October 05, 2009

Why Use Colored Pastel Paper?

I love, love, love different surfaces to paint on and a variety of them to choose from is an important factor for me when trying to plan for the best outcome for a painting. While posting this painting, “Return Ever Safely,” I was thinking about what an important role the color and texture of the paper can make in the outcome of the piece. The paper I chose for this is Sennelier La Carte Light Grey. The name of the color is deceiving because in reality, it is a nice warm brown tone. I chose this color because I wanted that color to dominate the painting. I also chose Sennelier La Carte paper because it has a wonderful sanded surface that enables the pastel to just skim the surface and that’s just the look I wanted for the driftwood highlights. I stayed away from the buttery-soft pastels because I wanted the brands that would tend to sit on top of the sanded surface. I therefore chose primarily Unisons and Diane Townsends to get the effect I was after.

11 x 14 pastel
a bit more about this painting...
The swallow was often the first sign sailors saw when approaching land and, as such, they became a symbol of hope and, later, one of honor. They were so revered by sailors that after sailing five thousand miles a sailor would have a swallow tattooed on his chest to proudly display his ability to weather many storms at sea. After ten thousand miles a second swallow-tattoo would be added to the other side of his chest.

I was reminded of this legend while visiting our nearby beach on Whidbey Island (Washington). I saw this swallow resting on a stump of driftwood and wondered if it was beckoning to a certain sailor in the nearby ocean.

Purchase information is available on my website.

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