Posts Tagged ‘Caran D’Ache Neocolor II crayons’

PAINTING OTHERS TO FIND YOURSELF

July 16, 2015
CROPPED, full figure. MAN WITH AN OLIVE WALL. . copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Reproduce or PIN on PINTERST. Caran D'ACHE Neocolor 2 on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA PAPER.

CROPPED, full figure. MAN WITH AN OLIVE WALL. . copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do Not Reproduce or PIN on PINTEREST. Caran D’ACHE Neocolor 2 on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA PAPER.

Painting is self-discovery. Every good artist paints what he is.

JACKSON POLLOCK

I have been attending open session figure drawing classes this summer. It is the best meditation. Trying to truly see another person takes complete concentration, complete surrender on a certain level. Once the drawing process begins to take form, it is impossible to consciously THINK about anything else: one is fully invested in the present experience.

This sketch has been cropped for posting from a full figure pose.
I am using Caran D’Ache NEOCOLOR 2 watersoluble pastel crayons on STILLMAN AND BIRN ZETA multimedia paper. Strong fine lines are made with Conte pencil or DERWENT DRAWING pencil crayon. Zeta paper is able to withstand layers of wash and drawing without pills or abrasion.
Working over the course of about 2 hours, the slight adjustments of the model make me realize that nothing in life is still. Nothing. Charting movement, light, and singular moments of clear color become the activity. The wordy thinking-mind is silent. The eye is open. When the model takes a breath, so do I.
The end result is a surprise. The journey is everything.

EVERYDAY ABSTRACTION

July 4, 2015
Cropped section, full figure study. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do not reproduce or Pin on Pinterest. Caran D'Ache Neocolor 2 on Canson Mi-Tientes paper.

Cropped section, full figure study. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All Rights Reserved. Do not reproduce or Pin on Pinterest. Caran D’Ache Neocolor 2 on Canson Mi-Tientes paper.

Painter after painter, since the beginning of the century, has tended toward abstraction. First, the Impressionists simplified the landscape in terms of color, and then the Fauves simplified it again by adding distortion, which, for some reason, is a characteristic of our century.
MARCEL DUCHAMP

5 minute warm-ups. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do  not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

5 minute warm-ups. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce or PIN ON PINTEREST.

Early morning sketches at the NORTH CAROLINA ACADEMY OF ART…

EMBRACING THE UNKNOWN through the known

July 2, 2015
Dad and Me. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERED. Do not reproduce, or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D' ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 crayons on CANSON MI- TIENTES paper.

Dad and Me. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Do not reproduce, or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D’ ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 crayons on CANSON MI- TIENTES paper.

There are things known
and there are things unknown,
and in between are the doors of perception.
ALDOUS HUXLEY
Presently engaged in a positive struggle with the medium.
This was a phrase a teacher wrote in my evaluation as an early art student.
Maddening and puzzling at the time,the comment confused me. Consulting a MAGIC EIGHT BALL would have been more useful. Or perhaps a basket of fortune cookies would have been more satisfying. At any rate, I probably responded with a snotty THANKS KRESKIN and moved on…continuing to positively struggle with the medium with no appreciation of what that actually meant.
Later years proved the brutal honesty of this assessment: experimentation IS a positive struggle with a medium. The only way we learn ANYTHING is through playful experimentation.
It is way too hot to sketch on location the past week, but I wanted to learn how to manipulate CARAN D’ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 PASTELS to get some specific effects. Selfies are a good way to manage a new medium. If results are heinous, adding a mustache and a gnome hat are viable options at the end of a session! Antlers are even better.
Pastel is like poetry: it is a short ride to SUPERBAD. Pastel needs to have a sense of immediacy,variation in mark-making, a measure of authenticity, and lack of artifice. One needs to know when to stop. Knowing when to stop is the hardest thing to learn and almost impossible to teach. We need to find the borderland between done and overdone on our own.
Refraining is the most potent meditation.

SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER: NEOCOLOR CRAYONS

June 21, 2015
SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. DO NOT REPRODUCE or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D' ACHE NEOCOLOR WAX PASTELS  ON INGRES PAPER.

SELF PORTRAIT AS A BEAN COUNTER. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. DO NOT REPRODUCE or PIN ON PINTEREST. CARAN D’ ACHE NEOCOLOR WAX PASTELS ON INGRES PAPER.

INSPIRATION… SHE NEVER VISITS THE LAZY
David Hockney

True dat.

Another round with  NEOCOLOR 1 and NEOCOLOR 2 wax pastels, applied dry to charcoal paper.

When in doubt do a selfie, it protects the innocent!

PAINTING WITH CRAYONS: Caran D’ Ache NEOCOLOR 2 + Stillman & Birn Zeta

June 19, 2015
BETTER PART OF SHADOW. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE or Pin on Pinterest.

BETTER PART OF SHADOW. copyright 2015 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE or Pin on Pinterest.

Painting is an illusion, a piece of magic,
so what you see is not what you see.

PHILIP GUSTON
I really want to paint. In oil. In pastel.
But, it is sensible for me to avoid solvents and toxicity issues for health reasons and because there is not a dedicated ” work sink”. EXCUSES EXCUSES…CRY ME A RIVER….
So I have been muttering about exploring casein but slow to pull the pin on that grenade, when there are plenty of art supplies in studio. * {I still have a set of egg tempera in a drawer because at some point I realized I would have a better time dropping beans in a bottle with my nose rather than pick away stroke by stroke like a monk in the Middle Ages}.
Can I reinvent my process with existing materials, to get a painterly experience without fumes, pigment dust, or cruddy brushes? MAYBE. Let’s not give in to a failure of imagination before July.
The pastel yearning can be answered with Caran D’Ache NEOCOLOR 2 watersoluble wax pastels.
The painterly yearning can be addressed by starting with a toned ground which will allow me to manipulate surface paint into smudges and smears. I used Daniel Smith’s watercolor ground with a touch of M. Graham gouache for tint, based on a recommendation from my friend Janis ( a superior watercolorist and pigment poobah of the highest order ).
The need for a versatile surface can be answered by STILLMAN + BIRN’S ZETA mixed media paper.
Working alternately wet and dry with these crayons has opened up some new possibilities in life drawing sessions.  Just beginning to apply some ‘know- how’ to interpreting some other ideas to this method.
Just might be a painter’s summer yet!

TRY EVERYTHING: Listen to what you see…

July 24, 2014
FIGURE STUDY: STILLMAN & BIRN EPSILON JOURNAL. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. LAMY SAFARI pen, Noodlers Ink, Pitt artist pen, NEOCOLOR 2 crayon in gray, Davy's gray watercolor wash

FIGURE STUDY: STILLMAN & BIRN EPSILON JOURNAL. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. LAMY SAFARI pen, Noodlers Ink, Pitt artist pen, NEOCOLOR 2 crayon in gray, Davy’s gray watercolor wash.

I have taught my students not to apply rules
or mechanical ways of seeing.
JOSEPH ALBERS

Back drawing the figure regularly after a hiatus of more than a decade.

Clocked a lot of time in dark studios in the past, mostly in New York: Spring Street Studio ( a.k.a. Minerva’s group ), SVA, PARSONS, ART STUDENTS LEAGUE, … the list goes on and on.

Back then, I was using CONTE CRAYON, pencil, or charcoal. Now I am using ink. If the drawing is not truthful in the first few meaningful strokes, all the erasure in the world probably won’t help. Ink keeps you honest. Ink forces you to be AWAKE: every moment, every stroke.

5-minute study. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved.

5-minute study. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved.

The best book: JAMES McMULLAN, HIGH FOCUS DRAWING

McMullan also has an OPINIONATER blog about approaches to drawing called LINE BY LINE.

Check him out!

5-MINUTE STUDY. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. LAMY SAFARI PEN, Noodlers Ink, Pitt artist pen

5-MINUTE STUDY. © 2014 ELLEN WARD. All rights reserved. LAMY SAFARI PEN, Noodlers Ink, Pitt artist pen

 

BINDERS ARTFOLIO EVENT : ATLANTA, GA

November 9, 2013
ARTFOLIO EVENT FOR EDUCATORS. ATLANTA, GA.© 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN

ARTFOLIO EVENT FOR EDUCATORS. ATLANTA, GA.© 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN

Last weekend I had the chance to meet educators and artists at BINDERS ARTFOLIO EVENT. On Friday,  I shared the work in my STILLMAN & BIRN MULTIMEDIA SKETCHBOOKS. Still managed to get a rapid sketch done while the catering crew began setting up for the evening. MUSHROOM CAPS were outstanding. Getting a chance to meet so many creatives was a real treat.

BREAKFAST BEFOE THE DEMO DAY. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN.

BREAKFAST BEFOE THE DEMO DAY. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN.

On Saturday, BINDERS had a store event where there were workshops and demos. This gal is a bit foggy in the morning  and this sketch proves she was in good company. An early riser does not always equal a morning person: I need a hour of mentally swimming through pudding before I can really start the day.

One of the things I like about the STILLMAN & BIRN journals is that the paper is drawing friendly and paint worthy. Usually papers do not have both these qualities in balance. The demonstration showed the use of wet and dry techniques, alternating painting with drawing to create a full image. I used Caran D’Ache Neocolor II wax pastels and Supracolor watercolor pencils to experiment with line and wash.

The outstanding MISTER DON COLLEY was present with his amazing sketchbooks. You owe yourself a trip to his website to see ” how drawing is done.” You can catch wind of his travels HERE.

 

 

COLOR: AUTUMN

October 28, 2013
CLINE STREET. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN BETA MULTIMEDIA PAPER, CARAN D'ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS, SUPRACOLOR WATERCOLOR PENCILS

CLINE STREET. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN BETA MULTIMEDIA PAPER, CARAN D’ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS, SUPRACOLOR WATERCOLOR PENCILS

Color is my day-long obsession,  joy and torment.
CLAUDE MONET

Well, for a dude who painted gardens —old Monet was a bit high strung!

Took longer than usual to work on this piece, spending about an hour and change building intensity with the crayons.  Beautiful weather…

SKETCHING ON LOCATION: TIPS & TOOLS

October 27, 2013
Daffodils. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN BETA MULTIMEDIA JOURNAL, CARAN D'ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS , SUPRACOLOR SOFT WATERCOLOR PENCILS.

Daffodils. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN BETA MULTIMEDIA JOURNAL, CARAN D’ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS , SUPRACOLOR SOFT WATERCOLOR PENCILS.

Working with saturated color can be a process of translation. This sketch kicks up the clarity of every muted or chromatic gray with a relatively balanced  translation of the original arrangement. Choosing materials that lend themselves to this kind of sketching is key. Here I use CARAN D’ACHE Neocolor 2 crayons and Supracolor Soft Watercolor pencils in a STILLMAN & BIRN BETA MULTI-MEDIA JOURNAL.

NEOCOLOR II WAX PASTELS 
These crayons have a water-soluble wax base. Highly pigmented, they can be instantly liquified with a touch of water. You can sharpen them with a simple plastic pencil sharpener if a finer line is needed.

I use them both wet and dry to pull up the image. A good paper for this activity needs to be suited for multi-media work in order to draw dry on a wet surface. You can use techniques like brush lifting and scrubbing out to modify selected areas. Most watercolor papers are too soft for this kind of thing unless you use a very heavyweight surface. The BETA JOURNAL breaks up the crayon slightly when dry and facilitates an even wash when wet.

If you feel the need to ‘fix’ the image, there are many good workable fixatives on the market. I avoid exposure to solvents and simply place a sheet of glassine paper in my journal over these drawings. A hot car in the South will make a wax based medium eager to smudge very slightly.

SUPRACOLOR SOFT WATERCOLOR PENCILS
These tools are great to add details and provide hard edges. Although a dry NEOCOLOR 2 crayon has a waxy feel, I have been able to draw on top with a SUPRACOLOR PENCIL by dipping the tip in water and drawing wet on dry. These are excellent to use for initial roughs: the lines can be lost or found through the use of water or brush lifting.

These materials would be perfect for plein air sketching for several reasons:

1. LEAVE THE BAGGAGE AT THE AIRPORT: You are not loaded down like a pack mule for the sketching session. I think there is a definite connection between how much stuff one drags along and how many sketches one is able to produce. Do you want to be your own bellhop, or do you want to make some sketches?

2. LIMIT THE PALETTE: I never ever bring all the colors in my bag. Usually I bring 6 Neocolor crayons and 6 Supracolor pencils, so there is palette of 12 colors.  One pencil case can carry it all, though I like to keep the crayons in the metal case or in pastel box to guard against breakage.

3. YOU CAN PAINT AND DRAW: Sketching on location is a ‘fly by the seat of your paints’ proposition. These tools give you versatility and acknowledge that the goal is to be in the moment and be responsive to the setting. Everything else is gravy. Even a long session of sketching ( an hour or more ) will have a better result when the focus is narrow and the means are limited.

4.  THE STILLMAN & BIRN BETA JOURNAL IS DESIGNED FOR MULTI-MEDIA USE: I like a journal that can be held in hand easily. I also like the option of working across the gutter. The binding is excellent so you will not worry about pages coming loose once water hits the paper. There is no ‘show-through’ to the opposing side of the paper so you can work the ENTIRE BOOK and paint on every single page.

WHAT A BURGER: KANNAPOLIS NC

October 27, 2013
WHAT A BURGER. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN ZETA JOURNAL, CARAN D'ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS, GOLDEN FLUID ACRYLIC IN A BRUSH PEN, CARAN D'ACHE SUPRACOLOR SOFT WATERCOLOR PENCILS

WHAT A BURGER. © 2013 ELLEN WARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT REPRODUCE REBLOG OR PIN. STILLMAN & BIRN ZETA JOURNAL, CARAN D’ACHE NEOCOLOR 2 CRAYONS, GOLDEN FLUID ACRYLIC IN A BRUSH PEN, CARAN D’ACHE SUPRACOLOR SOFT WATERCOLOR PENCILS

When in doubt: draw a pig.
ME

ZETA is a multimedia paper by Stillman & Birn. It has a surface similar to hot press watercolor paper, but it is much more friendly to drawing tools —particularly when wet. I wanted to get out and draw the day but ended up driving in circles, unable to focus. Pigs are a good answer in this kind of a situation, although I usually doodle them.

In the South it is not hard to find a pig sign because it is a Bar-B- Q nation. I was fresh off a late night read about Diebenkorn’s flippity-flopping between pure abstraction and representation. His colors were floating around in my head.

I sketched with Ultramarine Blue GOLDEN FLUID ACRYLIC in a brush pen to place objects in space. Caran D’Ache Neocolor 2 crayons and Supracolor Soft pencils were worked both dry and wet. A good amount of layering took place without any pilling on the paper surface! Although the smooth surface may seem a natural choice for detailed work, I was very pleased with a broad approach and am eager to experiment with matte acrylic next time.