I  know that it takes some guts to share your work, especially if you aren’t on solid ground, but trust me when I say that you won’t be sorry if you do. This website is a place of supportive, creative incubation. I won’t let it be anything else!

-Marla

Here Is my Apple I seam to blend to much do you have a way that I can not blend to much.
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Lesson 2: didn’t have wifi to follow along but had watched it previously. Since they were practice paintings I used my Canson touch paper for 2 of them, one is on la Carte and one on Uart 600. The purple ish one is a pic from Pixabay and had just bought Terry Ludwigs sunrise/sunset set so was limited in colors and value. The orange one is a pic I took in Syracuse NY and I only allowed myself 30 mins.
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Lesson 1, red apple on Uart 500 paper, 9X12 with mostly senellier pastels. Marla, I was in your FB group and asked for input on those Henri Roché pastels which I really don’t like so I used them for the background, yes I know the purple is a little offsetting but I have to use them when I can and since the cast shadow contained greyed violet I used one of my violet ish Roché as my dark foreground instead of a nice complementary greenish or even a yellowish one. Sorry for the eyesore
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Two takes on a Swiss scene, one with structure , one without. A redo of a previous submittal and my first animal painting.
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Hi Marla! Hope you are well! Here's three more for your review. I appreciate all of your comments and advise! All the best, Mark
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Hi Marla. Loving your lessons. I did my brothers barn but I’m not happy. It’s juvenile looking and muddy. Too many layers I don’t know just not great. I can follow a lesson but when doing my own I have trouble. It’s hard to describe. I used 12x12 uart paper for both with a rubber in underpainting. Various pastels. Ludwig. Gerault. Sennelier. Diane Townsend. Unison. I did the value study and cropped the photo and blocked in lights and darks. How do you get the dappled sunlight effect and avoid too many layers? I am determined to learn this medium. Thanks for your invaluable help!! Andrew.
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Oh boy, Marla. The follow along lesson piece ate my lunch. When I first did it, the clouds just didn't look normal at all. So, I kept trying and trying to get them right when I should have just stopped. I know its overworked. I know it has way too much product on the paper. I wanted to do it over, but I didn't have another piece of that terracotta colourfix. That terracotta colored paper was perfect for this. It really did contribute to the overall glowing atmosphere of the scene. So, I'm turning it in anyway knowing in advance most of what you are going to say. My second piece for Part 2 of the lesson I feel much better about, especially the sky, which is what the main focus of the lesson was about. I feel somewhat redeemed by it after the total frustration of Part 1.
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Do in Soft and hard Pastles
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A recent visit to Monet's Garden in Giverny provided inspiration for an explosion of painting ideas. The iconic bridge, the willows,the red shrub and water lillies were screaming for pastels!
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File 1 - 11"x11" Fall Color Follow Along Demo File 2 - 8"x10" Pastelmat - Siena File 3 - Glade Creek Grist Mill - 8"x10" Colorfix - Leaf Green File 4 - Glade Creek Gris Mill - Reference Photo
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9x12 440 grit sandpaper with Gesso tinted blue. I can see some patterns/similarity now that I've photographed it. Overall I'm happy with it, I didn't have any expectations when i started.
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Clouds have always seemed difficult because they seem really busy to me and I lose my way sometimes. I am ok with the first two, I think. I tried not to blend too much but i found it necessary in some areas. That is just the nature of clouds! The third painting is a picture I took from a cruise ship balcony at night which is a full moon with clouds over Cuba in the Caribbean. The last image is the photograph that I used as a reference. I love nocturnes and this seemed like a good time to try one. I realize that the focal point is in the center, but not sure how to change that. I thought the shape of the land mass might help offset it. Thank you Barbara
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From the flower lesson 5. I am learning a lot from Marla. She is wonderful. I am a hobbyist. I have been painting in acrylics for several years. Just starting in pastels and wanting to know if I am on the right track. How do you teach yourself to stop and not go too far. My main issue. Playing too much and creating mud....?
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I am new to pastels and enjoying Marla's instruction.
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Marla, I deviated a bit from the follow along lesson by using Inktense blocks to make an underpainting on white Pastelmat paper. It helped me a lot to get the airy effect in the red foliage. Otherwise, I stuck to the follow along. Then, in Part 2, I got a little gutsy by going with the foliage photo you provided that had the massive cast shadows under the trees. I was a little nervous about being able to pull it off, but I went for it anyway. I decided that I will never get better if I am afraid to step out of my comfort zone. I'm sure it could be better, but I did better than I thought I would. Thumbnails are included for both paintings. With the Part 2 painting, I used colored pencils to map in the colors in the thumbnail, because it was so busy, it was hard for me to distinguish some of the shapes and what they were supposed to represent. The coloration really helped.
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I choose a reference photo that has strong lines and also a swan family. This added to my challenge.I played with pink, cream, and blues to create harmony from top to bottom. The focus was another challenge for me to keep away from the center.
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And here is the Apple. Thanks so much. Andrew.
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Hi Marla. Not sure if here is where I ask you to look at these. I have painted in acrylics for several years as a hobbyist after work. I have been drawn to the beauty of pastel and want to master this. Here is the apple and pears from lesson 3. Please guide me. This is way more difficult than it looks. My tooth filled up very fast. Uart 600 paper 9x12. Thanks so much. You are so awesome. Andrew.
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I always fuss over water. I get concerned that it won't look real. When I stand back, though, it looks much better than up close. In the purple one, I kinda wish I hadn't tried to put in those sparse sprigs in the water near the foreground. I should have just left that alone. I guess since I am still a beginner, I try to put in more detail than I need to. I'm gradually learning to simplify.
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This was supposed to be pan pastel but don’t have. I improvised but not happy with results
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Hi all- Enjoyed learning the techniques for underpaintings. Struggled a bit with getting harmonious colors. The last one was a real disaster as I smudged it out and tried again, decided it was time to move on!
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HI Marla, Here's 3 more paintings. I'm trying to get at a minimum one done per week. Hope you are well. all the best, Mark
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Another fun lesson! I was skeptical on the bright colors but I like it now. Carole
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Marla, Here is my independent pastel study of a classic river. I used one of your reference photos. I am mostly happy with the results with this one. I'm not sure about the crazy blue marks that I added impulsively in the foreground, but it felt playful and fun! Thanks again for these great lessons! Maria
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Hi Marla, I finally getting back to posting some pastel studies after a busy month. Here is the pastel study of the follow along demo. I used Art Spectrum Colorfix paper in Elephant Grey. Thanks for another fun lesson! Maria
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winter storm lesson 7 in the 1 lesson library.Marla, I love your technique and abstract view of nature. Your paintings glow.
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From lesson 3- on Wallis 800 grit and Sennelier pastels
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Hi Marla, The submittal with the cliffs was a real challenge and I’m still not really satisfied. Originally, I did one on a square format and that really didn’t work! The one I submitted is a 9x12. I included the photo reference too. Maybe it’s better as a photo! The ocean scene was just a fun abstract style on dark Uart from a photo reference again. Thank you
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Marla, this is my last assignment! I enjoyed the lessons I keep following you. Kind regards from, Wies Heijboer- Warnders The Netherlands
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Marla, I enjoy all your videos, but I doubt my talent! this is my landscape.
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Hi Marla, this is my approach to afternoon break live lesson
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Hi Marla, Here's a cardinal and then a couple studies. One study where the goal was to use mostly red and green subjects, and the other to use yellow and purple. I'm still having trouble getting the photos to look like the paintings though. I'm using my Nikon 610 so I know the camera is good....I guess I will have to read up on how to photograph artwork....any suggestions? thanks, Mark
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Lesson 8 independant assignment.
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Hi Marla- This was a lot of fun! I used gamsol on demo and then decided to try a dark paper since I wanted to do a quick study without waiting for it to dry. I’ll try another with alcohol. Carole
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11” x 11”. Pastelmat with alcohol underpainting
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I spent more time on this than I planned but I just get caught up in the work and forget the time! I just love painting in any medium. I am submitting the actual photo and the finished work. I love watching you work and am learning so much from you.
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I want to do 10 paintings in all of the sunset image. I’ve got 8 done. Please feel free to give feedback. Would love to “hit a home run” by the 10th. I think my 5th is the best and my 6th the worse.....just when you think you have a handle!!!
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Videos

With each video, I invite you to consider an idea, an exercise, a musing to cultivate and enliven your painting process. If you are moved to share your results, that would be excellent! If they simply give you food for thought; wonderful! ​

I'm always looking for ways to motivate, tease, bribe, cajole myself to the easel, so I hope these videos help you to do the same!

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