Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Masai Update

I've worked a little more on this portrait.  The beadwork is slow going so I'm taking my time.  I feel as if I'm making this necklace myself!

Sometimes people have challenges using black paper and it seems that the colours almost sink into it, making them appear duller or more muted.  I don't think that the pigment can actually move into the fibre of the paper.  I believe its more a trick of the eye with lighting and viewer position as well as the black paper not letting the colour reflect as it should.  However, if someone has a scientific reason behind the theory of colour and black paper, I'd love to hear it.

I've experimented a bit more with photographing dark paper under artificial light and in this image I used the TV setting.  In TV mode I select the shutter speed and the camera selects the appropriate aperture and the quicker shutter speed seems to make a difference with the black paper.  I don't get the same level of glare back from it.


Gordon Pritchard (a.k.a. gordo) said...

Does this version look closer to what your image looks like?

Are you using any image editing application? Are you on a PC or MAC? Maybe I can help.

VK said...

Watercolor does sink into the fibres but pastel sits on top. Are you using a waxy pencil? That *might* explain it as white pigment bound in wax does not have the covering power of pastels (bound in gum) or oil pastels.

Jeanette said...

Thanks Gordon and yes your adjusted version is more like the original. The black is truer.

And I'm on a PC using Photoshop. I just haven't got patience for fiddling around with images, that's my problem. But I know I should to get a better representation of the work.

VK, yes I can see how waterbased pigments may sink into paper but not dry. The Derwent pencils are wax based as are most coloured pencils, but are a bit less waxy than some brands. I don't think the colours are diminishing in my piece from one session to another, but I'd be curious to hear from others experiences using black paper.

Elizabeth Seaver said...

I am so amazed by the glow you are getting from the pencils on the black paper. It is just stunning. It's like she's appearing out of the darkness into the light as you work on it. Really fine work, Jeanette.

Gordon Pritchard said...

Hi Jeanette,

You may not need to do much fiddling.
When you have your image in PShop, try this...go to the menu bar---Image--choose "Adjustments"---then choose "Auto Color".
If there is enough variety of colors in your image then, for about 75% of images that should do the trick.
Try it with the same image Masai image an see if you get the same result.

A Brush with Color said...

This looks amazing, Jeanette--stunning.

Jeanette said...

Gordon, great tip, thank you. I don't have PS here at work but tried something similar with GIMP and it works well. You're right, not too much fiddling, just as I like it!

You're a good person to know. Love your Chef Gordon pieces on your blog. Very amusing.

Sue, thank you.

Billie Crain said...

This is coming along extremely well, Jeanette! The lighting is key here, IMO.

I've only worked on black paper with CP's once that I recall. I had to really lay on the layers to get my lighter colors to look true. I think someone on the CP forum on WC recommended laying down a few layers of white, then applying your final color over that to cut down on the drabbing effect of black paper.

SKIZO said...