Wednesday, December 2, 2009

White Madonna & Child Niche, Aix-en-Provence

two views of the 36" x 24" pastel-in-progress on Wallis paper

Experimentation is an important aspect of being an artist. I've made a start on the white Madonna and Child on a pastel surface that is new to me, Wallis paper, and I'm struggling a bit to get used to it since I'm learning that it has a more abrasive, less smooth texture than La Carte, and it doesn't 'grab' the pastel in the same way. I also wound up showing more of the Madonna than I had plotted out, simply because it was such a large sheet.

In reading about these two pastel surfaces, I learned that Wallis paper has an abrasive made with white aluminum oxide, while La Carte is coated with finely ground vegetable flake and cork, giving it a more velvety feel to the touch.

If can locate some La Carte tomorrow, I may start another version, cropped as originally planned. I'll probably give both versions a whirl until I see what feels the most comfortable to me for this subject matter.

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