Drawing With Color 2.3

This class uses pastel in the place of colored pencil for this lesson 2.3, and 2.4 (also 2.7 and 2.8).

We use pastel because of the different properties that it has when it comes to mixing color and using it compositionally. Pastel hues mix physically to create different values and colors, as opposed to colored pencils which mix by layering and we see the different colors optically, not as a new mixture.

In this lesson, we are choosing a split complementary palette, using yellow-orange as the dominant color. That means that the two other colors will be the split complements of yellow-orange, which are violet and blue. The board notes below also show Color Level 1, which mirrors this curriculum at the introductory level.


In pastel we will use mark making shapes to build form, with the cool hues for darker areas and shadows. We’re going to use dried blue corn on the cob, that has a lot of textural differences between the kernels and husks.



Above we’ve practiced mixing some of the colors and values. We’re going to do the drawing on a sheet of tinted paper that relates to the selected palette.


I started the above drawing using broad marks defining the direction and structure of the corn, along with smaller marks that begin to describe the smaller structures of the smaller pieces.

Below, one of my students continuing to build the form by layering color and building the form:



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