One of our members Kimberley sent in her husky picture for some advice and feedback. Kimberley writes:

Hello Steve and Colin

First, I’ve been wanting to ask, will Colin use Pan Pastels with his Tutorials in the future?

Second, I completed a new drawing not long ago and would love some feedback on it, its a friend’s dog ( Alaskan Klee Kai ) on Light Green Pastelmat with the Faber Castell Pastel Pencils.

I guess the most challenging part is always the white areas on the face around the eyes and muzzle. I have troubles trying to add shading to the fur.

Cheers, Kimberley

Help with Pastel Backgrounds, Shading and White Fur over Dark

To listen or read the advice see below:

Advice on the Fur

One of the things you mention is you are having a problem putting a white on top of the darker colours. Well that’s always gonna be a problem. The key to this though is put the lighter colours on first, add the dark colours afterwards what you’ve done is you got it on top. Now sometimes you see me do that, but generally speaking I’ve worked from the light to dark aspects so play with that a bit because that will help you on that. It certainly would help you when it comes to the area between the eyes and the nose that kind of “t section” of dark. It tends to look as though it’s been stuck on there rather than actually blended into the fur. And if you’d done that again by putting the light on then the white fur around it and then use a dark grey or a mid grey probably would be better on the mid-greys. 

We have 273 or 233 either of those would have worked by putting that on first and establish the the “T” I call it a “t section” that you got there and then blended that in with the white so that you have a transition between round the edges then put the darker colours on, I’d have used 181 first of all I think there and then you can use the very dark colours perhaps a black but by the time the black goes on you got quite a good cushion of colour so it should work very well.

We’ve got quite a lot of this kind of thing coming up on our members site keep an eye out. We already have some so it might be worth looking back on some of those, the black and white spaniel is one of them that would have helped you there. Now the other problem we have and I can see why you would have a problem with it is the nose.

The Nose

The nose looks as though it’s coming forward. In other words the nostrils are forward they’re both evenly spaced. Now that dog is looking slightly to the left or our left and you have to make the allowance for that. So the right hand nostril would be just a little larger. The left hand nostril (as we look at it) would have been a little narrower, and that would have made the proportioning slightly better.

The Background

The background is something that I always like people to do and I understand that you contacted Stephen asking if Pan Pastel will work. I can’t really answer that because I’ve never used it. I did try once I got some and give it a go and I never liked it at all because I’m used to the pastel pencils, the polychromos and the soft pastel and I prefer to use those but I am all for one for trying. If you wanna give it a go give it a go.

I try to use the pastel pencil first of all it’s harder and certainly with pastelmat you have to work a little harder but you’ve got to keep at it you’ve got to put a good layer of pastel pencil on then you can use either the polychromos if you’ve got them or soft pastel which are easily obtained. You can put that on top of the pastel pencil that works quite well. Pan Pastel I can’t help you with in as much as I haven’t used it and probably wouldn’t need to use it but a lot of people do and a lot of people had success with it so I’m not going to stop you from doing it, give it a go.

It’s certainly the background if you do put it on would have helped you with the fringe right at the bottom where you’ve signed your name Kimberley. That tends to look a little bit false if you haven’t got anything to work into but if you’ve got a background that could work into the background. We got lots of examples on our members site where I have showed how this is done and I’m sure you’d be able to look from that. It’s only the fringe on the bottom as it stands at the moment it could be misconstrued that you cut the head off you know it to that kind of impression a love the idea of that but I do like it to melt into the surround.

I suppose you could do it with not putting a background on but it’s not very easy to lose that fringy bit that you’ve got. I don’t take it away from the picture you’ve done a good job but keep at it. Pastelmat’s not easy to use as you know it’s not easy to erase if you  make a mistake. I like it I think it’s great. I like it equally as much as I do the Ingres now but I do still use both.

So I hope that’s all helped you. And I look forward to seeing you more of your work later on.

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By | 2018-10-17T15:46:35+00:00 October 17th, 2018|Animal Tips, Picture Feedback|0 Comments