Horse and wildlife art by Mona Majorowicz.

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The Trouble with White is...

White, while easier than doing black has its own challenges. In watercolor it is easy for you to just let the white of the paper show through which gives a luminous effect. It is one of the things that makes watercolor paintings so stunning.

Yellow, violet, and rose colored hues of Unity
Colored Hues Within White

Water soluble pencils, however are not the same as watercolor. And when laying in color there are marks made by the pigment. Though much of it lifts when the wet brush is applied, there are still traces of the original pencil marks that show. In most colors, that gets hidden by layering. With the pencils, small areas of white were actually fun to do. But great expanses of white, such as an all white horse were quite daunting. Even with a very careful application of pencil, there was often marks left and the color could sometimes look uneven.

Oil pastel is completely different and I am enjoying experimenting with whites. In this painting I am using loads of yellows, violets and rose colored hues to add a soft glow to the mares. I find myself much braver with color usage in oil pastel because it is so easy to put in.

Oil pastels are slightly transparent which makes blending colors interesting. The white of the board adds a luminosity to the colors when in direct light and a painting can glow. I learned the hard way to work with my drafting table lights off. Otherwise, a piece may look spectacular on the table but may be flat and lifeless on the wall.

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Text and original graphics copyright © Mona Majorowicz, 2000-2018.
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