First pastel paintings (after my hiatus)

I actually wrote the blog intro section a few weeks ago, but didn’t post it until, um, I knew what I was doing with respect to the whole “blogging” thing.

So now I was cranked to see my easel all set up. Realizing I hadn’t used my pastels for several years, my first concern was, do they go bad? Dry out? Change color? That would have been a bit of a downer because they can be expensive – you don’t just buy a few for the basic colors and mix up all your own colors, as with oils. Well, for those of you wondering, the answer is “No,” they have great longevity. Yay!

My initial plan was to do a lot of fairly fast pastels – an hour or so each. I thought I could get looser, rapidly develop my style further. I’d wind up with a lot of paintings I wasn’t wedded to, but that would be okay. It was all about energy and diving in.

Went and bought a whole bunch of some not-so-expensive pastel paper, medium tooth, miscellaneous colors; chopped it into quarters. Chose some reference photos (hey, it was winter–I’m not standing outside developing frost-bitten fingers and toes!).

It’s been quite a few days now and I have to confess, I cannot stop after an hour. That’s when it’s getting interesting! That’s when I’m trying to make a painting work! It’s like, “Do a crossword puzzle and stop after an hour no matter what.” (I’m assuming you’re not a whiz and an hour just gets the easy words done.) They’re still smallish (say, 10″x12″) and quickish, but if I like the way one’s going, I’m not stoppin’! (Made for some very late nights.) 

Nuts. Now I actually like some of the results. Really, I can’t frame them all. 

BUT, lucky thing, I have a perfect place to display them – my brand new blog!

Grand Canyon, AZ

Grand Canyon, AZ


  1. Posted March 4, 2009 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    Lovely! You painted that?! You are delightful. My mother was a painter and I have some of her work in my house. I can’t draw stick figures so I admire talent like yours. Looks like you will have some fun with this 😉
    Papa Jack

  2. Posted March 5, 2009 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    That is a beautiful painting! That’s exactly what the Grand Canyon looks like – beautiful muted colors. You have captured the essence beautifully. You really do have talent. Keep it up.

  3. Posted March 6, 2009 at 1:14 am | Permalink


    Wonderful… That’s all I can say. Your attention to detail shows even in your art work, and it IS art! When I look at your Grand Canyon, I remember standing and looking at virtually that identical scene (don’t remember it being without hordes of people though… How’d you accomplish that?).

    Also love the theme! works very well with pastels 🙂 Keep on going and posting your work! And thanks for everything ELSE that you do!

  4. Posted March 6, 2009 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    Hi Joe- Thanks for your comment! It was easy to get the people out of there – I just threw a bunch of $100 bills over the edge and they went after ’em. Most made it back after they grabbed a few. The others, well….

    No, actually not. It was just a cool windy day in winter and it was not very crowded. I got lucky. (And you know, I could always choose to paint someone OUT! But often I do like including people in paintings. Adds some life.)

  5. Posted March 6, 2009 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    My My Sherry, what a gorgeous blog theme. You can tell it was selected by an artist. Oh, your painting is excellent also. Sorry, you can see what caught my eye first. I look forward to a return visit so I can stay a while an read everything. All the best.

    Bill Beavers

  6. Posted March 9, 2009 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Wow Sherry that is a beautiful painting. And you have picked an excellent theme for your site. I will be coming back often to keep up with you.

    Christopher Van Buren

  7. Posted March 15, 2009 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Absolutely beautiful theme and paintings Sherry. How wonderful. I look forward to seeing more.

  8. Posted April 8, 2009 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Wow! Nice work. I used to do most of my work in charcoals. I haven’t picked up my charcoal in years. tried again last week. I NEED a lot of practice to get back to the level I used to be. You are an inspiration!

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