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Tara Humphreys
Tara Humphreys • 2 years ago

A TREE GROWS (ART PROJECT) 1.  First I draw my image, and colour it in with oil pastels.  My favourites are Caran d'Ache neopastels, because they're beautifully soft and pigment rich, but there are many other great brands available.  The bits that will be painted in acrylics later I leave bare, because acrylic over oil pastel is against all the rules, and well... just doesn't work too well. 3.  I use an embossing tool (or the pointy end of a knitting needle when I can't find the embossing tool!) to scratch into the oil pastel.  I wipe the excess off the end of the tool as I go. Just go all the way across the squares. Do each one separately as not to mix the colors. I do it twice just for the fun of it. I like it's look this way. 6.  I make up a very watery watercolour mix.  My favourites are these Winsor & Newton ones, and as you can see I'm nearly out of the dark brown I like best. 7.  Sometimes I add a tiny bit of tube watercolour, because it seems to have more "stickability". 8.  I smother everything in a wash of watercolour.  Remember doing these kind of paintings at school?  Lots of fun! 9.  I pat away the excess paint.  Sometimes I do this step a few times to get the look I'm after.  Some of the watercolour soaks into the oil pastel, and even though the colours stay bright, they're also nicely grungy. 10.  I paint the background of the trunk and branches in acrylic. 11.  A second layer is added to create the "bark".  These concentric patterns are fiddly, but also strangely relaxing! 12.  Finished!  I now break that rule of no water based mediums over oil based ones, by adding the gold "lights" and the circles around them over the top of the oil pastel background.  It works fine in tiny areas, as I finish the piece off with several coats of spray matte picture varnish to protect it.  For works on canvas - heaps of coats are needed.