Aaand...sixty paintings DONE!

Just in time for the Art Crawl (see previous posting) I finished the last six of my series of sixty "Beach Bits" paintings. While I set out to complete sixty of these as a recognition of my having turned sixty this year, I suspect there may be more yet to come. I am still enjoying each and every one, and continuing to learn from the process. Here they are...

 Testing the Waters pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

Testing the Waters pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

 Daring the Tide pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

Daring the Tide pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

 Wait Up, Mama! pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

Wait Up, Mama! pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

 Days of Wonder pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

Days of Wonder pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

 By the Deep Blue Sea pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

By the Deep Blue Sea pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

 Standing His Ground pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

Standing His Ground pastel 8 x 8 framed $195

What have I learned?

  • to plan the counterpoint of values in the composition (dark against light, light against dark) before beginning to paint
  • to consider the effect of colour choice, using equal value complements (blue/orange; red/green; yellow/violet) for maximum glow
  • to PLAN everything first, so that the first coat of pastel is correct and can remain--multiple coats result in muddiness and a loss of the sparkling clarity I was seeking in these works
  • to vary the placement of figures within the confines of the composition--sometimes very near the top, bottom, side or even "dead" centre can be the right place, depending upon the stance and attitude of the figure(s)
  • to sometimes work on new colours of paper--for these works, I discovered that a dark navy blue paper created a nice texture and contrast with the bright/light beach colours

I will continue to do commissions of "kids on the beach" in this style.  Here are three I recently completed:

 Katie's Choice Collection P. Allen

Katie's Choice Collection P. Allen

 Dune Buddy Collection P. Allen

Dune Buddy Collection P. Allen

 The Young Naturalist Collection P. Allen

The Young Naturalist Collection P. Allen

I'm considering a new series of children on the slopes--skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, building snowmen--I guess a few photo trips to Dakota Ridge (the closest place that has snow in the winter) will be needed.  Or perhaps I'll try to arrange a photo shoot at a local dance school and pay homage to Degas with a series of pastels of young children practicing their ballet postures. Inspiration galore!