Seaton artists enjoy pastel demonstration

PUBLISHED: 15:00 02 April 2016

Tony Hogan demonstrates his pastel painting

Tony Hogan demonstrates his pastel painting

Archant

Gregarious Yorkshire artist Tony Hogan entertained Seaton and District Art Society with a demonstration using pastels.

Born in Bradford, the second youngest of 12 children, he was raised by their poor widowed mother, who recognised his talent and encouraged him to study art.

Tony used a Cornish seascape photograph to demonstrate his preferred medium of pastel. He would much prefer to work outside with real landscape, but had to compromise for the demonstration.

His pastels are not the chalk-stick type familiar to most of us, but round and flat, arranged like water colours in a plastic tray. Unlike water colour, they are not applied with a brush, but with a sponge, called a soffit, attached to a plastic applicator, like a window-cleaner’s sponge on a stick, but much smaller.

There are so many colours available, but Tony thinks a limited palate works best - you only need six or seven at most.

Block in the big areas first and then switch to pastel pencils for tighter work and detail. Purple, indigo and blue look visually better for shadows, light to dark or dark to light. There is no right or wrong. If it works for you and makes you happy, do it, he said. And remember to protect the area you’ve done with a sheet of paper, or you’ll smudge it.

Pencil points always break, so how do we sharpen? Use a Stanley knife, slicing flat against the wood, but make the point by gently rubbing the exposed bit of pastel along a sandpaper block. You don’t need to fix your finished masterpiece. Pan Pastels do not smudge. But if you must do it, invest in fine art spray. Do not ruin a good picture for the sake of saving £2!


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