Sunday 5 November 2023

Golden Gate Bridge - A watercolor painting on Chitrapat handmade paper

 “ Watercolor condenses time and consolidates experience.” Frank Marcello

 PIXABAY is a free stock photography and royalty free stock media website. It is used for sharing photos, illustrations and a lot more, under the custom PIXABAY License, which generally allows the free use of material with some restrictions. I personally enjoy browsing through this site for some interesting reference photos of places that I haven’t visited so far but would love to paint them anyway.

I have already painted the “Golden Gate Bridge” ( “A suspension bridge that connects the San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. ) on earlier occasions but the photo that I found recently caught my eye mainly because, it had quite a different composition as it was an evening scene and also captured the cars racing across the bridge. This scene looked a bit challenging as I decided to use the watercolor medium and had to capture the racing cars, which were going to be gestural strokes and not too much of details. 

I finally painted it on Chitrapat handmade paper using my usual Winsor and Newton Cotman and Camlin Artists water color tubes. 

After having completed a painting, every artist looks back and reflects on the entire process of creating it. I do the same. I haven’t painted this kind of a scene before and by the time I completed it, I was happy. Trying something new and different is always very exciting. It motivates you further to pursue the journey. 

Watercolor painting of Golden Gate Bridge on Chitrapat handmade paper

The Golden Gate Bridge
A water color painting on Chitrapat handmade paper 
Size 4” X 5”

Golden Gate Bridge from PIXABAY

The Golden Gate Bridge 

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Friday 11 August 2023

“Beach Reflections” A soft pastel painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper

 “ Limitless and immortal, the waters are the beginning and end of all things on earth.” Heinrich Zimmer

Somewhere in December 2019, I was at Bogmalo beach ( Goa ), with family to attend a marriage function. Little did we know of what was in store for us in the coming months. And then in 2020, Covid struck and all traveling came to a halt for a long long time. Therefore this beautiful beach is a reminder of the pre covid carefree era, when I took out time one early morning to walk along the shoreline and capture some lovely photographs which I planned to paint later at leisure. 

Today’s soft pastel painting of an early morning scene at Bogmalo Beach is one of the many paintings that I have created in the recent times. What I loved a lot in this particular capture is the reflection of the distant hills reflecting on the water reaching the shoreline. 

Soft pastel painting of Bogmalo beach on Canson Mi Teintes paper

“Beach Reflections”
A soft pastel painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper
Size 5” X 7”

Like in any typical soft pastel painting, I have used Canson Mi Teintes paper and my usual Mungyo, Kohinoor Toison Dor and Sennelier pastels. These pastels work great in combination and as of now I am pretty content with my collection and do not wish to add any more.

If you wish to see some of my latest artworks you can visit my Instagram site wherein I post my works more regularly. Thank you for browsing through my blog. 🙏

Friday 3 February 2023

Step by Step, soft pastel forest landscape ( Coorg, Karnataka )

 “Perfection is no small thing but is made up of small things.” Michelangelo 

Of late, I have been pretty busy with my water color paintings but I do miss working with soft pastels. So took out some time recently and created this forest landscape referring to my photo taken at Coorg, Karnataka. 

I have used the following brand of soft pastels as:

1. Camlin
2. Mungyo
3. Gallery

Each of these brands have their own qualities and together they work great for me. If I have to recommend one brand to buy as a set for the beginners, I would suggest set of 48 soft pastels by Kohinoor Toison Dor. These cylindrical sticks are absolutely soft on the paper and work wonders. Moreover they are economical too. As far as paper is concerned, I mostly go with Canson Mi Teintes as I find it economical and it has sufficient tooth for taking in two layers of pastels. I normally finish my work in two layers and additionally do a little touch up in the end using the extra soft Sennelier pastels.

soft pastel landscape painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper

“ On the way to Coorg”
A soft pastel painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper
Size: 7” X 9”

I have visited Coorg several times in the past and every time I am there it feels absolutely amazing. There is something magical about the nature vibes. It rejuvenates you to the core.

The Steps involved in creating the above artwork

Step 1.  Created a faint basic outline of the major shapes using a light coloured 
soft pastel pencil and later used the Mungyo and Kohinoor 
soft pastels to paint the respective tonal values keeping
in mind the source of light, and the shadows.

Step by step soft pastel painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper

Step 2. After the first layer of color application ( using soft touch, as Canson Mi Teintes
cannot take in too many layers of colors ), I blended the colors 
on the paper using my finger tips to cover up the underlying
black shade of the paper. 

soft pastel landscape painting on Canson Mi Teintes paper

Step 3. After the first layer was painted and blending is complete, I carefully began with 
the background sky and slowly worked my way towards the forest 
trees and other elements as I progressed downwards towards 
the foreground. I used Kohinoor soft pastel pencils to create
the fine branches, and other details ( mostly in the
middle ground ) 

The reference photo taken at Madikeri ( Coorg, Karnataka )

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