How To Paint A Seascape With Soft Pastels | Myrto Gkizli | Skillshare

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How To Paint A Seascape With Soft Pastels

teacher avatar Myrto Gkizli, Myrto's Art Corner

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

13 Lessons (53m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Changing The Color Of The Paper

    • 3. Putting Down The Basic Elements Of The Painting

    • 4. Alcohol Wash

    • 5. Some Work On The Sky

    • 6. Some Work On The Sea

    • 7. Some Work On The Sand

    • 8. Back To The Sea For Details

    • 9. Some Work On The Hills

    • 10. Back To The Sky For Details

    • 11. Blending The Sky

    • 12. Final Details

    • 13. Outro

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About This Class

In this class you will learn how to create a seascape with soft pastels. 

The demonstration is almost in real time and the reference photo of the seascape I am painting is provided for you to download so that you can paint along with me and learn in the process.

The class is packed with information, tips and tricks on how to use your soft pastels effectively, how to proceed with your painting and improve your artworks.

By the end of this class, if you paint along, you will have a finished painting of a seascape, to put on your wall and be proud of! Even if you choose just to watch though, you will definitely have learnt a lot about soft pastels and quite a few techniques to use in the future and improve your paintings.

I will happily answer any question you may have and help with your painting if you need some guidance!

To learn how to film great art videos with your phone, check out my previous Skillshare class:

Meet Your Teacher

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Myrto Gkizli

Myrto's Art Corner



I'm Myrto, I'm from Greece and I'm an artist! I'm using all kinds of mediums and often switch between them!

Through my YouTube videos and my Skillshare classes, I want to share the knowledge I've accumulated through my art journey, to give back as much as I have received from these beautiful communities! Always open to criticism and suggestions, please let me know what else you'd like to see here and contact me if you need any help!

Thank you for visiting!

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1. Introduction: Hi everyone and welcome. I am good thought I'm an artist. And today in this tutorial, I am going to create this seascape in soft pastels for you to see. And if you'd like a copy as well, you can follow along because the video is very slow. It's almost in real time and it is packed with information, tips and tricks on how to create your own painting with the same reference photo, if you'd like. Of course, the reference photo was taken by me, so I will have it available for you to download and use for your own painting. As for the supplies I am using, I am using pastel much as my painting surface and soft pastels from Somalia, mainly Rembrandt but also Jackson. Have any questions whatsoever? Please feel free to ask them in the discussion below, I will answer each and everyone of them. That's all for now. Let's start painting and I will see you at the end of the tutorial. 2. Changing The Color Of The Paper: Okay, so for this specific painting, the very first thing I did was to completely change the color of the paper. This is completely optional. It's something that I rarely ever do for paintings, but I did it for this one. So I wanted to share everything and not hide anything from you since it is a tutorial. I had a blog post or matte paper at home. I didn't have any other column that would suit the specific painting and I didn't want the brown to show through and it wouldn't help me to get the vibrancy of the colors that I wanted. So I decided to go bold to take a very intense blue color and change the whole color of the paper with that soft pastel. The reason I did it was because I knew that the whole painting would have a tone of blue and purplish blue. So I knew that this would help me bring out the vibrant, nice blue colors all over the painting. I wanted to let it show towards some points, but even if it wasn't showing through, it would help me get the vibrancy I wanted and it wouldn't mute down the blues of the pay of the painting. Also, starting with a bold color like this, helped my brain even better to keep the colors intense and do not get, get shy with, let's say, for this process, I'm using a Jackson soft pastel and intense blue. It is on the purple side. I smushed it all over the paper and then I used alcohol is 70 percent alcohol to enter a brush as you can see, to make sure that the pigment would go smoothly all over the paper. This process pushes the pigment inside the tooth of the paper and he doesn't eat away the tooth. That means that even though it did a lot of soft pastel on there and I pushed it within the surface. It won't take away from the layers I will be able to put on the paper later on. If I were to smudge the soft pastel with my fingers or with a blending tool. It would take some of the tooth away. It would count as a base layer for the painting as far as how many layers I'm able to put on Postuma. 3. Putting Down The Basic Elements Of The Painting: Now the alcohol is completely dry and the pigment is set on the paper. I am ready to start my actual painting. As I said, you could have skipped that first part completely, especially if you had a Kugler of paper that would suit this painting specifically. So judge, for yourself, if you're ready to go with your paper as it is, or if you want to do the process exactly as I did it. Now you can see that I've already marked the horizon because I tend to mess it up. I actually used a ruler to mark the third of the page because I don't know why, but I always get that one wrong and I tend to bend the horizontal line and little bit. So knowing my weakness, I mark everything up front because I do want the horizon to be completely straight. And exactly at the third of the page. At this stage, you can see that I'm just adding main elements of the painting, basic shapes and basic colors. Noted it at all. I don't worry about any of that stuff just yet. I'm just putting my measurements down. I'm taking my time with it to make sure that everything is going to be correct. I'm just trying to be as accurate as possible with the idea what I'm trying to convey on this painting. I have already decided to remove some of the heels on the ground. You may see them on, on the reference photo, but I will not put them on my painting. You can decide for yourself whether you want to use them or not in your painting if you choose to work with this reference. But these are some of the choices that I make to simplify my paintings, to make sure that the focus of the viewer, the eye of the viewer is drawn exactly where I wanted to. I also decided to remove some of the buildings on the shore for the exact same reason because that white, I was taken away the attention from the sky, which I want to be the main focal point of the painting. I would encourage you to feel free to change your reference photos as you see fit. You don't always have to copy everything. Not everything has to be exactly as it is on a reference photo. It's actually good to free yourself from that. Need to copy everything. In my opinion. In this way you will for your mind to even combine for those later on. And you don't always have to look around the internet to find exactly what you're looking for. If you can manage to change it as you see fit, you can take a basic idea from one reference photo and create a painting that is completely your own, completely unique, and create something that will be completely yours. You shouldn't be afraid to use your creative license and do what feels right, even if that means changing the reference photo completely. In this case, I'm not changing that much. And that's useful because I wanted you to see and to have the same reference photo to work from. But sometimes I do, I may completely change the photo on the colors, on the elements included on a lot of things. Anyhow, that's up to you to decide whether you want to do the same or not. It's just a suggestion to try and experiment as much as possible on this same idea in mind, you shouldn't be afraid to use bold colors, sometimes, especially with pastels, it's easy to turn them down later on if you feel that they are too bold or too intense for you. But having a nice, vibrant base underneath is always a good way to keep your paintings alive and passionate. Let's say. Now, as for the process, this part of the painting is just to put down the basic shapes and values. As I said earlier, no details us at all. You will see that I just have finished everything. Make sure that everything is in place before I move on to adding in more detail on specific areas of the painting, I have decided to keep pretty much the colors of the paint of the reference photo. So you will see that I use mainly purples and blues on the sky. Green blues and Turk was to quiz on the C. And I will keep the sand fairly neutral with some purple in it, with some of the blue of the background peeking through the sand. But I don't want it to take away the attention of the focal points. So I just use neutral tones on the sand mainly because I just wanted to be there obviously to complete the composition. But I don't want it to be intense at all compared to the sea and the sky. Now, using the background color that I have chosen and a variety of very similar colors as you see me using a specially on this guy will add a variety that is very important to make your paintings look realistic, look natural. Let's say. Even if it's a slight difference between the colors and it might not be exactly visible with the eye. It always make sense to use as much variety of similar colors as possible. If you want to, if you wanted to feel natural. Sky like this or like this, will not have the same color flat all over the place. So by using a variety of colors, you can achieve that without actually putting a lot of effort on trying to pinpoint exactly where each color is. You can also see here that I have already picked the colors that I want to use in a separate palette. That's for my convenience mainly I don't want to look around for exact color that I'm trying to pinpoint at any given time during my painting process because it takes away my attention. But it's also because I tend to use to do tests and color studies. Before I start with the painting, I have tried different combinations of colors and I have eaten, experimented with unconventional color choices for the specific reference photo. And even the way they decided to go with mainly the colors of the photo. I didn't settle on that before trying everything that could come to my mind that I thought would be interesting. So through my studies, I pick my colors and then I put them in a separate palette to have them convenient and in front of me so that I don't get confused and die. Don't waste time looking for my colors. During my painting process, I may add or remove colors from this palette. Obviously during the process, if I decide that I want something more or something less, but it's much faster and less time consuming to look for one color instead of looking for every one of them during your painting. Anyhow, now that my main colors are down, I have noticed that the dark blues didn't blend exactly as they wanted them. So I will go ahead and add another alcohol wash specifically on these areas. 4. Alcohol Wash: This is actually my second alcohol wash for this painting, since the first one on the whole page. And I will take this opportunity to let you know that you can do an alcohol wash whenever you feel that it is necessary for your painting. You can do it locally to as I do it in this specific occasion. But you can also go all over the painting. Again if you feel like that there is a reason to that, it will help you achieve your goal for the painting. That there is an idea that in this case it was because the dark colors didn't quite. I'm staying on the paper the way I wanted them. So I wanted to blend them together and make sure they are smooth. And because I know that if I use an alcohol wash, the pigment will be pushed within the paper, has said earlier, and then when I go over them with brighter colors, they won't smudge, they won't get contaminated. They will stay vibrant and even if the darkest color is peeking through from underneath, it will not blend together with them. It will be easier for me to keep my lighter colors vibrant, intense, and alive without the darkest colors underneath interfering with that. 5. Some Work On The Sky: While I wait for the second alcohol wash to dry, I can keep working in the rest of my painting without an issue. I have decided to go on the sky a little bit first and started defining, defining the clouds so that my eye has something to grab on wireless work on the rest of the painting. I always want to have a comparison. That's why I like to work on the whole painting altogether. Because by comparing values and colors as you work on your painting, you can decide if you want to change something or if you weren't to work on something a little bit more, It's much easier that way. Here you can see that I am slowly defining the Cloud using different colors, hues, values, and tropes. I am using a lot of them because in this situation, it's, the more, the better. As I said earlier, a lot of variety in the clouds are, is important because that's how they are in nature as well. They keep changing and shifting and even if you can't copy or if you don't want to copy everything exactly, their variety will help you make them look more natural. I am pig paying close attention to the reference photo at this stage, I am not letting it limit me, but I am letting it helped me. Because especially with skies, I find that it is quite easy to mess something up unintentionally. And I find myself trying to figure out what is going on and can't exactly pinpoint that if I'm not paying close attention to my reference photo, especially with dramatic skies like that. Changing something even more may make this look a little bit off. So I'm trying to keep it as close as possible to the reference without of course, letting that stress me. I am trying to use my strokes mindfully to be as close as possible to the movement and the strokes of the sky as I see them in my reference so that I get the same atmosphere. I'm doing that because that's my focal point of the painting as I said earlier. And that's what I want to keep as dramatic as it can be according to my reference. At this stage. And especially for things like that, for things like the sky for example, like that, that you want everything to be smooth. Having actually really soft pastels can be very, very helpful. Even with a softer touch on the Bastille Matt, I live pigment on the paper without leaving behind harsh marks. When I actually blend them all together, I won't have to fight the pigment to move it around. Hardware pastels tend to leave a harsher strokes on the paper, which can be very helpful for some things, but not for things like that. The sky is smooth without her slums, usually. So having soft pastels will make your life a lot easier. At this stage of the painting, you just touch lightly on the paper, the soft pastel, and it leaves the pigment exactly as you want it to be left. Going back and forth with colors, similar colors or different hues of the same color is especially helpful as well if you want to create the variety as I was talking about earlier, you don't always have to get the first stroke moving around the pigment, overlapping colors. All of these things can help you achieve some variety very naturally. Lastly, you can see here that especially in this situation, that change I did at the start on the color of the paper helps me tremendously because I would be fighting the brown of the paper and it would interfere with my purples and my blues in a way that wouldn't be helping me achieve the intense colors that I want to achieve. 6. Some Work On The Sea: Now that the colors of my sky are all filled in, even if they're not blended together, I can move on and work a little bit more on the sea. As I said earlier, I'm moving around the painting working and little bit on each separate area at the same time so that I can judge one with each other next to it. In the sea, I am using greenish blues tear quiz and a little bit of neutral tones closer to the shore together with a little bit of neutral purples. Because right there the sand is showing through the water and it's changing the color of the sea. You can see that the closer we are to the horizon line, The further away our eye moves that darker the color of the seed looks. At the horizon line. The waters are dark blue and the sky above is much lighter, even if it is a gloomy day, a dark sky, actually, even that case, the water does look darker than the sky above. And that's exactly what I meant when I said that we need all of them to be worked on together so that we can judge our values and our colors even better. Knowing that when I have them next to each other, one is darker than the other, or one is a little bit more purple than the other, and so on, is helping us decide on our colors and our values and the shapes that we want to use. To do that even better, It's good to stand up and look. You're painting from further away very often throughout your process. I know it can be a little bit boring, but if you stand up and look at your painting from, I don't know, ten feet away, even it's so much easier to see what you have done wrong if you have some value wrong, if something should be darker or lighter or even mistakes and your composition. As for your values, it's also very helpful to take a photo of your painting. Turn it into black and white. If you have a hard time judging your values, having the painting in black and white, we'll make it a lot easier to see what color is darker than the next core. Or because sometimes if the colors are completely different from each other, it's very hard to actually see which one is darker and which one is lighter. It's not always as easy as it sounds to know which color is which. So one, you can stand up and look from afar to you can take a photo and turn it into black and white. Also, squinting your eyes helps a lot to flutter with the details, let's say, and actually see the basic shapes and values of your painting. Now, on the sea, I know that I have a dark blue on the horizon. As I said, I know that I need neutral close to the shore, but I also know that I need light grays and pinks and blues because there is a lot of foam on the tips of the waves. I will even use white later on for that. But for now, I'm just setting the background for that. I need the darker hues underneath in order to go on top of them with lighter colors afterwards because that's exactly how it is. See, you have the dark water underneath and then you have the sea foam above it. So we do the same with pastels and achieve the same result. You can see here as well. But I am very gently touching my prepare. I am letting the texture be created because of the soft pastels. It actually does the work for me. I don't really draw anything specifically with detail, with attention, putting your past along the paper, we leave behind some texture that will create the illusion of detail without actually putting the effort to put on every single detail in there. The trick is to create the illusion of detail, to create the illusion of what you want to be depicted and let them lead the viewer's eye, fill in the rest. You don't have to be precise all the time. You don't have to look every teeny tiny detail and painted. If you create the illusion of detail, if you put in the effort to get your values correct and to imply that there is something there, it's usually enough for the viewers eye to fill in the rest and understand what you painted. For this reason, I am making sure that my strokes are correct in the direction of the water. I want the flow of the water to feel natural, but I am not actually painting every little thing, as I said earlier. Now again, going back and forth with different colors will help you have some variety here as well. And as usual with pastels, you don't have to get everything right on the first go. It actually is better to not get everything right on the first go because adding colors on top will help you with variety as well, even if you thought it was a mistake and it was sending you back in time, it doesn't matter. That's why pastels are so fun. It's like having an undo button, as a friend of mine says, it's so helpful to know that if you mess something up, you're always able to fix it later. Even if you see that your paper is not longer taking any more pustule, you can go over it with an alcohol wash and then the pigment will be pushed through within the paper and you can go over them and try once more to get your painting the way you want it to be. Keep experimenting, keep trying, keep going back and forth, keep fixed and what you see that needs fixing and things will eventually work out the way you want. 7. Some Work On The Sand: Even though I know that perceives far from Dan, I need to add a lot of detail on it. I am deciding to move on to the beach and the sand for a little while. I want to work on that so that I can go back to the sea and read judge, everything that I have already done. Having the sand pretty much completed will help me judge and evaluate what I have done so far. Now there, I'm using mainly neutral terms, as I said earlier. First of all, because it's sand and the color of the sand is neutral anyway, but also because I don't want the attention of the viewer to be drawn to the beach. I wanted to exist, but I don't want it to be the focal point. I wanted to just exist to help the rest of the painting come to life. I am also deciding to put inside there some purples because the color of the sky would be somehow reflected on the wet sand. But also because I just want to bring the painting to a tie. I want it all to be combined together and to feel like parts of a unified painting. I don't want the beach to be like it was taken from other braiding and put inside this one. So using colors of the same family or similar colors on different areas of your painting will make it all come together and look like they belong together. It's very important to do, even if it feels a little bit room, even if the colors aren't actually what they need to be, even different compositions where it's harder to do putting a color here and there hidden with all, within all areas of the painting. We'll just unify it and bring it all together. Trade and see for yourself how well it works. Most of the times. Be careful not to overdo it obviously, but it's, it works like magic. It brings the painting altogether on the sand. I am also deciding to let some of the paper show through. I'm not sure if that's visible on the video, to be honest, but I am doing it somehow. The blue of the paper will show through and I don't mind that. I don't blend it in. I don't make sure it disappears because I wanted to show through it's part of my choices, the choices I make so that the painting is unified. Now, I am also doing some experimentation, and I don't mind showing that to you because I do believe strongly that it is part of the process. Experimenting and changing things, fixing your own mistakes during the process is part of the process. It's not something to be ashamed of or change. To try and change. It's always good to try new things and see what works and what doesn't. I go back and forth with different tones of the same colors because it feels like it would work. I see that it doesn't end. I just keep going back and forth until I find the balance that I like and that I want to keep. And that's okay to do. Here is well, software pastels are making the process much, much easier for me. And I will take this opportunity to say that materials are quite important when it comes to pastels. I find the software pastels like this and earlier I'm using here have made my life so much easier and my paintings so much better. And same goes for pastel Mac, because it is able to take a lot of layers. I think sounded papers are the same. I haven't had the luck to try some sandpaper yet, but I so much wanted to because I know they take a lot of layers, but if your paper is not good enough, if your paper can't take enough layers, it will make your process much harder. That doesn't mean that you have to stop or not using at all if you don't have the access to better materials. But it would be nice to invest in better materials, especially with pastels because it will be a huge improvement to your art. Do what you can do with what we have. That's always what I say, but I would suggest trying out better materials to see how much of a difference it can make. Lastly, with the sand, I am deciding not to put any detail at all for the same reason as I said earlier because I don't want the eye to be drawn to the sand. There isn't much detail to start with, but even if there were, I wouldn't have it. I just wanted to be neutral and be there to stand and help the rest of the painting come to life. It's the same reason why I chose a square composition for that. Because if the sound was a lot more, if I was standing further back and let the beach take up half of the painting, it would have taken the attention away from the sky and the horizon line, which is exactly where I want the attention of the painting to be. So composition, detail, Hue, and Saturation can help you put the focal point of a painting is exactly where you want it to be. 8. Back To The Sea For Details: And we're finally reaching the fun part of the painting. At this stage, I go back to the sea and pretty much finish it off. To be honest, I had everything that I want to add anti start seeing the painting come to life, which is very fun and very motivational and very inspiring to keep you going and finish the whole painting. The first stages can be a little bit tedious, a little bit filled with uncertainty because you can't know what will come up and if it will all work out in the end. But once you start putting in the final layers on a part of the painting, you can see the light at the end of the tunnel and feel the motivation to finish off the rest of the painting as well. And you start getting glimpses of the final painting, which is also quite awesome. So I am starting with C, as I said, and specifically the waves, the sea foam, and technically what will be the brightest parts of the painting. Pretty much. I am using very, very light, bright blues, purples and even white. You'll see me using the end because I want the tips of the waves to feel three-dimensional and to really catch the eye. As you saw earlier, I have already added the dark blue beneath, which adds a lot of volume to the wave and adds to the depth of the seed, makes the water feel three-dimensional and look three-dimensional. And it also makes the lighter colors that I will, I'm putting above it look brighter and stand out. At this stage is also the first stage of the painting that I am using the tips of my pastels. I am no longer just smudging everything at all times. I am doing it, but not at all times because when I want specific details I am using the tips are the tip of the pastel. Or even if I'm using this side, I am not always smudging it. With soft pastels. Firm touch on the pastel paper will live a nice, clean, pure mark without you having to moving it around, to move it around. In this way, you leave the pigment of the soft pastel on the paper pure and uncontaminated. It doesn't blend in with the colors underneath. So you get vibrant, intense, and clean colors the way you want them to be, if that's what you want. Of course. In this case, the tips of the waves and the form are actually bright, nice clean colors. And I wouldn't want the darker colors underneath interfering with that. So the software plus Delta helping me a lot with that. I am paying very close attention to my reference here to make sure that my markings are correct. The direction of the flow of the water is correct. Because that's very, very important to make it look realistic. I am trying my best not to create repetitive patterns and use the same markings over and over again because that would look staged and would make the water look unnatural. The loser you can be here, the less repetitive and a little bit random. Ness helps a lot with painting look natural. Especially when it comes to waters are skies because everything is unpredictable there. Nothing is actually set in stone. Nothing is so repetitive that even if you're a bit the same thing twice, it may look unnatural to the eye. And even if you're not able to pinpoint what exactly is wrong, you will feel that something is wrong. So stay random, stay spontaneous, and make sure you move around your pastels and turn them around and use the other side to avoid repetitive marks and any kind of repetition and symmetry in your paintings. The trickiest part for me on this painting, and it may be for you as well. Was that stripe of sand that was very weird because of the last way that was pulled back. But trap of sound was something in-between. The turquoise of the sea and the purple of the sky, together with a neutral tones of the sand. And it was dark but not very dark. And I even I had a hard time figuring everything out and making it look exactly as I wanted it to look. I just took my time with it. You will see that I go back and forth a lot of times with it trying to see what needs improvement. I stand up a lot at this stage. Looking from afar, make drained my best to figure out how to solve this puzzle and actually make it look as I want it to look and I manage it in the end. And that's why I said earlier, you just have to keep working at it. Don't give up and remove and remove, go back and forth with different colors, slight changes, and at some point you will figure it out and it will turn out exactly as you want it. In the end, a little bit of purple, pink and even green. Pr chops in the sea, ties it up with the rest of the painting together and also add some interest and depth to the water. Bold colors, even if they're not that obvious in your painting, will make all the difference in the world to make your painting look alive and unique. Sometimes the weirdest colors can be found in the weirdest places, like an olive green within the C, or a bright pink or a hidden purple underneath the wave. And that what we all make your painting stand out and be unique. That's also what makes nature so beautiful. So don't be afraid to be bold. Don't be afraid to use something unusual and see if that will work. If you don't experiment, you'll never find out. If you feel too uncomfortable doing that on your painting. You can do this on your color studies, but just go for it. Be bold, be daring, and it will pay off in the long run. 9. Some Work On The Hills: The only part of the painting that I have neglected so far, worse, the mountains, the hills and the trees of the horizon. And I thought it was about my work, some on them as well, which is just a little bit for now. I will go back to them in the end of the painting goes, They're not that big. And as important to be honest, I just want to do some things so that I know that they are there and see how I will blend them with the whole painting in the end. Just not too much. I want them to exist. It helps with the composition, but as the sound, as I said earlier about the sand as well, I don't want them to draw any attention. So I will do just enough to make them come to life and feel realistic. I will make sure that they're not flat or to neglect it, but I don't want them to be the protagonist of this painting. I don't want them to be the focal point. I just want them to help everything come together. Also, I do realize that the trees are extremely big. I don't know how I missed that the whole time. I had my focus on the other component of the painting. But that's okay. You will see that I will fix it in the end in just half a minute or so. So that's fine. I am. And it's a good opportunity to see how everything can be fixed with pastels and you shouldn't be worried too much. Every single thing. 10. Back To The Sky For Details: It's finally time to refine the sky as well. Now that everything else is pretty much complete, I can start working on the sky and know what works and what doesn't. Since this guy was going to be the focal point of the painting since the beginning, I left it last because having everything else pretty much complete will be very helpful now that I want to turn my values, the mood of the painting, the atmosphere that colors all of that. I am using a variety of blues, purples, blues and purples. And just a hint of pink in the sky because I want to keep it dramatic. That's pretty much eat. I am barely using any gray even if there is some in the reference photo, because it was my choice to have this painting look vibrant and alive and to be based on blue. Mainly. It was a choice that I made for my own pointing. And that's quite important as well to know what your goal is with your painting. Knowing that will help you make better decisions throughout the process. If you want something to look a certain way, you will know what choices you have to make to achieve that. If you start a painting and you don't know what your end goal is, you will only make it harder for yourself throughout the process to make decisions that need to be done. For me here, color was a very important part. Part. That's why I chose the intense blue at the beginning. That's why I'm not putting any grays in here. That's why I put blues as the main characteristic of this painting. That's why I chose to put purple within the sand. That's where he made all of these choices and that's all because I knew what I wanted to achieve. So keep that in mind in order to create nice paintings, you have to know what your goal is since you're beginning. Now at this stage as well, I am keeping a very close eye to my reference, maybe most of them ever because this guy was the reason I chose the reference. So even if I chose to change some things and make different decisions for other parts of the painting. That's definitely not the same thing. The sky was the focal point of the reference photo. This guy was the reason I bought. I chose this reference photo. So obviously I wanted to keep it as close to the reference as possible. It is dramatic enough already. I want to make it even more dramatic if I can, but I definitely want to keep it close to the reference photo. So that's another choice you have to make. When you take a reference photo in your hands, you have to know what you want to change and what do you want to keep. And make sure that when you're working in the things that you want to keep from your reference photo, you have to pay very close attention to the reference photo. Anyway, I am trying to blend the colors together to get even more variety with limited amount of color. And I mainly focusing on direction and movement. That sky looks like, like it is moving while we look at it, it has it has a very unique atmosphere. It's gloomy but also vibrant. It's, it's definitely not a skier that will be the same ten minutes later. That's obvious. So I want to try to convey that to my painting as well. So I'm painting, I'm paying very close attention to the direction of the strokes, the movement of the sky. And try to achieve that by putting the right colors and values at the right places. Occasionally you will see that I transfer some of these colors on the rest of the painting as well. Because what I said earlier is still true and he may be finished with the rest of the painting, but putting some colors from the sky to the sand and the sea will help me tie them all together and feel like separate, separate parts of a whole. I don't want them to feel like they've all come together from different paintings. I want them to be obviously part of the same painting. And using the same colors all over will help me achieve that. Naturally, the colors of the sky reflected on the water. So that's even easier to do on this specific occasion. You may notice that at this stage, this process definitely looks like a mess. It looks like I'm just putting color everywhere, moving back and forth, changing, color, changing Hughes, picking up different pastels in random and putting them on the sky. But it isn't that It's unnecessary, ugly stage in order to reach the final result. And it can be a scary stage and it can feel like a mess. It can feel like you're not getting anywhere with just putting colors everywhere and moving around and prefixing the same areas again and again. Trust me, it's part of the process and it's a very important one. I think that having the right mindset is equally important as having the right skills in art. So knowing that this is part of the process will help you reach your end goal. The more practice you have and the more experience you have after a time, the more this stage becomes easier because you've seen it before and you know that you go to the other side, a winner. So having that experience in you is very important. In order to push through. As a beginner though, this stage can be very, very overwhelming and disappointing. It can feel like you want to give up and you will never achieve the result you want. But the secret to that is to keep pushing. You have nothing to lose, even if it doesn't work out in the end, you have actually learned something through the process, and that's extremely important as well. So look at what I'm doing and see for yourself that it doesn't all look pretty all the time. You just post through you. From experience. You sometimes will know what will work and what won't. But even if it does look bad, just keep pushing. I promise you, with more experience, this stage will feel better as well. What you don't see me do here, which is something that I actually do, is that I stand up often, unlock my painting from afar. Obviously, I have edited out all these parts where you would just look at a screen and nothing would happen for a minute because I'm up there looking from afar. I cut out all these parts for your sake because I value your time. But it's there. I am often standing up, looking from a fire, coming back, adding a few strokes, standing up going from a fire and so on and so forth. Just because you don't see it, it doesn't mean it doesn't happen. And I think other artists, I'm sure other artists are doing it as well. But watching a video like this makes it as if it doesn't happen because I think we all added all these parts out because they're boring. So do that and you will realize that it is very, very, very important and very valuable. 11. Blending The Sky: Now, well, over time I have become a huge fan of texture in paintings. And I love seeing the strokes and different colors peeking through. And I don't blend a lot anymore. I do blend when it comes to skies like this. I don't mind it if not every detail is shown. A well blended, smooth sky, for me is much better than a textured one. Especially when you want the fluffiness of the clouds and gloomy atmosphere like this one. I personally prefer a well blended sky. Now, that's obviously a personal thing. It's personal preference as most of the things in art are. But anyway, it's up to you to decide whether you want to blend at this point or not. So don't take my word for it. Just decide for yourself. If you need to wait until this part is finished and go back to the start of this. And just going back and forth in the video, we'll make it obvious to you what the change is and if it is something that you want to do in your painting as well. For me, even with the blue showing through from underneath, even though the colors are pretty much correct at the whole sky. The texture and those little graininess, let's say, is not something that I enjoy. I very much believe that the sky after the blending is much better than it is before. But again, go see for yourself and make that decision for your painting, as is your own personal taste and not mine. If you do decide to blend, be patient, use. Nice, smooth, small strokes. Don't overdo it very fast. Take your time with it and use the blending tool of your choice. My fingers are my tool and is something that I usually prefer to use. I have used blending stumps, soft tools, Q-tips, sponges, all kinds of things. But I think that using my fingers pushes the pigment within the paper much better than any other tool. It gives me much more control than any other tool. I get the choose the strokes that I want to use in order to move the pigment around and make it go to the areas that I wanted to go. It lets me choose what colors I want to blend together. And generally, it doesn't create dust. It just let the pigment see it on the paper and doesn't really lifted off. When I use other blending tools, I find that some of the pigment is actually removed and dropped off and not that that doesn't happen with my fingers, so that's my preference. And obviously different kinds of tools, we will work very differently on different kinds of papers. So depending on your materials, your soft pastels, your paper, and your tools, that's up to you again to decide what will work best for you. If you don't feel comfortable using something, just don't use it. Because I do. In this blending process, obviously we lose a lot of detail, but we will go over it again and put it on the way we wanted to. So don't be worried about that. That's okay. You lose some detail, you get it back afterwards and that's part of the process as well. Anyway, be intentional with your strokes, make sure that you move the pigment exactly as you want it to be moved using whatever tools work best for you. And let's get to the last part of this painting, which is the most vulnerable as well. 12. Final Details: For me, this part of the process is the most fun. As I said earlier. It actually, it's like seeing all your efforts finally paying off and you're painting is coming alive. It's also a very slow process. And even if it takes a lot of time here you will see it will be a little bit sped up, but it was even slower because especially now I am often standing up. I am often even leaving the room for a while and coming back to see the painting with fresh eyes in order to make the correct decisions. I am being very slow, very methodic, and very specific with my decisions now because these are the final decisions, you can always just remove and fix something again as always. But what I mean is that these are the decisions that most matter from the painting. You'd say the highlights, the bolder colors, what you want to be smooth and blended and what you want to be sharp and catch the attention of the viewer. It's what we'll put the painting altogether and bring it to life and make your efforts so far payoff. It's also about time I noticed the wrong tree size and fixed it. Finally because when I was re-watching the video, I couldn't stand looking at those trees and knowing that it would be it wouldn't be until this stage that I fixed. It was annoying. But, you know, you gotta do what do I do? I fixed it finally, I kinda like it because you get to see how easy it is to fix mistakes with pastels. And this is the reason why I love them so much. And I tell people that they should give them a go. And even if you have a hard time at the beginning, it's just a matter of time before you find out how to fix things and get them work the way you want them to. So well, it was a mistake that paid off because I got to show you exactly what I wanted to show you in the end. I'm also finally spending some extra time on the heels and the horizon line because earlier, I don't I've only spent like a minute or two on it. I just put on some colors and left it. So now I'm doing the final decisions about that as well. I am trying to use muted colors, but a little bit of greenish and grays, just to hint that there are trees there, but I don't want them to be intense colors. First of all, the further away an object is, the more muted it is, and colder in tone. But other than that, it's also a very intentional decision because I don't want them to draw any attention. I do want them to look realistic though. So I have a, so I go back and forth with different colors because obviously a hill like that or a bunch of trees, we'll have a lot of different huge variety of colors in them. I don't want to take that away. I just want to take away the brightest colors and the boulder course and the more saturated ones that are in the reference, I skip those. And that way I have the product that I need. But no more than that, I'm trying out to add a hint of seashells on the Sanders. Well, I smudge some of them. I do the process, as I said, over and over again, making my final decisions. Now, even when I'm completely done with the painting and I consider it finished, I sometimes even sign it actually. I even later to see it on my easel for the rest of the day, even the next day as well. Because if you stand too close to a painting for a very long time And do you work on it? You can miss things that are very obviously wrong as I did with a tree. If I hadn't stood up and looked from afar, I maybe I would have missed that the tree is worse, so completely wrong. And that's to show you how we can get absorbed in details and a part of the painting and completely miss something else that definitely needs fixing. So living your painting like that on the easel, going to do something completely irrelevant, get out of their own, do your thing, have lunch, whatever, and then come back with fresh eyes to take a better look and see if something's strikes as wrong or as it needs fixing. This is a practice that at the beginning seemed very odd to me and I was very impatient to take it off the cylinder, take photographs and scan it. But now I realize how important it is. Even more than a day. So people leave it for weeks or months. But whatever, just take your time to make sure that you get a fresh look on your painting. When your eyes are arrested, when your attention has gone somewhere else and has completely forgotten about the process. Because you will have the opportunity to look at your painting as a viewer that wasn't the creator of the painting, so to speak, you will notice things that will catch your attention whether you want it or not, because you won't be focused on something else at the time. Well, anyway, I know I'm rambling sometimes. Just it's just a practice that I highly recommend. You try. And yeah, This painting is now finished. I hope you liked it. I hope you enjoyed it. I will see you in the next part for closing up this whole tutorial and see, you know, well. 13. Outro: And that's how we did it. The painting is finished. I hope you did follow along and you've painted your own painting as well. Thank you for watching so far. There was a long video and I know it took a lot of patients to stick with me and listen to everything that I had to say about this painting. If you followed along and you have your own painting in your hands, please share it with us. I would love to see what you created. And even if you use a different reference photo and you are here just for the tips and tricks. That's fine to share whatever you have created. I would love to see all of them. Thank you once more for watching. Thank you for sticking with me and I hope you got some useful information from this tutorial. I hope to see you again soon on my future classes until then, be safe, be happy and keep going for your dreams.