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What materials do you use?
For my pastel portraits, I only draw on either Grey Pastelmat or White Pastelmat paper by Clairefontaine. I use a mixture of pastel sticks and pastel pencils. The main brands of pastel sticks I use are Unison Colour & Schmincke. For pastel pencils, I mainly use (in order), Stabilo Carbothello, Faber-Castell Pitt, Caran d’Ache, Derwent & Bruynzeel. I also use Sofft Tools to blend out my pastel layers.
I occasionally paint with oil paints & hope to soon start offering pet painting commissions in addition to my soft pastel portraits. The brands of oil paint I mainly use are Jackson’s Art, Pebeo XL and Winsor & Newton.
How did you get started with art?
I first started taking art lessons in high school and quickly found out that time went by much quicker in those lessons compared to most of my other classes. I spent more and more time in the art room, even spending most of my lunch breaks in there towards the end of my high school experience. I then went on to study illustration at university, however I found myself using the 3 years to build up my realistic drawing and painting skills in my spare time whenever I could instead of falling inlove with the abstract illustration field. After leaving university, I set up my own pet portrait art business and I’m still slowly growing it till this day. Pet portraits are great as you never know what animal or breed of dog / cat you’ll get to draw next, so each commission is and exciting first new experience. People love their pets so much!
What inspires you?
I would say that what inspires me the most is seeing all the other amazing artworks that other artists produce. As a lover of art, I appreciate skill and hard work when I see it. I am incredibly blown away by other artists creativity and craftsmanship on a daily basis. It gives me the motivation to keep pushing my skills as much as I can! I live in south Devon, England which is famous for its beautiful beaches, I’m definitely also inspired by the beauty of nature around me.
Do you teach art?
Yes! You can find many of my lessons on Patreon. There, you will learn my techniques and get a strong insight into my artistic methods. You may also check out my art tutorials page on this website (in the menu) for more information.
What colour paper will my commission be drawn on?
Pet Portraits: I always draw on grey or brown paper as I find them to be the most suitable. however if you wish to have a blank white background, I can of course draw your portrait on white paper.
People Portraits: People portraits are always created on white paper for any background option as its most suitable for drawing skin tones.
Do you use fixatives on your soft pastel artworks?
I don’t use any fixatives on my soft pastel artworks. This is mainly because all fixatives unfortunately ruin the colours and tones, and often leave the artwork with a dull appearance. All of my soft pastel artworks are drawn on Pastelmat paper by Clairefontaine which holds the pastel pigment very well on its own. To avoid smudging the artwork, it’s recommend to frame pastel artworks as soon as possible. It’s also important to make sure that there is a picture mount between the artwork & frame glass.
How long does it take you to create a portrait?
My pastel portraits can range anywhere from 15-80 drawing hours depending on the size and complexity. Art is a process that I don’t wish to rush, I prefer to spend more time than is needed to make sure I have the details down perfectly. It’s really important for me to achieve a true likeness in a portrait for my clients. I’m a huge perfectionist at heart!
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