18 3/4″ x 24 3/4″
This Scene in Leawood, Kansas caught my attention because of local comment. The sky was powerful, the foreground simple, solid and expansive; an exciting picture in itself. However, its future would be a giant, sprawling shopping center. Kansas has begun to disappear. This is “heads up” country for landscape painters. The sky and earth are perfectly attuned. Being unable to return soon, this was my last chance to depict this bit of countryside unspoiled.
I usually use the smooth side of the pastel paper. It seems to hold all the pigment and provide the density I need. Using harder pastels to block in the composition, then softer varieties to develop depth and finally detailing. The smooth surface satisfies my need to move the pigment directly with my fingertips, sculpting the image in a very personal way. Some subjects demand a heavier tooth, but I resist having the pigment grabbed away from me before I am ready.
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