Friday, July 25, 2014

Art Lesson: Chalk Pastel Daylily


My life lately seems to revolve around ducklings and chicks, gardening, weeding, and picking berries...

and more berries...

and more berries.

We have had an abundance of the tiny finger fruits: black raspberries and now wineberries.
I have been freezing them so that when the fall comes and it is cooler, I can make some jellies and berry syrup.

We have picked and frozen well over 50 quarts of berries...our freezer is getting full!

The other day I just had the urge to get back to art again;
so I threw my to-do list aside and grabbed my pastels and paper and took a seat out in front of whatever I saw that looked pretty and inspiring.

 This decorative maple with the garden decoration looked nice to me.

 Crocosmia are starting to bloom inside it.

I started a rough sketch of it...

and added a few details.

I was suddenly needed inside the house by one of the little people, so I set the sketch down and ran in.

By the time I came back from the situation (as well as a few distractions along the way),
I noticed a small summer drizzle had started and when I got to my paper, it looked like this:

 I was feeling like I did not want to continue with such a large sketch anyhow,
and by this time, one of the kids had followed me and decided she wanted to create some artwork, too.

 As we prepared to share the pastels, I found a pretty daylily flower I decided to sketch.

 Isn't it superb?  I just love the colors of daylilies!

 I lightly sketched the outline of the bloom with pencil on my paper.
(I had chosen to do the sketch on yellow paper, trying to capture the yellow of the inner part of the flower.)

I decided to use the over-layment of tracing paper trick to get the main veins of the petals etched in.

 This creates a sunken line that will avoid the colors as they are put down.

 I started with a light pink on the petals, a light green inside the center, and a touch of yellow surrounding the green.  I like to start light and build up the colors from there.

 By this time, another artist had joined our group and she began creating.

 (I was hoping her art depiction would in reality leave us alone for the rest of the day).

I continued to add colors to my bloom, trying to build up to the colors I could see in the flower.

It is always more fun when everybody joins in on creating a few sketches of art.
Finally, my son could not resist the crowd that had gathered around the picnic table covered in pastels.

Of course, his art always seems to revolve around dinosaurs and dragons.

 Taking pictures of everybody else's artwork meant I was asked to take one of hers,
except she can never resist making a face,...

 but eventually, she can't help letting a smile out.

 Finally, I got my sketch to the point where I felt it was done and I decided I would stop and spray fixative on all of our work.

Chalk pastels are so much fun to create with and I felt happy that the blossom turned out as well as it did for just a random afternoon sketch.

I think the best part about this artistic endeavor however, was the fun memories all the artists came and made with me.

How about you?  Have you taken a break and sketched something in your July days?
If not, there are a few more days left, so see if you can take a few minutes to get something sketched...
you'll be glad you did!