Author Archives: Gail Sibley

PSA Feature Artist: Gail Sibley, "Saturna," pastel on Wallis paper, 9 x 12 in

PSA Feature Artist On The Pastel Society Of America Facebook Page

I’m in the home stretch of the DK Project so have very little time to do much else. So no monthly round-up today but I will try to get to it for next week. In the meantime, here’s a selection of my pastel paintings being shown on the PSA Facebook Group page where I am, this month, the PSA feature artist! Truly a totally unexpected honour!!

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Do it! Illustration from Sol LeWitt's letter to Eva Hesse

Just DO! Words Of Wisdom From Artist Sol LeWitt To Artist Eva Hesse

Recently I came across a catalogue of an exhibition – Converging Lines – that showed the artwork of Sol LeWitt and Eva Hesse. Yes I know their work isn’t about pastels but what I want to share with you is a letter that LeWitt wrote his friend Hesse on 14 April 1965 while she was in Germany.

His letter is in response to one from Eva Hesse in which she must have moaned about the state of her work. If you’ve ever suffered self-doubt in your work, or if you do in the future, get out this letter and read/listen to it. You’ll find wise words to help motivate you.

Here’s a photograph of the first page of the five-page letter.

 

First page of a letter from Sol LeWitt to Eva Hesse, 14 April 1965

First page of a five-page letter from Sol LeWitt to Eva Hesse, 14 April 1965

 

Rather than reproduce all five pages here, I decided to make a vocal recording of it. You’ll find more good stuff from LeWitt!

 

A very short background on these two artists: Sol Lewitt met Eva Hesse in the late 1950’s. “I was sort of wowed by her..” (Converging Lines, p64).  He was eight years her senior but they became best buddies. Eva Hesse married the sculptor Tom Doyle (who is referred to at the end of LeWitt’s letter). Sadly Hesse died of a brain tumor at the age of 34 on 29 May 1970.

Learn more about Eva Hesse here. And Sol LeWitt here.

Also, check out the book that inspired this blog:

 

 

Speaking of JUST DO! why not join me in Croatia this September!? I’m jiggling with anticipation 🙂

Read more on my workshop page.

 

Croatia Banner

 

So what did you think of Sol LeWitt’s letter to Eva Hesse letter? Were you nodding, saying, “Yup I needed to hear this”? Or perhaps you’re going gangbusters right now and it didn’t resonate. Either way, let me know by leaving a reply!

 

Until next time,

~ Gail

 

PS. This blog  is rather short because I’m still deeply immersed in the DK Project, and probably will be for at least another couple of weeks. Still, I wanted to get something valuable out to you. Look forward to hearing what you thought of it!

Maureen Spinale, "Joy, Peace & Hope," pastel painted on UArt 400, 18x18 in. I was just so taken by the light in this stand of Aspens, made me thankful to be among them.

Maureen Spinale: Painter Of Trees, Guardians of the Earth

Last year I featured a painting of trees by Maureen Spinale that just blew me away. (See that painting and what I wrote here.) Since then, I’ve seen more and more of her paintings, and each piece takes my breath away. A lover of trees myself, I definitely wanted Maureen Spinale as a guest blogger. And here she is!

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Creating colour studies: three colour studies with first layer

How Creating Colour Studies Can Improve Your Paintings

I know how tempting it is to get right in there and paint when you’re excited about a subject. But hold on, did you do a thumbnail?! And what about creating colour studies, have you drawn up a couple of those?

I know I know, I hear you – it all takes so much time!! But you know what? A bit of time spent in preparation can save you frustration and disappointment in the long run, and also help you produce an exceptional painting!

So what are colour studies?

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January's Noteworthy Pastels: Tom Bailey, "Peace in the Valley," pastel on multimedia board, 18 x 24 in

January’s Noteworthy Pastels

Well I promised you a round-up for of January’s noteworthy pastels after missing the December edition due to the DK Project so here it is!

It’s interesting how sometimes in some of these monthly posts themes emerge and subjects repeat. That’s certainly the case this month. See if you can spot what I mean among January’s noteworthy pastels!

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DK Project: Pencil sketch for "Taking a Sip"

Curious About What I’m Working On? It’s the DK Project

A couple of posts ago, I mentioned that I was working on a BIG project that was going to consume a LOT of my time hence my skipping the round-up of December paintings and also missing last Tuesday’s blog. (Thanks to those of you who wrote me noticing that a blog hadn’t arrived in your inbox last week!) I’ve been given the okay to tell you about it. I can’t share all but I can give you hints. Curious? Let’s call it the DK Project.

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Richard Suckling, "Horadada," Unison and Sennelier pastels on Sennelier LaCarte 9 ½ x 12 ½ in. Painted from a lovely tapas bar in the village on the sea front with a nice bit of shade.

Richard Suckling – Studio Artist Takes On Plein Air Painting

Bright and bold were the words that came to mind when I first saw the work of UK artist Richard Suckling. His work dazzles with colour and light. I featured his work last March and since then have been awed every time he posts a new piece.

In October, I noticed he’d started to post pieces done en plein air in Spain. They startled me with their immediacy and had a quality of fearlessness. And so I invited Richard to contribute a blog about these pieces. Little did I know that they were indeed daring as painting on location was out of this studio painter’s comfort zone!

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Life drawing: Ten-minute pose

Life Drawing Or The First Time Is Always the Hardest

You know when you take a car trip somewhere for the first time – say to a new friend’s house – and then the return trip always seems to take so much less time? That’s because in the first journey, everything is unfamiliar. We don’t know where we’re going, how to recognize the landmarks or signposts, what to do when we get there, we’re unsure of what the parking arrangements are like, who will be there, and what may be expected of us. Once we take the first step and do it once, ever after it’s easier. This is the same for doing anything new including going to a life drawing session.

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