So… the story goes like this: my 2020 goal was making a series of traditional works. And it tuned out to be more difficult than I initially thought. Sure, I could blame it on my lack of patience ( …I do the sketch in pencil. I scan the sketch. I finish it in Photoshop. I do a color sketch. I print and transfer the sketch to paper and by then I am already dead inside and have no desire to finish it), or I could blame it on the general weirdness of 2020 (I am an introvert, it’s not like I was doing a lot of going out… Still, I miss swimming). But I have decided to blame it on materials and spend the rent of the summer doing research on that. Cop-out? yeah.
These are all colored pencil on various primed cardboards, with a touch of markers and a touch of water-soluble Neocolors pastels (sigh. I should have bought the non-soluble ones). The ”various cardboards” are the direct result of me doing some cleaning and finding a stash of half-used materials from way back in uni.
Now, about the primer. The ”Grundierung” as Schmincke calls it. I had a hard time getting colored pencil/oil-pastels to stick to cardboard (the surface didn’t have enough ”bite”). I also wanted to use colored pencils on top of oil pastels, so I got the transparent primer. Well, it does what it says on the tin – it’s transparent if you don’t lay it on too thick, and yes, it seals the first layers of color and it dries to leave a rough surface, perfect for pastels and pencils. It also smudges any water based materials you might have used (the before-mentioned water-soluble Neopastels). And it never dries if you apply it to Sennelier’s gold oil-pastel, staying sticky forever. Now, the reason for the stickiness is… sigh again… it’s basically fancy wall-paper-paste (more toxic, sure, but the smell and the texture are the same).
Don’t get me wrong, I like the primer and have gone on a priming-spree on all the bits of colored paper I found laying around the studio. The only serious downside to it is that the primed surface is so rough it sandpapers the marker-tips (and I go through colored pencils faster, but the colors are brighter). I still have hard time controlling the level of detail, but I fear that’s on me and my legendary lack of patience.
So yeah. Image reference from Camillo Balossini. I am not unhappy with the last three.