda reminds me of an overly soft crayon. May be that my choice of substrate isn't right, but at the moment, something about that media doesn't quite ring with me. Having a hard time blending it, even with stumps. I think the next thing I have to do is address how to seal the chalk pieces I've been doing. I'm thinking of using a spray fixative, but I have to find one that doesn't change the color of the piece, or make the substrate warp. Of course, if I hard mounted my substrate before working with it, I wouldn't have to worry about warpage (that's just a fun word to say). Yet another consideration to throw into the mix. Gesso is another consideration. I'm thinking that may give the surface a bit too much tooth, and make blending overly difficult. The medium texture paper works pretty well for holding the chalk and still letting me move it around some when I want to. So, tomorrow I will possibly sacrifice one of the earlier versions of the 'Kitchen' series to the art gods in hopes of finding a way to seal the chalk onto the paper. Alternately, I could just never physically touch any of my chalk pieces ever again. At this point in time, I don't know which would be better.

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