My latest commission is another that has been in my order book for a while and was originally going to be a horse and rider as a gift to the lady who rides the horse, from her husband. Photos were sent through of the horse, William, on his own to be set within the local countryside. Firstly I cut the Murano pastel paper to just over 18 x 14" and sketched the outline of the horse and countryside behind. I blocked in the background colours concentrating on the form and colour of the farthest treeline from the top left to reduce the chances of smudging. I used a lot of blue in the shadows to create the illusion of perspective. As I got nearer to the foreground I started to introduce brighter, warmer coloured pastels and introduced black, brown and purple into the shadows. Next I blocked in the main body of the horse with a burnt sienna pastel and smudged it to get rid of the paper colour underneath. I created the form and muscle structure of the horse by carefully observing the colour variations where the light hits his coat. There is a surprising amount of blue and purple as well as a wide range of browns, yellows and peachy hues. I sharpened some pastel pencils to create the detail in his face which took a whole sitting as I used the pencil tips to carefully blend each colour for accuracy. When I was completely happy with William's face I added more subtle colours to his body before finally moving down to the detail in the field and his legs and feet. I've kept the background colours subtle and light so the horse stands out well from his surroundings. I hope I've captured him!
Merry Christmas (again)
2 months ago