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The Pastel Journal

The Pastel Journal January/February 2020

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Pastel Journal covers topics of interest to working pastelists as well as those who work in pastel as an additional medium along with those who are just experimenting with the medium.

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Paese:
United States
Lingua:
English
Editore:
Peak Media Properties, LLC
Frequenza:
Bimonthly
COMPRA NUMERO
6,91 €(VAT inclusa)
ABBONATI
25,90 €(VAT inclusa)
6 Numeri

in questo numero

2 minuti
a story to tell

Sometimes, when an artist paints a landscape, there’s an obvious narrative at work. This is especially true when figures or animals are present in the composition—a horse and rider heading into the distance, apple pickers in the trees, shell seekers at the seashore. The story finds its center in the experience of these players. For Susan Grossman (page 40), it’s the rather mundane moments of urban life that attract her attention: umbrella-toting pedestrians, taxis, cyclists and crosswalks. You can practically hear the horns honking. But a story can also develop without the presence of life—a painting of “the gathering storm” is a perfect example. “In every outthrust headland, in every curving beach, in every grain of sand there is the story of the earth.”—RACHEL CARSON Very often, however, a landscape is not…

2 minuti
peasants in pastel: millet and the pastel revival at the getty museum

In much the same way that celebrities “of the people” enjoy a specific kind of loyal following today, the artist Jean-Francois Millet was both revered and scorned for his artistic focus on the peasants of northern France. His family was one of farmers, and he once declared, “Je suis paysan paysan,” meaning “I am a peasant’s peasant.” During a time when portraits were primarily reserved for Europe’s royalty and wealthiest patrons, Millet was using the medium to paint pictures of life among agricultural laborers—and even displayed the works in Paris’ Salon—to the shock of its critics. Instead of biblical scenes and Greek mythology, Millet used his grand-scale paintings to bring the average Frenchman to the glamorous world of 19th-century Parisian fine art. Eventually, the artist would turn to pastel with the encouragement…

2 minuti
the lay of the land(scape)

KNOW YOUR HOOK Deciding what to paint can frustrate the most seasoned of artists. Should I do this? Should I do that? There are limitless possibilities—even in the most mundane location. To help ground myself and find focus before committing pigment to surface, I start with a simple question: What about this scene attracts my attention? It might be subject matter (I like meandering streams and certain species of trees). It might also be the dramatic contrast of value, color interactions, textural rhythms or another aspect of design. Once I identify the hook, I can begin to arrange the composition to better communicate this concept. A cautionary note: When selecting a scene based on subject matter, it’s critical that you also analyze the core visual elements: shape, value, color arrangement, etc.…

1 minuti
paint under the sun

While photography is a useful tool in our modern creative lives, there’s nothing that can compare to the actual act of working from life. The interaction of subject, light and artist hones a critical eye that will inform the rest of your work. If you normally paint in the studio from photo reference material, realize that the time you spend in the landscape makes you more sensitive. Go into the field now and then for a day of inspiration. Take a cue from Impressionists like Claude Monet whose joy in painting outdoors is captured in Monet Painting in His Garden (1873; oil on canvas, 18x23½) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir. GIFT OF CURT H. REISINGER; NATIONAL GALLERY OF ART, WASHINGTON, D.C.…

5 minuti
paris is for (art) lovers

I’ve visited Paris seven times, and it’s my favorite city in the world. In the late 1980s, when I made my break from graphic designer at an advertising agency to full-time fine artist, my wife and I had more flexibility for travel. At the time, my wife worked in the hotel industry and was able to get a complimentary room at any of the company’s international hotels. As a young married couple, it was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up. Because I was excited to explore the world of fine art and eager to visit the world’s great museums, Paris was an ideal destination. Although we visited other European cities as well, Paris was always a starting point or final stop before heading back to the U.S. These travels to Paris…

1 minuti
pack smart

Traveling light gives you the flexibility to change directions and plans, and hop easily on and off trains. My equipment list for a trip in which I don’t plan to paint en plein air includes a decent pair of walking shoes plus a small camera, a few large-capacity image cards, smartphone and an iPad mini. For plein air painting trips, I add a portable Edgmon easel. My selection of dark-, medium- and light-value pastels fits inside the easel, which fits inside a carry-on bag. I pack a Judson Outfitters tripod in my checked luggage. I also bring a paper assortment (Canson Mi-Teintes and UART 600 in 8x10, 9x12 and 11x14), along with a small drawing board cut from Masonite.…