Monday, March 21, 2011

Somerset Paper experimentation

pastel rubbed in for underpainting with pastel on top

pastel brushed with Turpenoid under pastel painting
Today I experimented with Somerset paper. I did four paintings, using different techniques to see what I thought about this pastel surface.

Per Loriann Signori's suggestion, I tried using a light pastel application washed over with Turpenoid for my under painting and then added more pastel on top. I liked the melting effect of the pastel into the paper, but the Turpenoid dried or absorbed so quickly into the paper, I did not achieve any washy, watery movement of color. Judging from the white paper showing through, I may have not applied enough pastel with my under painting to get the full effect of this technique. I will try it again.
Somerset is a hardy paper and seemed to handle my scrubbing and rubbing on it, as I did in the example at the top of this post. I did not observe any felting of the paper and I was able to put on many pastel layers (8 or more in some places). 

My least successful experiment involved a light pastel application washed with rubbing alcohol. I had a lot of warping and buckling of the paper from the alcohol and that made the dry pastel application later much more difficult to control. 

A good day for experimenting. I have some Twinrocker paper waiting some experiments next time!

11 comments:

Celeste Bergin said...

what a good experiment...I love the result! Looks frame-able!

Ralph said...

I love the end result but because you are talking about papers and mediums I am unfamiliar with I am just a bit lost. But as I say I love the effect.

Casey Klahn said...

Jennifer Evenhus first introduced me to turpenoid washes on Kitty Wallis' paper. The technique is to take a cheap brush and go over the sheet in an abstract manner - the pigment is hard pastel applied on its side.

Kitty taught me to do an actual underpainting (design or block-in) with pigment suspension.

My own technique has evolved (or devolved) into a direct application w/out underpainting onto la Carte, and frequently I overdo it and make use of a heavy "underpainting" of abstract colors. If I use Rives BFK, I will utilize the methods that Jen or Kitty taught.

I am itching to try the sketch book that Loriann suggested, in the direct manner that WK uses. Before I do that, I have some Bee paper and a number of Hannebuhle (spelled wrong) pads to try.

William Cook said...

I like that effect. I would guess it's hard to work with though--color-wise. What happens when it's dry? Do the pastels rub off because there's no binder in the turps? Will they still need to be sprayed, or are they stable? And won't the turps eventually rot the paper? I suppose Gesso would ruin the tooth. All in all it has some great possibilities!

I've been in a Bartok tunnel. His music and that of composers like him light me up. I've finished the Dogwood Collection commission, under his supervision. Finally! Thank you for putting me back in touch. That stuff is the very sound of painting for me, and always has been. It's like coming home.

I hope you know there are 187 art bloggers on their way for this Friday's boat ride and midnight soiree under the waning super moon. Ralph's bringing the vegetables--I'll take care of the burgers. \\///\

loriann said...

Hi Kvan, There is a nice feelign to your choice of colors in this one. As for Somerset paper, I always use it dry. I will rub in a pastel underpainting and fix it.Then I layer the pastel.
The Colourfix Suede is a good match to wet underpaintings, as is the old standbys Wallis and Uart. Love your experiments!

loriann said...

PS.Thank you for the mention!!!! I forgot to say that on my first comment...oopps!

Sarah Bachhuber Peroutka said...

Katherine, here is an artist I think you might like, and she's written a book about translating music to color. Will you send me your email address? (You don't need to post this on your blog.)

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Thanks, Celeste and Ralph. I love a good experiment, even if it down't have great results, the learning is always fun.

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Casey: isn't it fun to try what you're shown and then make it your own? I will try the turp wash with hard pastel on Wallis paper. That sounds like fun. I appreciate your spirit of curiosity with supplies and practice.

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

William: as far as I can tell, there's no problem with the pastels adhering to the paper, regardless of the underpainting. You're welcome with Bartok!

I will prepare to be boarded! I'm not sure we have enough life vests for 187 art bloggers, though ...

Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Thanks, Loriann. You always inspire me. I must have misunderstood about the turp wash on Somerset. Sometimes good things happen when things go awry. Back to the drawing board. What fun!