All of these works were done in the domain of tiny paintings called Artist Trading Cards (ATCs). This means that they never go over the size of 2.5 inches by 3.5 inches. And they were done with those fat crayon shaped sticks called oil pastels. (ATCs can be done in ANY medium.)
For years the oil pastel clubbed me over the head; nothing I made with them looked any better than scribbles a 3 year old could do. I was severely frustrated by the medium. Until… da da dummm … I took a workshop with Gary Michael.
Watching him, how easily he does what he does, made it appear simple! (You know, when an expert in any field does something, it always appears ‘simple’ ) But I paid attention, and this was the result. The following work is NOT an ATC; it’s dimensions, unframed, are 5″ x 7″. I entered it into an 2009 art show, where it netted me a First Place Ribbon in Landscapes!
I like oil pastel so much I continued to work in it, on my own. The next work I did was this one, of which I’m still very fond:
That one was done for an ATC swap, and so it now belongs to someone else. These next 4 were also done for that same swap.
(Forgive me, I’m still learning the WordPress way of putting in images.. my first try overlaid several. Second try stacked them like a deck. We’ll see if I can get them all in here without more mishap.)
This next one shows why Colorado was named as it was:
Next, another one I feel I should have kept. This one was very difficult and took me weeks:
Not done for a swap, I still have this one, framed up. It got me a Second Place Ribbon in the 2009 art show I mentioned above. I think I’d like to keep showing this one. For as small as it is and the size of the pastel stick, I think I got great detail and effect:
This piece has never been shown. It’s a 4×6, framed in a gold frame which complements it nicely.
This one, a 5×7 on masonite, is framed in a gold plein air frame.
Next up is an ATC, made for a trade. I had done this earlier in acrylic, and liked it, but love the brilliance of color the oil pastels gave to it in this version:
Next up, an ATC sized, framed up, Griffon Vulture. I liked this guy when I saw his image, and just had to see what oil pastel would do! He got me a Third Place Ribbon in that 2009 art show. (Yes, it was a good year for me!) So, he’s been shown but is still at home with me. Note the blues in his neck feather ruff:
This one is ATC sized and framed up. Didn’t get me an award, and have no idea why! I enjoy this one still. The title is a play on words: Tres Bien means Very Good, and Tres means Three (kinda ), which is how many bananas there are. Also, this is how I LOVE my bananas: a few spots, nice and soft but not falling apart nor fumy:
This one is a traded ATC, taken in part from the Afternoon Exercise piece above. A different take, a different exercise:
Made for a personal trade, I worked from a photograph of another trader’s husband and young son in a beautiful quiet moment. I need practice with the human form, obviously, but was happy enough with this one to send it on home:
Another traded ATC, this one was lots of fun, and I almost regretted trading it. These ATC sized works are great practice!:
An ATC sized work, this piece is framed in a plein air frame. I liked the starkness of the landscape: no tops to the trees, just the bare trunks; and the mountains in the distance, clouds in the sky for company. Feels peaceful to me. This one is still at home too:
Done for a swap, this ATC is also gone. I wasn’t sure how to work this one; it took longer than most of what you’ve seen so far!:
Done for the same swap, I did these next two from the same photograph, but from different crops. I liked both but decided to keep one. This is the one that stayed home:
And this is the one that was submitted to the swap, and went home to the trader:
For another swap, I did a series. Will eventually do a larger set in the series, same subject:
Second in the series. Can you tell I like tress?:
Done for the same swap and gone home to the trader:
This next one gave me fits. I was happy with it when I was done though. It looks very abstract, and yet, not. It went home to a trader:
I painted these pears, ate them and then sent the ATC into the swap:
Next up: Yeah, it’s pink. But sunsets sometimes do that, and I liked how it almost turned coral where it hit the yellow of the setting sun. This is the Mason Barn at Champoeg (pronounced shampoo – ey) Park in Oregon. An original structure at an historic registered site, the garden is sown with plants only grown during pioneer days. This painting is 11×17, done on pastelbord, and framed:
At 9×12.5, this painting is framed. At a show last year, it was second in the running for People’s Choice. (Didn’t get it though):
Wow. Until this posting, I had no idea how many works I’d done in oil pastel! I should have made it into two posts, at least.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the ‘show’; I’ll be posting more artworks in the future. I’ve many more to show off, though most are gone in ATC trades. That’s what the ATC world is all about!