Looking At Art In A 'Nouveau' Way

Posted on August 15, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

by Cindy McClure

My Mucha, 14 x 17. My first Art Nouveau piece. I used circular shapes and lots of gold

“Your work reminds me of Alphonse Mucha”. This remark made on a portrait post ignited my desire to learn how to draw in Muchas Art Nouveau style. I love Art Nouveau and, with a year of colored pencil practice behind me by 2017, I was ready and excited to give it a try.

Drawing what you love is a powerful motivational force. Having spent months putting my dear grandchildren on paper, I knew the level of creativity and commitment needed to complete an art piece was directly influenced by the level of interest I had in what and who I was drawing. Who better, then, to be part of my first Art Nouveau pieces but my grandchildren?

Mucha excelled at creating pieces with exact geometric shapes, perfect balance, engaging composition, vibrant, saturated colors, and (often) text. Given my inexperience and developing skills, my biggest consideration was deciding what combination of these elements would work for me. I needed a plan.

I learned having a theme for each piece helped dictate and unite my design elements. It was daunting to conceptualize a large, intricate piece of art so I simplified the process, placing one design element at a time, beginning first with a large orb then adding other complimentary elements. It was slow progress in unfamiliar territory. To keep from being overwhelmed, I kept the design elements simple and similar. The end result was my first Art Nouveau learning piece, fittingly titled “My Mucha.”

One of the strongest elements in Muchas Nouveau work and, which to me, embodies the essence of good Art Nouveau, is hair. Hair plays a very large part in the overall effectiveness of Art Nouveau design. Mucha took hair to a celestial level! I love drawing and designing Art Nouveau hair! I drew “Mucha-style” hair in my first piece. In addition to discovering my capability to adequately compile and arrange design elements, I’m realizing that my technical comprehension is also growing. The creative juices were beginning to flow!

The learning and experimentation continued. I love the circular shapes in Art Nouveau and find they complement all my pieces. Mucha repeated many shapes and color palettes from piece to piece, often using oranges in his skin tones and background designs. This gave me the idea to use similar color selections in my second piece. It wasn’t a hardship since I love autumn colors! The central orb became a bold orange harvest moon. Embedded against this backdrop was my young “My Mucha” model who had transformed in this piece from child to elegant Lady. I introduced new design elements: tiles, feathers, borders and lettering. I like the Parisian flair Mucha interjected in his work, so I decided a title banner in French would best suit this piece. The hair took on a life of its own! My father worked in wood and I love its grain and color. The spark of an idea to recreate those loves on paper evidenced itself when the hair flow and application of color began to resemble marquetry. A huge divergence from Muchas’ rampant locks but one I found very pretty and effective! A sparkling diamond earring and a white feather boa later, “La Dame d’Autumne” ~ The Lady of Autumn ~ was complete.

La Dame d'Etriente ~ The Lady of Autumn ~ 14 x 17 My 2nd Art Nouveau piece. New colors, new hair design and lettering

I was developing my own approach to Art Nouveau design with each project. By the time “La Dame” was complete, I had a solid grasp of basic design (colors I loved to use and placement format) that would provide the foundation for future work. I was finding my own art “voice.” This was a promising beginning!

I am hugely fond of gold and Art Nouveau is a perfect outlet for my gold indulgences! I used gold heavily in “My Mucha” and I love the effect. When I came across a photo of my youngest granddaughter in a gold-accented Grecian robe and headdress costume, I knew she was the perfect selection for my next, and most recent, Art Nouveau project.

I wanted to direct attention to the child and her outfit in this piece so I did not include extra embellishments and left the background white. Mucha drew clothing with the same effortless fluidity as he did hair. With that in mind, I addressed the textural aspects of the robe and headband ~ folds, shading, color ~ with the hope of giving a feeling of life and movement to a serene composition. New elements were introduced ~ reflective gold sashing, geometric headband shapes ~ and familiar elements ~hair, orb and tiles ~ were revisited. This piece was drawn simply because of the joy I find in creating Art Nouveau and because this child is dear. She is appropriately titled “Le Petit Bijou” ~ The Little Jewel.

Le Petit Bijou ~ The Little Jewel ~ 14 x 17 My current Art Nouveau piece. I used gold and autumn tones with a simple orb/tile design and white background. More fabric and headdress details.

I love this style of art. I love that it allows me to be immersed in colors and forms that satisfy my need for beauty. I am uplifted and inspired by the freedom of creating art beyond the visual constraints of a photograph. I enjoy and appreciate the challenges of design and originality Art Nouveau demands and I eagerly look forward to creating more and better Art Nouveau work in the future.

About Cindy:

Cindy is a self-taught colored pencil portrait artist.  She specializes in portraiture with her favorite subjects being children.  Her work has been published in Ann Kullberg’s COLOR magazine.  In addition to drawing portraits for family and others, Cindy also creates Art Nouveau art work using traditional and original design elements.  She is involved in several colored pencil art groups where she shares her work and helps others who like to know more about colored pencil drawing techniques.

See more here: 


The Pencil Box - Featured Artists - August 2018

Posted on August 01, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

August 2018 Featured Artists. Corresponding with the art gallery that is featured each month in Ann Kullberg's COLOR MagazineThe Pencil Box blog series will give artists a bit more space to share insight and inspiration about their colored pencil art. Make sure to check out links at the bottom of this post for our Facebook group partners - join in the fun and your artwork could be featured, too!

Conjuring Mischief by Sheri Engel
11 x 14 inches
Prismacolor colored pencils on Canson Mi Teintes board

I took this photo of my son while we were waiting on some food in a restaurant. I always loved the expression on his face. He is a spunky little boy and full of mischief. I had just started drawing, and this was only my 3rd or 4th piece. My husband asked me to do a portrait of one of our kids and I immediately thought of this one. I was very skeptical of my skills at this point, and was so very pleased when I was able to get a very good likeness of my son and managed to capture the look on his face that I liked so much. After this piece, I decided to continue with colored pencils.

About  Sheri:

Sheri is a self-taught amateur artist. She decided one day at 46 years old to pick up some colored pencils and do a drawing after seeing some colored pencil art on a Pinterest page. She had no experience in art of any kind before picking up the pencils. 


Patience by Katie Packer
12 x 16 inches
Fabriano Artistico Hot Pressed Water Colour Paper. Using Faber Castell Polychromos and Caran D'Ache Luminance and Pablos.
Reference photo supplied with permission by Ali Abdulraheem Photography

This piece was created using Ali Abdulraheem's Reference photo. This reference photo caught my eye as it was the typical Kingfisher pose and the moss covered branch tied in with a collection of English birds I'm currently working on. This was my very first attempt at drawing feathers!...and Branches!

It was created in a realistic theme, as is all my artwork... by taking the photograph and expanding on it to create a piece that still has a very 'drawn' look about it. I don't strive for photo realism, rather, an image that goes past what is shown on a photograph.

About  Katie:

Katie is a self taught Pet Portrait and Wildlife artist based out in the countryside in the south of England. She takes inspiration from the immeasurable amount of wildlife that frequents her garden and fields surrounding her. Whilst working on many wildlife pieces, Katie also takes on Commissions.

See more at: https://www.facebook.com/KatiePackerArtist/



Afraid by Ariel Francisco
16 x 24 inches
Colored pencil on Bristol Cartolina.

From someone who is just stepping into the world of fine arts I decided to portray the typical problems of young artists. They are full of potential but lack confidence. Their aspirations are overflowing but they keep on hiding it from others. Hiding from criticism and hiding from rejections, terrified of being different from others and stepping out of the box that is limiting themselves. I want to tell them about a quote by Dr. Seuss, “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” And, instead of choosing the road or path that is less traveled, try to make their own path because i think that will make more difference.

About  Ariel:

Ariel Amistoso Francisco, An aspiring artist who desires to inspire other young artists and to be known worldwide especially in the world of colored pencil. He is a 16 years old senior high school student from Valenzuela City, Philippines.



The A Team by Bonny Snowdon
19 x 27 inches
Polychromos, Pablos and Luminance on Pastelmat

The A Team is the largest piece I've created to date. I visited the family and took photos of all three dogs - the little spaniel, Merlin, was so very well behaved and the two Labradors, the black one is the yellow one's father, were rather less well behaved! I spent a lot of time working out the composition as I'm starting to understand the importance of balancing subjects within a multiple portrait. The piece has been framed beautifully with UV anti reflective glass. It was juried into the UKCPS annual exhibition and won 8th place in the recent animal exhibition with Light Space and Time. I learned so much whilst drawing this portrait - especially around drawing curly fur!

About  Bonny:

In her 2nd year as an equine and pet portrait artist, Bonny produces beautiful colour pencil paintings, with her love of horses and dogs clearly shining through in each piece she creates. Now also creating tutorials, Bonny aims to help other pencil artists develop their skills using coloured pencils. 




These artworks were published in the August 2018 issue of COLOR Magazine.


Posted in The Pencil Box

August 2018 Showcase - Colored Pencil Artwork

Posted on August 01, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

The three artists featured in the August 2018 issue of COLOR Magazine Showcase submitted stories about their artwork for our blog. Read below about their inspiration for each of these interesting animal subjects.


Beautiful Jess by Jane Robinson
12 x 9 inches
Caran D'Ache coloured pencils and a small amount of acrylic paint. The artwork has been drawn on tinted Daler Rowney Ingres Paper.

I work as an animal portrait artist and enjoy running my page The Passionate Eye on Facebook where I get the opportunity to showcase each commission as I complete it, sometimes showing the artwork in the stages of its development and chatting about progress with my faithful followers. Every New Year I run a competition for the followers of The Passionate Eye to give them the chance to win a portrait of their pet as many people say that they would love to have one done but not all can afford the luxury.

This year, rather than just pick numbers out a hat as I usually do when selecting a winner, I asked people to enter one strong and clear photo of their pet which would make me just long to do it's portrait. The photo could be wacky or quirky, a classic study or one which just simply spoke volumes about the personality of their special companion.

I had nearly three hundred entries including all kinds of animals from horses to llamas. Some of the images were just not clear enough to consider and many of the photos came with heart rending stories about the loss of that pet or how it had saved its owner from depression…. making a final choice of the winner promised to be agonising. However, the photo of Jess had me in the first second of looking into her honest eyes. Everything about this beautiful dog's face speaks of love and loyalty to me, of wisdom and sadness and kindness.

I shortlisted the photo of Jess with about thirty others but I knew from the start that her photo would win. I just felt a leap in my heart the second my eyes fell upon it.

The best bit of running a competition like this one is always when you tell the owner of the pet that they have won and the young lady was delighted, saying she had never won anything in her life before. Drawing Jess has been a wonderful journey for me. Every piece of artwork I produce teaches me something new.

About Jane:

Jane Miller Robinson is an animal portrait artist living rural Herefordshire, UK. She has a degree in Three Dimensional Design from Loughborough College of Art & Design. Jane loves to concentrate on fine details in her portraiture and also enjoys surrealism in private work. She lives with her husband, two children and three naughty dogs.

See more at: www.janemillerrobinson.co.uk



Tea Party by Gretchen Parker
11 x 19 inches
Prismacolor Premier on Grafix Drafting Film (GDF)

Our daughter and I have a small collection of whimsical ceramic pieces. The cats are sugar and creamer, the dog and chair are salt and pepper shakers. The teapot was a gift from a friend and the girl with the parasol is a planter my grandmother surprised me with when I had scarlet fever at age 10.

I have had these pieces on my mind for a painting for many years. Finally, three years ago I did the photo shoot but just never could find the time to do the painting. This is the year it finally happened! It feels good to get it out of my head for others to actually see!

Working on GDF allows me to build up the rich values easily and quickly. To create the texture of the tablecloth I use the technique of frottage. Frottage is sometimes called a rubbing. To create the texture of the tablecloth, I worked on the back of the film by putting a textured cloth napkin under the film. Using the side of my pencil and a medium pressure the film accurately creates a reproduction of the fabric texture. I added shading and detail of the cloth on the front of the film.

To get the whitest white dots of the sparkly highlights on the ceramic surfaces I wet the tip of a watercolor pencil and tapped it on to the surface of the film.

Black on GDF will develop a wax bloom creating a hazy appearance over the dark hue. It is easily controlled by buffing the pigment with a tissue. I never use a fixative on film because it may melt the wax in the Prismas and cause the pigment to run.

About Gretchen:

Gretchen is a retired neurodevelopmental pediatric occupational therapist with a specialty in hippotherapy (horseback riding thderapy) As she neared retirement she finally had time to hone her lifelong passion for drawing. When Gretchen found Ann Kullberg's first portrait book her love affair with CP was born! Gretchen is also one of 13 SOAR Colored Pencil Workshop Instructors.

See more at: 




Hatsukoi - First Love by Ranjini Venkatachari
24 x 18 inches
Luminance, Derwents, Koh-I-noor Polycolor & Prismacolors on Ampersand Pastelbord

Origami has been one of the biggest creative muse when it comes to my work. My new series called Virtual Reality, incorporates scenarios and landscapes composed of paper and origami set in a narrative.Narrative is how all of us see the world and how we connect with each other. We put together stories in our heads for situations in our lives. We try to fill in the blanks. And when we see a work of art for the first time, we often tend to look for a narrative trying to establish a connection.

In this series I intend to communicate with the viewer via visual clues - color, design, symbolism, title etc. The story and the art itself will change depending on who is looking at it. One of the best feelings in life for most people is falling in love. And it is very special to be someone's first love. My first narrative piece in this series is called "Hatsukoi-First Love." Tulips are symbols of perfect love and the red tulips are most strongly associated with true love.The hummingbird signifies eternity or continuity with a prime message of "the sweetest nectar is within!"

Here's a dedication for my first love- my art and everyone who has been an immense support in making me who I am today. Special thanks to Ann Kullberg for acting as my Japanese thesaurus in picking this beautiful word to describe my thoughts.

About  Ranjini:

Ranjini is a colored pencil artist who has working with this medium for more than 12 years. She draws inspiration from her rich cultural heritage.Her colored pencil art has been juried and won awards in National and International shows across the US & UK. Her works have been published in several magazines.She is a 5 year signature member of CPSA.

See more at: https://www.facebook.com/Vividpencils/


These artworks were published in the August 2018 issue of COLOR Magazine.

Download the 40 page digital version of the magazine for just $3.89, or subscribe and save 15%. Each issue is packed with step by step projects, critiques, colored pencil tips, artist profiles and much more.

Posted in showcase

My Journey Back to Drawing

Posted on July 31, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 5 Comments

by Christina Simon

Agapanthus in Bloom, around 9x12in (paper) - I fell in love with everything about this flower, specially its colours. Reference photo by Nigel Burkitt, with permission. Caran d'Ache Luminance and Pablo on Moulin du Roy HP 300gsm

I was born and raised in Brazil and always had pencils and paper in my hands as far as I can remember. My earliest memory of it being the one of a freshly repainted white wall in my bedroom covered with all sorts of scribbles done with my Crayolas when I was around 2 years old. My mom was in shock and the wall remained like that for years.

I kept drawing mostly from observing illustrations and photos, always using coloured pencils until college, where I graduated as Product Designer. At the time (end of the 80's) all I had was paper, pen and pencils, no computers, so I kept drawing, but technical drawings.

After I graduated in 91, I've worked as Interior Designer for three years and then moved to France, where I live since then. Here, I've worked as freelance Graphic Designer for some years but the income being irregular and the bills being regular, I decided I needed to have a temporary regular job as well. And that's how I began working in Luxury Retail.

This temporary job became the main one, I had no time left to do anything else and I totally lost contact with my papers, pencils and graphic design projects. This period of my life was a long one: almost 20 years.

When I quit my last job as a luxury jeweller store manager I was kind of lost, because I didn't feel like working on retail anymore but didn't know what to do other than that, having been totally away from my previous professional activities for decades.

That's when my old Caran d'Ache Supracolor Soft pencil set became a frequent and lovely thought, and I noticed how much I missed them. I decided to offer myself a set of 120 Caran d'Ache Pablo coloured pencils and some colouring books. I didn't use them often at the time but they were there.

One day, making my bed, I felt an indescribable pain in my back, just when I was considering working on retail again. I thought the pain was something temporary but it wasn't, so I had to learn how to live with it and find something to do to fill my days as I couldn't do much without pain and it is the case until now.

That's when and how my journey back to drawing began. My wonderful pencils and colouring books became part of my daily life on summer 2016.

After more or less 5 months of colouring and collecting new art supplies, on August 2016, I decided to use my Instagram account created in 2011 and never really used since then to share photos of the pages I was colouring and also some doodles. At this point, it all was a therapy to me.

But after 4 months I felt the need to do something more, create something. It was December 2016 and I imagined a butterfly, half realistic and coloured, half cherry blossom branches drawn using black ink. To my surprise this drawing was a immense success, has been shared by many big art-sharing pages on Instagram and it made me realise I was ready for more.

Morpho Butterfly with Flowers wing, around 6x6in (drawings) - From my imagination. Coloured pencils (Luminance, Pablo, Polychromos) & Ink on Fabriano Bristol (2016) and on Fabriano Artistico (2018).

I drew another butterfly using the same concept and some colouring pages later, I felt it was time to do more challenging and realistic pieces.

The first drawing after this Epiphany was a tree frog. I stilI mixed ink and pencils to draw it, but the following drawing, a butterfly shaped strawberry has been drawn using only coloured pencils.

Then I fell in love with a magnificent photo by Nigel Burkitt, who kindly gave me permission to draw it, an agapanthus beginning to bloom. All about it was a challenge and I wanted to do justice to the photo I was going to draw. It took me more than 100h and several weeks to complete it and when I looked at it my first thought was "Did I really draw this?". I felt like if I was staring at another artist's work. This flower really was a milestone to me.

Another butterfly and some weeks later, another Epiphany: I felt I needed to draw a bird, something I didn't thought I could do at the time. I picked up a photo of a cute robin on Pixabay and gave it a go. What I thought would be a challenge happened naturally and I fell in love with drawing birds. This happened on October 2017, people loved it and I almost only drew birds since then. Their colours and shapes, not to mention their intelligence, never cease to amaze me!

In March I've been commissioned to draw an American Kestrel. My first commission ever, drawn at real size. It was an honour and a huge challenge that required a month and around 200h of work to complete and thanks to that, I created new techniques to get the details I was aiming to achieve. This gorgeous bird is another milestone on my journey and it is now on a loving home in the USA.

American Kestrel Sitting on a Mullein, around 9x12in (paper) - My first commission now at a loving home in the USA. Photo provided. Caran d'Ache Luminance & Pablo, Faber-Castell Polychromos on Fabriano Artistico HP 300gsm.

Other than various birds, I've also drawn bumblebees (another favourite subject), some cherries, another frog, a blossoming agapanthus and, to measure my progress after 18 months of drawing, a 2018 version of the butterfly I've drawn in December 2016 and was the beginning of it all.

Butterflies have always fascinated me. They symbolise transformation and through their example, they teach us to set everything that we once known aside and to embrace an entire new way of being.

I can't not to notice how much they have marked the beginning of each new chapter of my drawing journey and I can't wait for the next one!

About Christina

Christina graduated in Product Design and worked as Interior and freelance Graphic Designer before spending almost two decades working on Luxury Retail. Following a back injury her love for coloured pencils resurfaced and she became a full-time coloured pencil artist whose work is inspired by nature. She is a colour perfectionist, cares for those small details that make the difference. Her favorite art quote is "I am still learning" by Michelangelo.

Check out Christina's Facebook Page >>

Winners of Ann Kullberg's Patreon Exclusive Drawing Content!

Posted on July 23, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

Congratulations to the winners of our FIRST EVER Patreon Patron drawing contest

1st Place: John Irvine, "Surprise!"

2nd Place: Chris Butcher, "Orchids" and Ruth Paul, "Signs of Spring"

Thank you to all who entered! The contest was open to all Gold and Platinum Patrons of Ann's Patreon page, who completed a drawing from one of the Patreon Exclusive Reference Photos and Line Drawings. And for the first time in the history of Ann Kullberg contests- we awarded CASH prizes!

Want to enter next time? Join as a Gold or Platinum Patron and get access to royalty-free reference photos and line drawings every month. The next contest will be this December. First place winner receives $50 and second place $25!

Check out all of the entries below!


Art at Lake Ozark

Posted on July 12, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

by Jennifer Slouha

My art booth at the June event.

Hot Summer Nights is the largest family-oriented award-winning car cruise in Missouri. The event is devoted to showcasing some of the most impressive hot rods, classic cruisers, muscle cars, vintage trucks, motorcycles, and even some custom vehicles. It aims to re-create the nostalgic ‘American Graffiti’ atmosphere in its unique location. Vehicles can stretch for over a mile down the length of the historic Bagnell Dam Strip. Hot Summer Nights draws crowds in the thousands and has been an award-winning event at Lake Ozark, Missouri since 2008. It is a five-part cruising series that is free to attend and is sponsored by the Bagnell Dam Strip Association. Each month has a different theme. May 11 was Here Comes Summer, June 8 was The Mother Road – Route 66 – Still Kickin’, July 13 will be Rods ‘N’ Rock “N’ Roll, August 10 will be Keep on Cruisin’, and September 7 will be Salute to Our Heroes – Military, Police, Firefighters and EMTs.

I contacted the Hot Summer Nights via phone in the spring of 2018 and asked if I could be a vendor with my artwork. I was immediately told that vendors were not allowed at this event but I explained that I specialized in automotive artwork and numerous pieces of my art, mainly colored pencil, have been published and won awards. I gave my website information and was told that it would be a week or two for the board to look over everything. Within a week I received a phone call letting me know that I could set up a booth to display my artwork and take commissions. I was ecstatic to be able to be a part of this! I had been going to this event regularly for several years to get reference photos for my artwork.

Looking down Bagnell Dam Strip.

The first event tested everyone’s nerves. As soon as we were parked to unload my booth items, we realized that we were dealing with thirty-plus mile per hour wind gusts. We ended up waiting about an hour and a half for the wind to die down enough so that we could set up the booth. I had to get creative attaching the artwork to the display system using both zip-ties and S hooks. It worked and I was able to display all of my artwork successfully. I was unable to put up my tent walls but that ended up working well too and people could see in my booth from every side. I worked on a colored pencil demonstration, a drawing of a Ford Galaxie. The drawing consisted of three varying degrees of completion. The left portion was finished, the middle had the base layers of colored pencil applied, and the right portion was just the graphite pencil line drawing. I wanted to show the basic steps involved in creating a colored pencil drawing in one piece and this worked. The only problem that I encountered with my colored pencil artwork was that most people walking by thought my artwork was framed photographs, not drawings. This gave me a good opportunity to start up conversations about my colored pencil drawings and explain what could be created with such a wonderfully versatile medium.

Working on the colored pencil demonstration in my art booth at the May event.

The event in June went much smoother. We had no high winds or green pollen covering everything and the attendance was amazing. I created new signs for my booth for this event so people would be aware that I had hand drawn artwork, not photographs. I had several inquiries about creating custom artwork. Most people that entered my booth were drawn to the colored pencil pieces and were surprised what could be achieved with the medium. I had brought along the demonstration drawing to work on again and was able to show the supplies that I used. There were also many surprised looks when people found out that a woman was creating the automotive artwork. I’ve always loved vehicles. When I was little my parents used to take me and my brother to car shows, car cruises, drag races, truck and tractor pulls, and dirt track races. I was always around different types of vehicles and was never told that a girl could not like them. I saw that as the same way I enjoyed jewelry and clothes. Cars also represent freedom to me. As a teenager, I could not wait to get my driver’s license so I could get out and explore the world and travel. It just seemed natural that my fascination with vehicles works its way into my artwork somehow.

About Jennifer:

Jennifer is a self-taught artist living in Holts Summit, Missouri.  She specializes in colored pencil, graphite pencil, and acrylic artwork.  She works in a wide variety of subject matter but really enjoys the technical aspect of creating automotive artwork. See more at http://www.jenniferslouha.com/.

July 2018 Showcase - Colored Pencil

Posted on July 02, 2018 by Ann Kullberg | 0 Comments

The three artists featured in the July 2018 issue of COLOR Magazine Showcase submitted stories about their artwork for our blog. Read below about their inspiration for each of these interesting animal subjects.


Coming Unwound! by Sherry Smith
 22 x 13.5 inches
22 x 13.5 inches, Prismacolor, Lyra Rembrandt, Luminance colored pencil on Fabriano Artistico soft-pressed paper.

As Spring inches closer to us, I wait with great expectation for those first pops of color after the lack thereof in Winter. Tulips are such a welcome sight! I like to take my subject matter, arrange them on a background of patterned fabric that both compliments and contrasts with them in the direct sunlight, and compose away! The shadows cast on the fabric are also an integral part of my composition and direct the viewer's gaze. "Coming Un-wound" is a celebration of the season and the hope of warmth and light to come. I chose a fabric that seemed to be exploding with color and reflected my emotions as I discover each new blossom in our own back yard!

About Sherry:

Sherry Smith holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Akron. She grew up in Ohio and moved to Virginia after graduation. Although Sherry was a Ceramics major, she started using colored pencils in the mid 1980's when oil painting became too cumbersome ( and her cats kept walking through her palette!)

See more at: https://www.facebook.com/Sherry-Smith-Art-284080361649295/



Artist Life by Skye Riseley
33 x 47 inches
Holbein, Prismacolor, Caran d'Ache and Lyra colored pencils on watercolor paper

This artwork was drawn based on a still life set up I put together of a variety of art materials laying around. I wanted to capture the mess of an artists space but also the love and importance of an artists tools. I find a lot of interest in drawing still lives as you can create your own story and composition. You also have the challenge of making it representational but still include your own style and creativity. Being an artist and an art teacher I am literally surrounded by my craft all day long, it can be easy to let the joy of creating become every day and the luxury of the tools I have to work with become mundane and expected. This work is a friendly reminder to myself to appreciate how blessed I am to do what I do and have what I have.

About Skye

Skye Riseley is a Perth artist and high school art teacher. Working mostly in colour pencil for a little over a year, Skye explored many mediums before finding her passion in pencil. The main consistencies seen in her work is her use of bold colour and her goal to express joy and emotion in her work. Her work being inspired by her daily life.

See more at: http://www.skyeriseley.com



See me by Mandy Peltier
800 x 1000 inches
Pencils and paper
Credit photo

My husband's transient job requires our family to move every few years. From 2007-2009, we lived in Nigeria as bright-eyed and bushy-tailed newlyweds ready to conquer the world. It was truly an experience of a lifetime to take in the sites, sounds, and smells of Africa and to embark on a lifelong dream of seeing the world. During our time in Nigeria, we went on many adventures, including a safari! We also enjoyed hiking around the city we lived in, and on one of our hikes we passed through a village belonging to the Fulani tribe.

The people were very friendly and happy to let me snap a few photographs. This young woman is one of the portraits I took on our hike that day. I always had intentions of hanging this photo up in my house alongside other photos I've taken in the different countries we've lived in and visited, but I have never gotten around to it. When I was thinking about what I wanted my next colored pencil project to be, I knew I wanted something that showed a lot of emotion, and this photo immediately came to mind. I realized as soon as I started working on this piece that I was never meant to hang her photo on our wall but to draw her. Living overseas in foreign cultures is not all daisies and roses, and it definitely includes hardships and homesickness.

Quite unintentionally, I starting drawing "See Me" ten years to the month after I took it, which brought back a flood of memories and completeness that were like a soothing balm to my soul. Home is not one place to me but everywhere I've lived. Pieces of my heart are scattered all over the globe. "See Me" has a twofold meaning. The expression on her face implores the viewer to not just notice her, but to really take her in and see her for who she is and for what she can offer this world. Less importantly, the reflection in her eyes is me, so when you look at this drawing, you can see me, too.

About Mandy:

Mandy Peltier is a colored pencil artist and teacher who currently lives and works in Northeast Ohio. When she is not creating art or teaching an art class, Mandy enjoys spending time with her family, working out, crocheting, sewing, reading, drinking coffee, gardening, and tapping her maple tree for syrup in the winter.

See more at: http://www.mandypeltier.com


These artworks were published in the July 2018 issue of COLOR Magazine.

Download the 40 page digital version of the magazine for just $3.89, or subscribe and save 15%. Each issue is packed with step by step projects, critiques, colored pencil tips, artist profiles and much more.

Posted in showcase

Recent Articles