Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A child's portrait in pastel

Pastel is a particularly lovely medium for creating children's portraits. It has a delicacy and softness missing in many others.
For this particular portrait I worked on Murano paper with a combination of pastel pencils and soft pastels. My initial drawing was done with willow charcoal and then dusted down.

I work on top of this with pastel pencils, which allows a certain precision. I blend with a combination of cotton buds and torchons.

More detail is added in the hair and mouth , still using the pencils. I begin to work soft pastels into the face and use them for blocking in the dress.

I now consider the background. The aim is to keep it soft and somewhat vague, simply in order not to detract from child.

Portrait and background are worked up in more detail and tied together. Below is the finished drawing.

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