Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Continuing Adventures With Pastelbord, colored pencil WIP

more work on this colored pencil portrat
11" x 14" on pastelbord

Is it just me or does it feel like Christmas is approaching at warp speed? I'm not even done with my Christmas shopping yet! AND we don't have any snow on the ground. . . and I live in Utah! Home of the 2002 Winter Olympics. And we are currently in a snow famine. Man, what a bummer.

But, it is still such a magical time isn't it? Every time I hear my boys talk about Santa, or watch them look at photos of past Christmases I get so excited. I LOVE Christmas time.

Of course I had planned all kinds of festive Christmas paintings, but haven't seemed to have the time to get to any of them, except the jingle bells. Which is fine by me, since I'd rather be decorating my Christmas tree and making treats with my family anyway. Chocolate covered salted caramels anyone? Oh, wait, they're all gone. Sorry! :)

I'm also working on a super secret commission that I don't dare post until after Christmas, since it's a gift. It's turning out nicely, I'm pretty happy with it. But constantly plagued by the fear that the next brushstroke I place will ruin it and I'll have to start over!

So, any extra positive vibes you may have, feel free to send em my way. :)

In between all of that I got this older colored pencil piece out and started working on it again. I always forget how much I enjoy working with colored pencils until I have one in my hand again. Very therapeutuic and meditative. And lots of fun.

So, I'm off my friends. Hope you're all having a wonderful Holiday season! And next time I make chocolate covered salted caramels I promise to save you one. . . Or at least take a picture of them. :)


And if you're looking for a one of a kind Christmas gift I'm having a holiday sale on all the items in my Etsy shop until December 18. There's a variety of paintings and drawings, all originals. Just use this coupon code TTTEAM20 at checkout. :)


  1. WOW!! AN OUTSTANDING work of art! i thought you were working in pastels it's so rich! beautiful light and shadow.

    and as far as the commission piece, focus on what you're doing and it will be perfect as always. i find if i'm worrying about the outcome, there's no room to think about the process...but i always do worry, so take my advice, i'm not using it! :0)

    wonderful work as always crystal!

  2. Love stopping by to see your beautiful work!! And yes, I think we're at warp 9 for Christmas!!

  3. To say that you are gifted will be the understatement of the year.. I just love how this is coming along. And its time for me to say Huzzah..

  4. A 'snow famine' - what a good way to state it. I hope we get a little something for Christmas.

    *sending good vibes* I can't wait to see the finished commission.

  5. Wow - this CP portrait is lookin' smashing so far, Crystal!

    I have no doubt that your secret commission will turn out successfully; just keep on with the process, and the outcome will just fall into place naturally :).

  6. Crystal, the pencil portrait is superb, even unfinished! I know your secret commission will be fabulous.

  7. Hi Crystal, I am in love with your pencil portrait, so incredible....and can't wait to see your secret portrait when you can share with us. Try to enjoy the season the little ones grow so quickly, and Christmas is never quite the same!

  8. The portrait is progressing so beautifully, Crystal. I know what you mean about not doing a Christmas painting. I was planning to paint my own cards this year and did that happen....NOOOOOOOO! Couldn't decide on a design, not that I ever really worked that hard on finding one; nothing just inspired me. Hmmm, maybe I should have just had a blank front of the card and put a sentiment inside. Sort of the reverse of one of those blank cards with a picture on front where you add your own sentiment. You draw your own picture on front. Send it with a little sketch pencil. Oh no, another weird idea from Carol...LOL
    Guess that's what happens when you don't sleep after a very busy night at work. LOL My mantra is "to sleep....perchance to dream" and both elude me. Hope you are having a great day.

  9. Crystal, your skin tones are to die for! Marvellous!

  10. Crystal, this is beyond gorgeous!!! The light you capture is magical!!! Just amazing! Can not wait to see this finished. Christmas is definitely approaching at warp speed!! Good Luck:))

  11. Ditto everything above, Crystal...that portrait is drop dead gorgeous...and you're telling us it isn't finished...just gorgeous skin. Love it.

  12. Beautiful work as always! You always make me want to get out my watercolors, now you have me wanting to buy new colored pencils. Maybe I should add them to my Christmas list. I know your commission piece is going to be beautiful, can't wait to see it.

  13. Crystal! This is amazing, like all of your other work:) You are just amazing at capturing life in your artwork! I can't wait to see how this one turns out. And I love reading your blog! You definitely got me into the Christmas spirit, and yes, it is coming full speed ahead! haha.. Do take a picture of those caramels! lol

  14. Oh Crystal, your kids' faces are so beautiful! What ever happened with that unfinished one a few posts back? I loved what you wrote about it - curious to see its progress. Am sure you are overloaded this time of year but want to put a bug in your ear...How about an update!
    Happy holiday planning. ♥

  15. The painting is stunning to say the least. Somehow I feel it looks best in this patially finished condition. The smile and the eyes are all hat can be seen and they really are the heart of the painting, aren't they? But then the finished work might be even better. So I keep my fingers crossed until you finish this one. Also cant wait to see the commissioned painting finished.
    Wish you happy holiday season.

  16. I also love the wonderful value transitions in the hair. :)

  17. Golly, how gorgeous this pencil work is! You do have extraordinary talent. xx

  18. What a wonderful portrait, and delicate colors!marvelous!

  19. I looked at your sale and I love them all :0) A question though... I notice that you aren't selling any portraits of your own children - and why would you? Of course these are your own treasures to keep! So - I wondered why you are selling your own self-portrait? I am SURE that your children would love to have this when they're older and I'm sure they would treasure it too!
    Okay, now I have that question out of the way - This drawing is simply jaw-dropping! Even unfinished it really is breath-taking! There doesn't seem to be a medium that you haven't mastered! :0)

  20. Sending lots of positive vibes your way! Can't imagine the kind of pressure there is in creating these pulse beating luminous paintings of yours.
    I'm with you, my shoppings not done and I can't believe how fast the time has gone.
    Enjoy that family of yours and the wonder of the Season!

  21. This is such a lovely portrait Crystal. Great skin colours.
    Good luck with the commission.
    I know it will turn out fine!

  22. I love working with my colored pencils but my work never looks this good. This is going to be stunning when it's completed. It is beautiful even now. Enjoy your Christmas. Hugs

  23. I'M SPEECHLESS, Crystal!! This is so beautiful...definitely one of my favorites!! (until your next painting!!) I look forward to seeing this finished!!

  24. The little thumbnail on my sidebar just GRABBED ME and here I am to say what a beautiful work this is.
    Surprised to learn it's colored pencil. Babies are hard to do with any success but you nail it every time.
    Merry Christmas.....reaching for a chocolate salted ....oh never mind ;)

  25. Stunning art work!

    Saying hi and following from Etsy : )



Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment they really do mean so much to me! Because not all bloggers have their email enabled so I can reply directly through email I will try to reply here in the comments. If I don't please forgive me, life must have been hectic that day! :)) Huzzah!!

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