Building Contrast in Pastel Pencil Landscapes

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One of our members Brian sent in his picture of the “Country Walk” landscape project on our website. He requested some advice on how to improve the picture and as a member, he can send in his artwork for feedback and tips. Brian writes:

Hi Steven,

I did a picture of Colin’s picture of a country walk but I decided to try and do it much larger, my picture is 10 x 14 done on your Ingres paper and I’m going to frame it in a 14 x 18 frame, here is my finished piece.

I would very much appreciate Colin’s opinion on my pastel painting and were he thinks I could have improved it , I think it turned out rather well??



Building Contrast in Pastel Pencil Landscapes

To listen or read Colin’s advice, see below:

Hi Brian. Steve showed me your picture of the country walk and I compliment you on it – it’s really good. To blow it up to A3 size is quite a challenge. However what you have done of course here is you reduced it. I’m looking at it as smaller than A5 on my my iPad which looks great because when you reduce something it always looks a little better but I suspect that on the large side although you’ll be very happy with it you’ll find certain parts of the picture don’t really click and I’ll pick two parts out of it for you.

One is the sheep. If you look at the sheep and you look at my picture you’ll see that what I’ve done I’ve made the grass or the meadow behind the sheep (particularly the ones on the left hand side) I’ve made the grass stronger or the meadow colours stronger.

This in turn when you put the sheep in if you put the sheep in as you have done they would become too light so you think okay well they’re too light so I’ve got to darken them so you would have to darken them and that would bring the contrast in much better. And this is something that you could practice on other things.

The other part of it I would like pick up is right in the centre where you have that cops by the fence where you have that intense colour. Now here again it’s more or less the same tone right through. You’ve just got little spots of colour in there. Well if you look at the picture that I’ve done and you look at the picture in real life you’ll see that there’s much more contrast in that. So this is another area where contrast can be an advantage.

And what I would have done simply there is just a little bit more – you’d have to more light in there or the mid-tone colours and then put the strength into it. But this is something be honest that you could gradually work towards – as you do more pictures you could just start intensifying the strengths.

You heard me mention many many times about contrast and the contrast is what gives you the dimension. So you’re looking at a three dimension but I’m not going to take it away from you, you have done a really good job. And as you say you’re pretty happy with it so therefore I think you should move on to the next one with a lot of confidence. I hope all this helps.

By | 2018-11-20T15:38:48+00:00 November 20th, 2018|Landscapes, Picture Feedback|0 Comments