Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Zoe - a proper pastel painting

I can't believe it has been so long since I posted last! I'm not sure where the time has gone or exactly what I've been doing with my time - eek!

I finally sat down last night and started on a proper painting of Zoe. I finished it tonight.

Having a great photograph to work from has made all the difference. I'm really pleased with the way this one has turned out and Zoe's ears are in proportion to her head ;-) this time too.

I love painting eyes, I always start with the eyes because I feel like if I don't get the eyes right I won't capture what makes the cat, dog or person special and who they are.

I do wish you could see it in person - the scanner sometimes doesn't scan pastels well. I don't know if it is the reflective quality of pastels or what but it does give me fits sometimes to get a true color with a scan. This has a bit of a green cast to it and in real life it is much warmer with a nice soft quality about it. I'm taking it to Genevieve tomorrow so won't have a chance to take a photograph of it but maybe when she gets it framed and hung up she will take a picture of it that I can share with y'all.

This is 7" x 5" on velour paper. I've used soft Rembrandt pastels, Conte sticks and Carb Othello pastel pencils.

21 comments:

Marsha Robinett said...

Karen,
What can I say, this portrait of Zoe is beautiful. You've done a wonderful job here. I too like this reference much better. The eyes are fantastic and her fur...well, it's almost touchable. Thanks for sharing.

Dean H. said...

You really nailed the eyes, Karen! I like the total feeling of softness in this painting.
The soft and hidden edges in the outer contour are what really make it outstanding to me.

Karen Hargett said...

Marsha thank you so much. The reference photo made the difference for the final painting for sure.

Hi Dean! I'm glad you like the eyes and that you noticed I did some hidden edges! I've been trying to do that more. It is so easy to pull some of the background color down on to the subject and it really changes the entire painting when you do such a little thing.

Sheila said...

It's about time! Thanks for giving me my Karen fix... I'll be okay for a while now. LOL

Zoe is gorgeous. I love the background you chose and her jewel like moist eyes. Bravo!

Karen Hargett said...

Sheila thanks so much. Sorry it took me so long to post something. I'm glad you like the background. I couldn't decide what I wanted to do. Sometimes that is scary but these colors worked well.

Regina Calton Burchett said...

Karen - You did a phenomenal job on the eyes - they are simply amazing. Not overdone at all, but excellent. The entire portrait is great and better than a photo! I hope you get a good photo and enter this piece into a competition.

Karen Hargett said...

Thanks so much Regina - that means a lot to me. Maybe I will enter it in a pastel contest - good idea.

Barbara Pask said...

Oh Karen, I just love the eyes, this looks so much like my kitty. I know your friend will love it too.

Karen Hargett said...

Thank you Barbara - Genevieve was thrilled with it.

Holly Zemak said...

I found your blog thru Deano's Den. Your pastels are beautiful. Billy Bob is a great piece, especially with all you went thru. Nice to find a pastel artist.

Karen Hargett said...

Hi Holly - thanks so much! We pastel artists are few and far between it seems. Thanks for stopping by. BTW - I've checked out your blog - love your work!

Susan Carlin said...

Stunning, Karen!

candy said...

you're such a great artist! Cute kitty!

:)
candy

Karen Hargett said...

Hey Susan - good to see you and thanks!

Hi Candy - thank you! Thanks for visiting my blog.

Dean H. said...

Karen...check out my blog. I have awarded you the "I Care" Keepsake. If you choose, you may pass it on to two bloggers who make the blogosphere a happier place to be in. Provide links to them and let them know they have been selected by you.

Karen Hargett said...

Dean - thank you - quite an honor!

Helen Read said...

Karen, so nicely done! Love the color scheme and how you've captured the look in her eyes! :)

Karen Hargett said...

Thanks so much Helen!

Cathy said...

Hi Karen

I popped over at Holly Zemak's suggestion as she said your work was worth seeing. She is definitely right. I love this cat pastel of Zoe. I take my hat off to anyone who can produce beautiful pastels because I think it is quite a difficult medium to do well and get detail in.

Carolina said...

This is something else...

Karen Hargett said...

Cathy I'm sorry I'm late in responding to your post - don't know how that happened. Anyway I'm so glad you stopped by. I love working in pastels and we seem to get along ;-)

Hey Carolina - good to see you again.