I love my colored pencils. They’re not messy. The colors are amazing. And I love that I can be super detailed in my work. BUT – I miss the abstraction I achieved with acrylics. I feel that “photo realism”, while amazing, is just not me. I’m more emotional, silly, some might even say scatterbrained. And I like that part of my to show in my art. So I’ve been slowly working toward that in my colored pencil pieces by adding more color.
Recently I began experimenting with Gamsol, orderless mineral spirits, to blend the colored pencils. And it is SO amazing. I am finding how well it works depends on the paper. It seems you need the paper to have a little tooth. Canson Mi-Teintes works really well. One of my fellow artists on Facebook says she using this technique on canvas! I haven’t tried that yet. I do have a wood panel that I am planning on trying next, so we’ll see.
This is the first piece I tried – totally abstract and from my imagination. It is 8″ x 10″ and I love how bright the colors stay. The Gambol does not wrinkle the paper and once completely dry, there’s no residue on the back of the paper.
On the second piece, I decided to see how well the technique worked on something more realistic. My goal is to create something recognizable, but with expressive strokes and colors. Using the Gamsol to lay down colors initially really helps my creative process.
Both of these pieces were created on Canson Mi-Teintes pastel paper. I am also working on an illustration for a book cover that’s on a smooth mixed-media paper. The Gamsol is not as effective on this surface.
My goal now is try this on different surfaces and see what works and what doesn’t. I think it is going to be a great way to spark my imagination and creativity.