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Blog archives: November 2010

“Fire and Ice”

Fire and Ice

18" x 18" - Wax-based Media (Colored Pencil, Artist Crayon, and Oil Pastel)
Created with the Icarus Drawing Board.

This is my latest work in my pebbles series - a very abstract approach to nature. I took this picture in my studio and I've had the hardest time balancing the colors correctly. I'm fairly satisfied with the results but as soon as I get a professional scan, I'll decide if this image will need to be replaced.

I've had a lot of fun with this project, the subject of which is a group of pebbles I collected on Moonstone Beach in Cambria.

It will be my entry for Explore This! 7, a Colored Pencil Society juried online exhibition which will be on display on the CPSA website for one full year, from February 1, 2011 through January 31, 2012.

Edit (10/24/10): you can read about the specific technique I used for this artwork on a previous post titled A Shortcut for Details.

 

Icarus Art YouTube Channel

Icarus Art is now on YouTube. The first series of video clips is a short introduction to the Icarus Technique and the Icarus Drawing Board. You can see how I organize my workstation and how I use some of my favorite tools.

I have also posted a video on how to create a monotype with the Icarus Board.

This is just the beginning. I will upload more videos soon.

 

Betzi Stein

Meet Betzi Stein, Los Angeles-based colored pencil artist who came to my studio for a visit after becoming a devoted user of the Icarus Drawing Board. In addition to colored pencil, she also paints and does collage.  A professional massage therapist and portrait artist, she is an avid violinist, a long-term meditator and has a background in jewelry design and sculpture.  She has always been drawn to portraying the human figure in all her artistic endeavors.

Betzi SteinMassage Series 1

 

http://www.betzistein.com/
http://www.betzisteinmassage.com/

 

A Shortcut for Details

I'm working on a very detailed pebble piece. I'm combining Prismacolor colored pencil, Neopastel oil pastels & Neocolor artist crayons on Colourfix paper. I'm eager to show you a small (2"x2"), abstract close-up of my painting (18"x18") and explain the shortcuts I've taken to get around all the details.

1. Photo Cropping2. Line Drawing

 

1. This is a cropping of  the original photo. Even though it's very blurry you can still see all the intricate details.

2. On my line drawing I focus on the essential lines and not the confusing details.

3. Blocking-in Colors4. Melting

 

3. On the cool zone I block-in the colors with a combination of oil pastels and artist crayons.

4. I move my artwork to the warm zone of the Icarus board (high temperature) and melt all the colors with a color shaper. The waxy pigments settle into the hills and valleys of the paper, leaving plenty of texture for further layering.

5. Preparing Eraser6. Lifting Color

 

5. I'm preparing my Sakura battery-operated eraser by cleaning and flattening the tip on sand paper.

6. Here you can see how easily the pigment is lifted from the surface. By using the flat edge of the eraser point, I can achieve a very fine line.

7. Lifting Color8. Finishing

 

7. I lift all the waxy pigments until the white of the paper shows through.

8. I can now develop the colors and values and finish the details with colored pencils. During this phase I lower the Icarus Board temperature to a medium setting.

This shortcut allowed me to work from "large" to "small" without getting bogged down in details too early in the process.