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.
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!
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.
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.
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:
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.
Ah, she’s starting to look like Violet now! Here she is with a few more layers in both media:
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.
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:
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
Thank you Heidi!
Unfortunately, one of the wounded from last week’s Great Feline Attack was Rumble Strip, the star of my recently finished racehorse diorama. Not only did he break off from his acrylic rod and the diorama base, but he also suffered some damage to his finish.
I am not confident using acrylics to paint a whole model or really achieve any shading, but at least I can do some discrete color matching to fix these boo-boos.
First I identified which brown shades would go into his repair. Then I set about mixing and matching colors to find which matched his damaged spots. The nice thing about acrylics is that you can remove them from the horse with water and a cloth or paper towel if the color doesn’t work- as long as you do it right away. So I could mix a color and test it on a spot without doing further damage to the original finish work.
I needed some darker colors to mix the right shades and to fix the marred spot on his tail. It worked, although I squeezed the bottle of Charcoal a bit too hard…
Happily, it didn’t take too long to fix up the damage. He certainly isn’t LSQ, but he wasn’t before either- and now he’s back to his lovely presentable self.
Attaching him back onto the base was relatively easy. All I needed was super glue with a fine tip and a bit of patience. It’s not as neat as before, but I might be able to file down some of the excess glue- once I’m positive that it’s thoroughly dry. And now the race horses are back on the shelf where they belong.
Alas, the other repairs will not be quite as simple.