A colored pencil class -- finally!

colored pencil class
Last week I took a one-day class on colored pencils -- a medium that doesn't get much respect in art schools, I gather, given how hard it was to find a class. I was thankful that the Schack Art Center offered one, only a 30-minute drive from home.

I learned several things from our effervescent Italian instructor: With colored pencils, you work from light to dark (starting with pure white for the lightest areas). Turpentine helps blend the colors. Smaller is better, since it takes so long to fill the page. Sketch quick thumbnails in graphite first, to play with different elements and layouts.

I discovered a few things about my own artistic leanings as well. I'm not crazy about toothy paper. I pay more attention to shape and composition than to color. I need to slow down and put down each stroke of color mindfully, not frantically like I'm trying to strike a match.

Below are my attempts, along with the photographs I worked from. 

These cats are from an exhibit I saw last year. I swapped out the boring monochrome cat on the upper left for a fancier one. It looks like the big cat is winking at me.
colored pencil class
I saw these luscious veggies at a farmer's market outside Chicago last summer. Our instructor suggested outlining the eggplants with a sharpie. It flattens them, but I like the way it looks.
colored pencil class
A bowl of eggs and empty nests, arranged by a paper artist in New Mexico. I like the everything but the nests, which were too detailed for my newbie colored pencil skills.
colored pencil class


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