Saturday, July 25, 2009
Arts and Kraft
A long time ago, shortly after the dinosaurs went extinct, but before these days of high-speed Internets and broadbanded ftp access, illustrators would physically ship original paintings to companies. I believe that paleontologists refer to this time as the Slowassic period, and I assure you… it was horrifying.
Back in those days, if I finished an illustration before pickup time, I would often take my still wet paints and do a quick study on the outside of the shipping box. I thought the shipping guys would take special care with the package if they saw an original piece of art on it. Well, it seemed better than writing fragile anyway. Most of them made it to the editors, but I have gotten a thank you from a couple of guys who worked in the mail room. I will not mention any names.
I always enjoyed working on that Kraft cardboard surface. It's a perfect color for rendering flesh tones, and that gritty paper structure was always brush friendly. For old times sake, I thought I'd pick up a pad of Kraft paper and see if it would get along with pastels as well. Borden and Riley makes a really nice one, 18 x 24 #840 Kraft pad. I found Nupastels didn't get really good adhesion and opacity in the lighter values, so I complemented them with Gallery semi hard pastels and select colors of Schmincke soft pastels. The combination of these three really allowed me to pile the pigment up on the paper. Especially the Schmincke, that stuff is like drawing with a stick of baby powder.