Tag Archives: bay

Cold Snap

I was really looking forward to getting home and enjoying some hobby time, but weather and life had other plans. We came home to a freakish cold spell- the coldest it’s been in Oregon in my lifetime. Since cold can wreak havoc on primer and fixative, I’m limited in what I can work on.

To add to that, I can home from California with a bad case of poison oak- so bad that my whole face swelled up and one eye was swollen shut! So my downtime pretty much involved lying on the couch icing my face. Luckily, I also got some steroids to take so I was feeling (and looking) better pretty quick.

I was jonesing for some hobby time in general, but I also wanted to get back to work on the portrait horse I’m making for my trainer. I base-coated him in acrylic and I decided to try doing a bit of pastel on him and see how the fixative behaved in our freezing temperatures.

Adding pastels

Adding pastels

I figured that if the fixative did go wonky, I would only need some sanding and another coat of acrylic to get him back. Luckily, the fixative worked pretty well, so I was able to make a lot of progress on this guy.

After a few layers in

After a few layers in

At first I made him a little too red, but I was able to back it out a little and I think I got the nice red bay I was going for. I did several layers of pastel over a weekend to get his body color where I wanted it, and I’ve been using my free time on weeknights to work on his acrylic details.

Working on his intricate blaze

Working on his intricate blaze

Ducky is a somewhat challenging horse to do a portrait of because he has a very intricate blaze, and even his leg markings have pretty unique edges. I’ve been doing a lot of layers followed by buffing.

Duckys blaze

The temperatures are still mostly below freezing, but they’re supposed to come back to the usual 40′s later this week. Even with my success (and/or luck) with fixative on Ducky, I don’t want to try doing primer, or spraying fixative on a grain-prone color like palomino. So those projects will have to wait.

Detailing his markings

Consulting my notes while working on details

But I’m sure glad I was able to make progress here! Hopefully I’ll be gifting this little Ducky next week.

Furry Foal Friend

Well, I haven’t been very good about keeping up the blogging. Things have been busy, as predicted- Friday was my twelfth straight day of work. I’m enjoying this weekend immensely. Believe it or not, I hope things will get busier soon- because that will mean we’ve bought our dream condo, which even has a little room for me to use for crafting.

I’m attending a little live show next weekend. It’s all halter, which is good because I can’t even be tempted by lofty performance goals. I’ve got my class sheet drawn up so I won’t miss classes. I even managed to get one of my in progress ponies finished in time to show!

This is Kaylee, a First Draft resin (Mary Osedo) in bay sabino. She’s about stablemate scale (1:32). She’s about 95% done here- she still needs more layers of fixative and painted and glossed eyes. But I’m confident I can get that done by Friday, if nothing else.

kaylee - 1-20-13

Finished Gifts

Things have been pretty quiet around here. I’m finished my crafty gifts and don’t have a lot of motivation to start more crafts, or blog. I think part of the reason I’m not as motivated to blog is that I’m using WordPress all day for work, so it doesn’t seem quite as much of a down time activity.

I was very happy and proud to deliver both my portrait of Violet and my 1:48 scale Dr. Who to their recipients. I added pictures of the finished portrait to my Bay & Black gallery.

The wee Dr. Who is at home in his terrarium, exploring what really does look like an alien planet. He looks so good, I’m so happy I decided to make him!

terrarium who 01

terrarium who 02

I’m not sure what my next project will be, but it will definitely be after the new year. Soon I’m off to California to celebrate Christmas, and I don’t see any hobby time happening before January at the earliest. I hope you all have lovely, safe, happy and warm holidays.

Tis the Season

I’m back from New York and working hard on the several handmade gifts I’m doing this year. I usually do a mix of homemade and bought gifts, depending on time, ideas, and general motivation. One thing I’m making this year is a portrait of my friend Liddy’s new horse, Violet.

violet portrait pix - right

Just before I left for Thanksgiving, the model was starting to move from the awkward early pastel layers to at least the vicinity of realism. She has a ways to go, but I’m feeling confident that I’ll have her done in time for Christmas.

Here’s Violet after about 5 layers of pastel:

violet progression 01

At this point I was having trouble visualizing her because of the white primer mane and tail, so I switched from pastels to acrylics for a bit. I always find that useful for the final pastel stages because it helps me see where how the colors will look on the finished horse.

violet progression 03

Ah, she’s starting to look like Violet now! Here she is with a few more layers in both media:

violet progression 02

I’m pretty pleased with how she’s turning out. She’s a gorgeous horse, and while I know I can’t do her color justice I at least want to achieve a resemblance of her beautiful coat. I think I’m getting there- she needs a number of layers in both pastel and acrylic, but I’m relieved to have her looking at least vaguely Violet-like by early December. Hopefully by the end of this weekend she’ll be even closer to done.

Pastelling a Bay by Heidi Reaves

In a thread on Model Horse Blab Heidi Reaves mentioned that she had an album of progression pictures for pastelling a bay. She was kind enough to send me a link along with these helpful tips, and kinder still to allow me to share them here. Be sure to check out all her amazing work on Picasa. This is the lovely medallion she made:

Heidi writes,

Here’s a link to my stages of doing a bay. This is just standard. With more red you want to continue to add reddish browns, with more seal bay, you want to cut the red and go with sepia and black, with a lighter bay you want to stop early when you first get the look you want. Maybe layer more of the same color, but don’t go further. With sooty or dark bay, you want to layer black. It may be best to get black pastel instead of pigments. They may be too stark. If all you are working with is pigments, then go slow and don’t add too much of the color at once. Pigments tend to be more pigmented then pastels. There are advantages to using them, since they are so strongly pigmented but they can get too strong to fast too. So it’s best to work slow and with lighter layers.

It’s good to know color theory. What makes what color. The more you experiment the better you get at knowing. Burnt Umbers are made with adding reds and greens. Burnt Siennas=blues and oranges, Yellow Ochre=yellows and violets. With different amounts of these you get different ranges of the colors. Adding a little black will make a shade, adding a white will make a tint. Like Naples Yellow. A good horse color, and it has white in it. I think it’s a Raw Sienna=burnt sienna + white, put into white. But it could be a very light yellow ochre put into white. When mixing colors always mix the strongest colors in small amounts to the weaker color, until you get what you need. I haven’t actually tried to make Naples Yellow yet, I’m just guessing.

I actually added more to the muzzle, but haven’t taken a new photo yet.

Making a bay, with descriptions

Finished product

Thank you Heidi!