"The Littlest Cowboy"
Colored Pencil Demonstration
Image size: 12 x 13"




Step One:
This drawing is not typical for me.... horses are not the main subject. 
There is only a row of distant saddle horses in the background.
The paper I am using is a nice textured watercolor paper called  Fabriano Artistico,
300# hot press.  Not too rough, not too smooth and it takes a lot of punishment
(and burnishing). After transferring the preliminary sketch, I start with the shadows
and darker areas.  This way I define the parts and it gives me a 'base' to start from. 
From there I  put in my "'underpainting" or the colors that I will build upon.
As I layer different colors, they work with each other to create a richer look than
merely laying in one basic color.  Even black created by layering browns, blues and
greys will have a deeper, richer look than filling a space in with a black pencil.  Also,
with acrylics or oils, you mix the colors you want on a palette but with colored
pencils, you achieve this by layering colors over each other right on the paper. 
You can then burnish (or work the colors into each other) with a colorless blender. 
It's good to keep in mind that the last color applied will be the most dominant.  
The first pencil I start with is a Prismacolor Verithin Black to define the
dark areas such as the hat and lightly fill in the shadows.  Next I layer Prisma
Warm Grey 70%, Derwent Blue Grey and Prisma Black over the darkest part of the
felt hat. Burnish with a Colorless Blender. For the sunlit parts of the hat I used:
Prisma Sienna Brown, Burnt Yellow Ochre and a light layering of
 Prisma Warm Grey 50%. I burnished this with White in the lighter areas.
The vest is created with:  Prisma Indigo Blue and Violet, burnished with White
in the lightest areas. The shadows are created with Derwent Blue Grey,
Prisma Violet and Black, burnished with a Colorless Blender.
The halter is: Verithin Scarlet Red, Prisma Poppy Red,  Terra Cotta and Warm
Grey 10% with a light overcoat of Derwent Gunmetal in the shadows.
The halter rope is: Prisma Warm Grey 10%, Derwent Brown Ochre and White
with Derwent Gunmetal and Bronze in the shadows.
The jeans are: Prisma Indigo Blue and Cold Grey 90% in the shadows, Prisma True
Blue and Cold Grey 10% for the lighter areas. Except for the skin tones, I burnish
everything else with either White or a Colorless Blender (or the same color for more
intensity).  Also, never burnish cloth. You will lose the soft look of
 the fabric, let the texture of the paper help create the look. The exception
here was the vest which is made of a shiny nylon. Plan ahead for light areas and
 highlights. It's hard to get them back if you accidentally layer too much dark color.





Step Two:
At this point I have a good start on the skin tones and finished
most of the vest. The halter is more defined and the shadows darkened.
I still have a few details to finish. Sometimes while working on a piece, it's good to
move around as you work. Concentrating on one small section with a lot of detail
can become tedious and varying where you work can give it a better sense
of unity.  Keeping track of the colors you use  in the drawing  is also a good idea. 
The colors used in this step are as follows:
Prisma Light Peach and Peach for the sunlit areas of the face and hands,
Prisma Terra Cotta and Verithin  Dark Brown in the shadows.  No burnishing is necessary.


Step Three:
Nearly finished.  I've added the horses in the background.
There were none in the actual reference photo but were needed to add "story" and "interest"
to the overall composition. The horses are lightly drawn  with Prisma Dark Umber,
Sienna Brown, Cold Grey Dark, Cold Grey Light and Derwent Burnt Yellow Ochre.
they were burnished with white (highlights) and a Colorless Blender.


Step Four:
More layering on the vest, shirt, jeans and skin tones, except for the
fabric and skin, I don't like the white of the paper to show.
In the finished product, the last step was putting in the grass
with an undercoat of Derwent Brown, Derwent Burnt Yellow
Ochre, Prismacolor Dark Umber and Prisma Dark Green.
Highlights and individual blades in the grass are painted in acrylic. 
The piece was then sprayed with a UV protective fixative to prevent
bloom and fading, then matted and framed.

The Littlest Cowboy
Limited Edition Print
$60 postage included



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