Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Polly Cullen

Fishing Net 12x18 watercolor and pastel

I worked from a photo I took in the early morning light. I enjoyed the glow on the foreground, the nets and the fisherman. i stayed quite literal with my charcoal drawing, adding the cross and enlarging the trees in the upper right quadrant to add balance and interest to the composition. next I applied a washy watercolor underpainting with lots of pinks and oranges to hopefully glow and shimmer through the pastel layers. I then worked the entire surface with layers of pastel. I wanted to emphasize the contrast betwen the cool offwhite building and the warm glow of the white boat. My goal in the early stages of pastel application was to set the stage for the mood of the sky, the translucence of the nets and a morning glow throughout the piece. I worked back and forth between warms and cools and further established values. The final layers are so much fun! I finally let the extreme lights, the highlights and the flourishes have their way. It was a fun painting process from the first charcoal to the last pastel stroke.

Airport Lines 18x24 Watercolor and Pastel
Polly Cullen is known for her ability to capture everyday life in rich color. She teaches a 4 day workshop using watercolor underpainting and pastels on a variety of surfaces. "Shimmer and Glow with Pastels" occurs in December at the Sedona Arts Center. See the details HERE.

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