Friday, March 30, 2012

Auction Preview Tonight at the NC Museum of Art!

Tonight is the Auction Preview at the NC Museum of Art!  It is a FREE event with live music and food (cash bar).  It runs from 5:30pm until around 8:30pm.  Come by and see the oil pastel painting that I donated for the 2012 Art of the Auction.   

Just off 64 from Jordan
All of the artists have donated their work, and proceeds from Art of the Auction benefit Museum exhibitions and education programs.  Today I was at the NCMA for their art program for preschool children, and I headed downstairs to see if all of the pieces were up.  I took a moment to snap a photo of my piece hanging in Section 2...

I was only there for a minute (try having a 2 year old in tow at an art museum), but the few pieces I saw were fantastic!   

I am going to be there tonight from 6-8:30pm, so I hope you'll stop by and see me!  It should be a beautiful evening to take a stroll around the museum grounds, too.  And if you haven't been to the museum in a while, be sure to head over to see main collection in the new West Wing.

See my Facebook event invite for more details or for the Museum website for directions/parking or more about the museum.

Hope to see you there!

Monday, March 26, 2012

WIP: Shady Spot

Here's a small piece I started today to take a break from a larger project. From photos I took last spring at the UNC Botanical Gardens.

Shady Spot
9" x 7"
oil pastel on board

It's so refreshing to switch gears!  I'll post an update when it's finished.

Friday, March 23, 2012

My First Encaustic Painting

This week I went to a demo at the Visual Art Exchange in Raleigh.  Sharon DiGuilio shared the techniques and materials behind the art of encaustic painting.  I've always wanted to learn more about this mysterious process, and it was so interesting to think about all of the different ways you can use this versatile medium!
My first encaustic painting!

Basically, encaustic paints are made up of beeswax, dammar resin, and pigment.  They must be heated and applied in a particular manner so that they fuse with each other.  You can create wonderful layered effects, combine them with collage and transfers, and use many other mediums to create unique paintings.  

I am particularly interested in incorporating oil pastel with encaustic paints or cold wax (a different medium altogether!).  This will be something to experiment with down the road.  

It was a wonderful evening of experimenting in a new medium. I was also excited to meet another artist whose works I have admired for a while now, Christy Robinson Pillow.  It is so nice to connect with local artists and have a sense of community.  Sometimes you need to get out and stretch your never know who or what you'll stumble upon!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Just off the Easel: Chocolate Lab Portrait

Here's a memorial pet portrait I've just finished...

8" x 10"
oil pastel on gray Colourfix
I may make a few more tweaks to the eyes once the pastel has another day to set up.  And of course I'll sign it!

I hope this brings back fond memories for his Mama.  It's so hard to lose a pet, but my wish is that my portrait will make the owner smile and remember their beloved friend.

Mordecai Park and Meet My Pastels

I've been working on the Mordecai Park painting (talked about here), and have some progress to share.  I'll begin introducing you to my pastel collection in this post, too.

Mordecai Park
22" x 30"
Sennelier oil pastel on Arches Cover

I've adjusted some proportions and am slowly filling the paper with color! I've been using my La Grande Sennelier oil pastels on this 22" x 30" piece.  La Grande pastels are eight times the size of Sennelier's smaller pastels, which is very nice when working large scale.

regular oil pastel versus the La Grande
buy them here

I am noticing that my 36 color set is lacking in some of my favorite shades from the smaller sized pastel.  Most noticeably I'm needing Sap Green 087, Violet Alizarin Lake 076, Sky Blue 226, and another White.  My white La Grande finally disappeared, as it's my favorite white oil pastel and it gets used so much!

I've had my precious La Grande set for 6 or 7 years.  It was my first major investment in oil pastels.  Since then I've been supplementing my collection with the smaller sized Sennelier oil pastels.  I've also been trying out Erengis and Gallery Extra Soft oil pastels, both of which are good to layer underneath the more creamy (and expensive) Senneliers.  To give you an idea of cost, individual smaller sized Sennelier oil pastels cost about $2-3 each and the La Grandes are about $7-8 each.  These are not your grade school pastels!

I'd love to add some Holbeins and Neopastels to the mix.  My dream would be to add a Holbein 225 piece boxed set, which includes 5 shades of each color.  They aren't making these anymore, so my time is wasting away before these will be all gone!
Holbein 225 piece set
If you're looking for more information on oil pastel brands, check out Robert Sloan's site.  He offers great reviews and information about oil pastel brands and materials.  I'll be sharing more about my experiences with oil pastels in future posts, so stay tuned!

Don't miss a post!  To get the latest posts delivered to your inbox, please enter your email address on the right side of this page under "Follow by Email".  You can also like Bethany Bryant Art on Facebook, where I share info between blog posts, news, and ideas for paintings.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

NC Museum of Art Auction Showcase

The NC Museum of Art has all of the pieces up on their website for the 2012 Art of the Auction.  See the Auction Showcase here.

Look for my piece (shown below) on the website:

Just off 64 from Jordan

I am so honored to be among many talented artists accepted.  There are about 160 pieces in the auction.   Read more about the event on the NCMA website.

Very nice to have my piece on the second row...  guess it pays to have "B" as a last name!

I hope you can make it to the Auction Preview coming up on March 30th.  Many of the artists will be attending, and I hear it is a large event for the Museum. See the Facebook event invite I created for more information and to let me know if you'll be attending!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Painting Local Landmarks: Mordecai Park

I've started what I hope will be a series of pieces based on local landmarks.  The first of these will be based on Mordecai Historic Park.

Here is the progress of the first piece:

  1. Reference picture I took with my Nikon D40
  2. Thumbnail sketch, about 5" x 7".  Note that I overlapped the left and center buildings.  The space between the buildings was distracting! 
  3. Begin painting on Arches Cover primed with clear Colourfix primer, 22" x 30."  Sketch/underpainting with Lyra water soluble pastels
  4. Current progress.  First layer of Sennelier and Erengi oil pastels.   

The next step is to go back and correct perspective, correct some layout problems, and lay down more color!  I'm kind of wishing that I had primed the paper with my favorite terracotta Colourfix pastel primer so that there were some pops of color peeking through.  But I think that the white ground will make for a brighter sky and white in the central building.

22" x 30" Oil Pastel on Arches Cover

Stay tuned for updates!  I have several other images from Mordecai that I'd like to paint, perhaps a bit smaller than this one.

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