Daniel Wise Demo

I've been a fan of Daniel Wise since I first became acquainted with his work. He was primarily a pastelist until he took up oils last year. My son and I were lucky enough to take in a demo over the weekend during an Old Town schedule of demos through The Art League in Alexandria, Virginia. According to my 12 year old son, it wasn't nearly as boring as he thought it would be. Kudos to Daniel, an entertaining and lively person.

Here's the selected scene from Waterfront Park. For this demo, Daniel used about a half sheet of 12x18 Wallis in Belgian Mist.
First, Daniel begins with a quick thumbnail sketch using three values. After deciding on composition, he uses a hard pastel to block in the structure. For this he uses a darker value and considers it to be establishing his darkest value for the overall painting. With a brush and turpenoid, which he likes because it dries quickly, he spreads the pastel around, leaving some places darker, some lighter. If it gets too dilute, he applies more pastel for additional value and says it gives a more substantial dark then. An additional purpose is to lay down pastel in this method so he doesn't have to go back over it with pastel later.
The upper left was a potential sail boat painted out. This shows the top half almost finished. When asked, he said his focal point was the boat, then laughed saying he was first drawn to the lightness of the cabin and later switching to the boom. He changed the boom's color several times and demonstrated for the crowd how flexible pastels are and how well they layer. In his travel box, he preferred Ludwigs and Unisons, saving the very soft brands like Schminke for the studio.

Daniel uses his fingers and the side of his thumb to smudge  his sky and to soften distant edges.

For painting surfaces, he likes Wallis and Gessoboard covered in a Golden's pumice mix combined with additional marble dust. With regards to the latter, he likes how the brush marks create tooth just as the pumice and marble dust.

Daniel's pastel box, the All-In-One Easel, was made in Maine and has a heavy duty camera tripod underneath. It holds pastels on one side and papers, paintings, and supplies on  the other.

Although Daniel wasn't crazy about his work, the crowd encouraged him to continue, so he painted the water, too. He switched from long strokes to smaller, detailed ones.

He was not satisfied with the angle of the boat, but I was in awe of his technique. He has a marvelous ability to convey mood.
As always, a gratuitous palette picture...  

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