Pastel Flamingo With Kerry Bennett

What you will need:

This was an easy project I really want to try.  After receiving my Pastel Shades Paint Pan Set and seeing the pastel colours, the pinks and pale oranges really stood out and my first thought was to paint a flamingo. Then I saw the name of one of the colours…pink flamingo. I had to have a go.

I only wanted to paint part of the bird in a looser style for those delicate shades of pinks and peaches. I drew the head, neck and chest of the bird with a view to fade away the colour.  

Flamingo Outline

The drawing was a simple shape with beautiful curves. I found that putting straight edges on the image, (either draw them or visualise them) helps to see the angles of the curves, when they bend and how much they bend. By visualising a line from the pupil down, this helped to see where the beak should be in proportion to the body.

I began by mixing the paints with the waterbrush that came with the set and loosening up the pigment, so I could be ready to paint using the wet into wet technique. I wet the bird (not the eyes or beak) with clean water and began layering the light colours first, adding more pigment to the areas that were darker.

Close up of adding colour detail

I used the colours: Peach, Coral Pink and Pink Flamingo, adding a little Storm Grey to the pink areas to create a darker shade for the shadows. I also added a touch of Lemon here and there which gave it a nice glow.

I found that using these paints to layer and blend was very easy, even after they dried. I was able to get a smooth and well blended look. When the paint is dry, it almost looks like a soft pastel painting.

I felt it needed dark tones to make the painting pop, so I used the Inktense Studio Paint Pan Set, mixing the colours Payne’s Gray, Violet and Red Oxide, to create a dark almost black for the tip of the beak, and diluted a little of the same mix for the grey areas of the beak.  I also added the almost black colour around the eye and the pupil.

I then wet the background and added a mixture of the Mid Ultramarine and Turquoise and faded the paint away by diluting it, cleaning the brush and diluting a little more.

I thought this needed a little more of a grey shade, so I glazed the background with diluted Payne’s Gray from the Inktense paints.

When that was dry, I flicked the same colours I used in the painting, on the bottom left and top right of the painting. The waterbrush that comes with the set was a very useful tool for this, just the right size. I tap the brush as if tapping the ash off a cigarette. Holding the brush close to the paper; gave me more control of where the flicks ended up.

Final flamingo piece

Thank you to Kerry Bennett for providing this blog for us. You can discover her work on her websiteInstagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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