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Thursday, 21 June 2007

Horse & Hound

Pastel Portrait
What inspired me to create this portrait?
I was asked to commission a portrait painting of a dog and horse by a friend of my son. I was emailed a number of photographs that were taken the previous weekend. I felt that this would be a good opportunity to further practise hair and fur textures. Initially, the portrait was going to be small. However, after doing some primary sketches I realised that to get the appropriate proportions and to produce the required texture detail the canvas had to be of a reasonable size – I first established the size for the dog. This then dictated the size of the horse and subsequently the size of the canvas.

Why did I choose Pastel Pencils to produce this piece?
My first attempt at this piece, I tried Artist’s Colour Pencils – but wasn’t comfortable with hair textures and colour blending. As an example, I was unable to blend the colours of the dog’s hair. I had worked with Pastel Pencils once before on a smaller project and found that they provided a much better depth of colour for my style mainly due to the chalkiness of the pastel material. I find that when I apply pastel to paper, it comes alive.

How long did this piece take me?
Because of the intensity of the detail, I find that I can only spend around 2 hours at a time working on a piece. Any longer than this and I lose focus and it would lack the require quality of detail (even a short break doing the housework and restarting is enough to give me a break – much to my wife’s delight!!!). With this in mind, the overall piece took about 7 days with approximately 6 hours per day.

How did I feel about the end result and looking back, would I have done anything different?
I was overjoyed with the end result. When I reflect on it now, it is hard to comprehend how much I have progressed in comparison to previous commissions. I would not have done anything different with this piece, however next time I would do it with more confidence.


Kamal Mettananda said...

Oh! Did u draw this? It's very beautiful.

Monday Morning Power said...

I really like your work. Keep on posting. Take a look at my blog and let me know what you think. If your are in agreement, I would love to share links with you.

Amel's Realm said...

WOW!!! LOVELY portrait! I'm never good at drawing, but I LOVE looking at wonderful paintings. :-)))

Keep up the WONDERFUL work! :-D

ArtyDave said...


Kamal, Thanks for the kind comment. These are indeed my drawings. I will add some more examples plus some techniques that I use in future posts..please feel free to come back and visit anytime.

Monday, thanks for the encouragement and kind comments. I look foward to visiting your blog and will be sure to leave a comment.

Amel, thanks for all of your feedback and comments. I'm glad you enjoy my work. It is nice to hear what other people think. The purpose of my blog is to encourage viewers to enjoy art. I look forward to seeing your blog too.

Thanks again ~ Dave

Paper Fan Club said...

Dave, those are incredible -- so life like. I'll be sure to check back often to see what you're working on.

Amel's Realm said...

Oh yeah, Dave, forgot one thing.

What's REALLY cool to me about your blog is when you described the painting: what inspired you, why, etc. I've always been wondering how long it takes to make a certain painting and how the artist feels about his/her own paintings, so now I know. INCREDIBLY interesting! :-)))

Btw, I used to have a book on Claude Monet. I LOVE his works even though I'm not an artistic person (his landscape pics take me to places I've never been). I used to gaze at some of his works in the book which were my fave for a LOOOONNNGG time he he he...

Too bad the book was too heavy for me to bring to Finland. :-(((