February 2024 Showcase - Colored Pencil Artwork

February 2024 Showcase - Colored Pencil Artwork

The three artists featured in the February 2024 issue of COLOR Magazine Showcase share the stories behind their beautiful artwork here in our blog. 

Of the Old School by Jen Urquhart
8 x 8 inches
Polychromos and Luminance colored pencils on Fabriano Artistico 640gsm HP watercolor paper. Artist’s own photo.

This still life drawing came about when I saw this gorgeous ceramic jug, with its warm browns and shiny surface, in a vintage shop. The raised surface has a design of grapes and leaves. It has quite an old world feeling, a bit special, which makes it perfect for my still life drawings. Grapes were the obvious choice to go with the jug. As my art training was in botanical art, most of my still life drawings include fruit.

The warm color palette of the jug complements the cool color of the grapes. This adds visual interest and contrast to the drawing. The dark background draws the eye to the main subjects. The composition is quite simple, with an emphasis on roundness: the shape of the jug and the grapes.

About Jen Urquhart:

It was in a botanical art course that Jen learned to draw in colored pencil. She took classes from 2017 to 2019. She gradually began to add an item to a botanical composition, which won her over to still life drawing. Her artwork was on the cover of International Artist Magazine in 2021. She lives in Stonehaven, Victoria, Australia. Find her on Facebook at Jen Urquhart Art.

Bearied in Hugs by Kathryn Hansen
10 x 13 inches
Polychromos, Luminance, Pablo and White Prismacolor colored pencils on Clairfontaine Pastelmat. Photo from Pixabay.

I have a small family so when my only niece gave birth to a darling baby boy in Oct 2022 (first baby in the family) I knew I had to create a drawing for them. The giant panda is my niece’s favorite animal, so when I found this image on a photo site of a mom and baby I knew that I absolutely had to draw them. Since I’m not the original creator of the reference photo, I wanted to make it my own as much as possible. I started by cropping way in on the background, so the main focus was on the bears.

There were many areas that I had to make up because a large fern leaf and fallen leaves were obscuring the mom’s body, along with a few other odd-looking areas in the original reference photo, but by changing those things I feel it made for a much stronger piece in the end. And now it’s beautifully hung in my great-nephew’s room for him to always enjoy.

About Kathryn Hansen:

Kathryn grew up in rural Wisconsin at a time when you could be free as a kid and not come home until dinnertime. She had many, many animals besides the family pets, which made her a lifelong animal and nature lover. She is this year’s recipient of the coveted CIPPY award (which she is beyond thrilled about) for her drawing of her cat, Kotie.

See more at instagram.com/kathrynhansenpencildrawings

Blue Heron for Momma by Brenda Bielopotocky
11 x 11 inches
Polychromos, Luminance and Pablo colored pencils on Graphix drafting film. Photo by Jason Mooney. Used with permission.

Moms are usually our greatest supporters so when my mom requested a piece featuring a blue heron, I was on the hunt for a great reference photo. The photographer is a neighbor of my sister’s, and he gave me permission to use it.

I completed it in time for my mom’s 85th birthday!

Rendering this photo on drafting film gave me the opportunity to use a method I had only seen others do: Draw the background on the back side. Doing this gave a faded effect to the scene, so the heron and the log stood out in the forefront.

Funny story (well not exactly funny): My mom took it to get framed. When I saw it framed on her wall I thought, hmm, something’s not quite right. Turns out they framed it with the back facing out. I quickly got it remedied. So let this be a lesson: Always make sure the framer knows which side is the front of a double-sided finished piece.

About Brenda Bielopotocky:

Brenda is a self-taught colored pencil artist, having started drawing again in 2017. Animals are her subject of choice, but she has been known to do a few human portraits as well. More recently she joined The Federation of Canadian Artists and has been juried into two shows. She resides in Parksville, British Columbia with her husband and dog, Bella.

See more at: www.bjayhuspetportraits.ca

These artworks were published in the February 2024 issue of COLOR Magazine.

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