About My Process

After choosing my subject matter, I often play with the composition. Sometimes I can achieve what I want using a photo editing program. If that does not work, I cut up photograph pieces and portions that I want to swap out, and tape them all together. Yes, sometimes it’s a mess.

Then I transfer my edited photograph to museum board or drawing paper. My drawing may still be altered after it has been transferred to my paper. (See Picture 1)

I begin my piece using a light watercolor pencil under-painting in certain areas or start with lightly colored objects in the upper left corner of the piece.

Whichever way I begin, I slowly add more layers of color for intensity and shading. I think that using complimentary colors make the shading much richer. I alternate applying watercolor and non-watercolor pencils throughout. (See Picture 3, the beginning of color application in this section)

Mistakes can be removed with transparent tape or kneaded erasers if using pencils, and, sometimes, clean water with the watercolor pencils. I am careful not to overuse either method, for whatever I use, it will remove some of the fiber of the paper. I like to see my pencil strokes. Keeping my pencils very well sharpened helps this happen and gives me the control I need to bring out the details of the piece. (See Picture 4, the mostly completed section)

My colored pencil paintings take a long time to complete. I have logged 100 or more hours on many of them. When the piece is finished, I spray it one or two times with a good quality fixative.

MY FAVORITE EQUIPMENT:

  • Faber-Castell Polychromos oil based pencils
  • Caran d’ache Pablo top quality water-resistant pencils
  • Caran d’ache Supracolor soft water soluble pencils
  • Caran d’ache Luminance Pencils with smooth lead and exceptional brightfastness
  • Faber-Castell perfection eraser
  • Kneaded erasers
  • Staedtler erasers
  • Tombow MONO Zero elastomer eraser extra fine 2.3mm (for tiny areas)