Carrie L. Lewis, Artist

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Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 4

Photo reference for colored pencil painting, Buckles & Belts in CP
Original Colored Pencil Painting
11 x 14 Rising Stonehenge Paper, 90lb, Pearl Grey

Week Four for Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil was reduced to two days, but for good reason. Studio time Monday through Wednesay was given to working through the dead layer on the large portrait of Muscle Hill. I worked an abbreviated session on Thursday before deciding the more prudent course of action was stepping back and letting paint dry.

At that point, I took up the colored pencils again and got to work on this painting.

Original Colored Pencil Painting, Buckles & Belts by Carrie L. Lewis
Colors Used: (Prismacolor) Goldenrod, Dark Brown, Dark Green, Tuscan Red, Sienna Brown, Black Cherry, Indigo Blue, Black, Sepia, Dark Umber

I began work with Prismacolor pencils, beginning with some of the smaller, isolated areas of hair. The first place I worked was in the cheek between the cheek strap of the halter and the cheek strap of the bridle. Beginning with Goldenrod and working toward darker colors, I layered every color listed above in the order in which they are listed.

I used light pressure and broad, directional strokes with the side of the pencil when using Goldenrod. With the darker colors, I used the pencil point and a sharp point to apply color in directional strokes following hair growth and muscle shapes. Medium pressure was used until I got toward the end of the process. At that stage, I used medium to heavy pressure.

When that area was done, I used the same process and colors to paint the hair visible through the halter ring.

Then I began with Dark Brown and applied color with a directional stroke over the rest of the cheek and the isolated areas. The eye was next and I worked out and down from the eye to the rest of the face. Dark Brown was applied in most of the shadows and some of the middle tone areas. I used the side of the pencil in the broad shadow under the eye, but in most other areas, I followed the pattern and direction of hair growth. Pressure was light.

Original Colored Pencil Painting, Buckles & Belts by Carrie L. Lewis
Colors Used: (Prismacolor) Dark Brown

I finished the Dark Brown layer on the horse with light pressure and loose, directional strokes that followed the pattern of hair growth. I worked on the neck, forehead and ear. In the darker shadows, I used a heavier pressure (still only medium) and the strokes were tighter. In the middle tones such as near the poll and the lighter area ahead of the eye, I used lighter pressure and more open strokes.

I also used small circular strokes to add more Dark Brown to the eye.

Work on the bridle began with medium-heavy pressure and a blunt point along the shaded edges of the head stall, then a lighter layer of Dark Brown into the shadows and the darker area of the headstall and throatlatch. My goal in these areas was to begin  reducing the emphasis on the leather straps where they either pass behind other design elements or where they exit the composition.

Color application was a bit difficult in the neck and especially so in the lower right hand corner of the composition. There is enough color build up in that area that I may to use retouch varnish or blend the colors with rubbing alcohol to restore the tooth. I’ll make that decision when I get back to work next week.

The goal is to have this painting completed by the end of March.

Related Posts
Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Introduction
Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 1
Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 2
Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 3


Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 3


Buckles & Belts in Colored Pencil, Week 5


  1. Nice painting!

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