Countdown! When the exhibit opening is less days away than fingers on the hands, the scrambling really begins. So much to do, so little time…. Anyway….

For today’s posting, I want to share with you a little about my process for the making of Blue Lady. I did this piece specifically for the Landscape Bodyscape exhibit. My intent was to make it a crossover for the two subject matters of our show.

This piece is done on Ersta, a 400 grit sandpaper that was originally made to be used for leather tanning, but then pastel and colored pencil artists discovered it. The down side that has concerned some of us is that the paper is not acid-free on the back side. (I’ve been spraying the back with a product to make it acid-free.) So the company that makes this paper now makes sandpaper called Uart that comes in 400 to 800 grit and it is acid-free.

Drawing on sandpaper does eat up the pencils, but having this extra “tooth” also allows for many many layers of color to be put down. Generally, I choose to use sandpaper when I want to work with tones first, as I did with this piece, by doing the entire project in grays, setting up the light and dark areas. This is also referred to as studying the values. Then I build the color on top of the gray values. By the time I get to the color, I already have a “few” layers of colored pencil on the paper. I followed this same process for another piece that will be in the show, Ray, At the Window. Upon completion, both of these pieces have fifteen or more layers of colored pencil on them. Time intensive, yes, but colored pencil artists can be a strange lot.

Thanks for reading!

Filed under: Art Work

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