Pastel Sketch: Coral Sunset

"Coral Sunset" pastel on self-prepared board, 11" x 8" © Bernadette E. Kazmarski
“Coral Sunset” pastel on self-prepared board, 11″ x 8″ © Bernadette E. Kazmarski

Last February I caught a surprise winter sunset and shared photos in “I Chased A Sunset”.

…and it disappeared over the edge
and took a piece of my soul with it.

Really, on the way home from a quick errand to a shopping center I encountered a stunning winter sunset just beginning to color and decided to take a detour through a local park to see it in progress. All I had was my smartphone which doesn’t handle colors and contrasts at all well, but decided I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. The sunset had me racing over acres of the park which is on a ridge over a valley, just the perfect setting to watch the sun drop below the far horizon with both trees as a foreground, and then nothing but sky.

I love the images as photos in all their native color and intricacy, but I’ve also wanted to paint a few. I did not take the time at all last year, but this year, this month in fact, I’m participating in Leslie Saeta’s 30 Paintings in 30 Days (30/30) Challenge for 2016—that’s 30 works of some sort, one for each day of the month. I decided that was as good a reason as any for me to get out some panels I’d prepared with different pastel grounds and paint a few of these during these 30 days.

I didn’t want to create a masterpiece right now this minute and decided on a simple theme. I used my basic box of pastel pieces, the one I take out in the field for quick sketches so if they all get dumped in a creek it’s kind of okay, in part because I wanted that authentic feel of using a limited palette. Also last year I purchased a number of pastel grounds when I couldn’t purchase my regular pastel paper and painted them on 8″ x 11″ Richeson hardboard panels, which had been the wrong size for a project but perfect for this. The ground for this panel was Golden Fine Pumice in a clear gel, and it seems two coats of the stuff is a good base for the mix of pastels I have in this box—from the softest melt-in-your-fingers to hard Nupastels.

I’m looking forward to more sketches this month. They won’t all appear here—yesterday I did a sketch including all my foster cats and kittens from 2015 and published it on The Creative Cat.

See other pastel paintings and original art. This painting and others are for sale, please ask if you are interested.

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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.

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