Christmas orders began coming in by September last year (2017) and I had little time to spend on anything else. I worked around 10 - 12 hours a day from mid October onwards and had to create a finely tuned schedule list for each day to ensure every portrait was completed for a specific date because there were a few overseas orders, some framed too and I had to ensure frames were received in plenty of time knowing framers tend to be extremely busy in the run up to Christmas too. I was hoping to have finished all my orders a week before I was due to travel to my old home town of Chesterfield so I could relax a bit but I was literally working late into the night before my journey the next morning!
Luckily everything worked out well in the end and my final portrait Star the Chow Chow, was literally collected by the Commissionee at the train station when I arrived in Chesterfield, he had travelled the 6 hours with me on bus, coach and then train in my suitcase! I received a lovely bunch of flowers from the lady for his painting and was pleased to see some lovely comments from recipients throughout Christmas day upon seeing the portrait of their much loved Pets. Click on any of the images to visit the progress pages.
Now all the Christmas Commissions are all complete and I've had a couple of weeks off to recharge, I am back in the studio working on new articles and 2018 Art Workshops for my Step by Step Art website, there's always so much to do behind the scenes. If you are looking to book your own bespoke Commission with me or are an Artist interested in articles, mini tutorials and possibly taking in a 1 Day Art Workshop with me, click on either of the links below to visit the page/website.
Here's hoping 2018 is a wonderful year for you!
I was approached by a returning customer from the USA to create a Coloured pencil portrait of a Barn Owl and offered to create a few mock ups of compositions before I began as I always do. As a lover of photography I have a large photo reference library of various animals and birds including Barn Owls and so put together 5 different compositions one of which was the 2 Owls on the wall which became the basis of the portrait. The second stage was creating a few mock ups of the Owls within different backgrounds and finally, with the Owls and background in place the last collection of mock ups made were with various walls for the Owls to stand on which were in focus and added interest to the final composition. Many of my Wildlife portraits are created this way.
I chose a tan toned paper to work on which matches the warm tones of the Barn owls as well as giving strength in colour to the lighter tones such as the whites. The tonal background will be created using Derwent's Coloursoft range pencils which are soft and blend well for great effect and the Owls & the wall will be created using the caran Dache Luminance pencils which are ideal for very fine detail and strength of colour. A base layer of tones and loose detail is first applied to the whole of the portrait before I then apply the stronger & finer details to completion.
The Barn Owl at Cresswell, Northumberland (UK)
This portrait is based on actual Barn Owl territory at Cresswell in Northumberland (UK). It is a 40 minute cycle ride from where I live along the beautiful coastal route of Lynemouth through to Cresswell pond, this place regularly has Photographers set up waiting for this little guy to make an appearance. Sitting in the undergrowth of the wide open field which connects to a lagoon where you can regularly see Avocets, Oystercatchers & even Otters on the rare occasion, is an area overlooking the coast and is ideal for field mice and voles. I wait patiently as I see him in the distance, flying silently and hovering on numerous occasions, not at all phased by the long line of photographers with their huge cameras on tripods waiting to get some great photos themselves. There is something breathtaking about seeing such a Bird in the Wild and feeling honoured that this Owl continues it's daily journey passing close by whilst I click the rapid fire button on my camera. Here are some of those photos.
A website offering help, advice and tutorials for Artists of all levels - For Free!
Are you new to Art and looking for advice on what products to buy or maybe you are a long standing Artist looking to swap brands and looking for product comparisons? My official Step by Step Art website offers Articles on varied products and recommendations and pages are being added on a regular basis. Click on any of the images in this post to visit the Article of interest to you, this will open a new tab which directs you to the Step by Step Art website.
There are also plans to offer written Step by Step tutorials as well as mini Video Tutorials for all Artists in the UK and beyond. Articles can also be requested if you are looking for something specific and mediums covered will include Coloured pencils, Graphite pencils, Acrylics and Soft Pastels as well as other mediums that may be offered by other contributors allowing this website to cater to a wide range of Artists.
This website also offers the chance to book an upcoming 1 Day Coloured pencil Workshop in May with myself once the subject matter has been chosen and further details will be added to the website once available.
You can also choose to SUBSCRIBE to my Newsletter if you wish to stay updated with the latest Articles, product reviews and recommendations, tutorials, workshops and any other Art related information that may be of interest.
You can 'like' or 'tweet' this article below if you wish to share this post with anyone it may be of interest to or leave me a comment below if you have any questions or thoughts regarding this post.
Hopefully there will be lots of information you find helpful.
Below are the Christmas commissions that were all completed and received as gifts for the special day - if you wish to see how they came together, please click on any of the images. If you are thinking of booking your own Commission with me and wish to know more, you can visit my COMMISSIONS page which explains the very simple process.
Help and advice is at hand if so....
For those who are not aware, I also have an official 'Step by Step Art' website that allows you to check out my current Workshops or take a look through Articles, written and via video (coming soon) on a plethora of Art related things including Coloured pencils, paper reviews and pencil reviews too. The Article section is still in the early stages but will continue to add to it as regular as I possibly can. My latest Article focus's on Coloured pencils and I decided to do a trial on different pencils that I currently have in my collection.
This article shows the 5 most important factors that I look for when selecting my professional pencil range:
The 5 'tests' shown in this article includes:
This article also gives information on the importance of paper weight (gsm), information on each pencil including costs (GBP) and lightfast ratings as well as my own thoughts on 'adapting to coloured pencils' . I hope that this will be of help to all Coloured pencil Artists out there from those starting out looking to buy their first range to those interested in how Coloured pencils compare.
The very popular Prismacolor Premier & Verithin ranges will also be added to this article very soon and an adaptation of this article (with even more information in) will be available to view and purchase (download or hard copy) from the USA's Colored pencil Magazine 'Student' version in the next few months.
Find out more about this magazine here: Colored pencil magazine - Student Edition
Printed copy $5.99 £3.87* Delivery (1 - 2 weeks) £2.96*
I was recently approached by a pencil Magazine to write an Article on myself and my Coloured pencil Art for a forthcoming issue (more details will follow on the magazine). It is always a compliment knowing that someone likes my Art and wishes to find out more, especially when it is being published in a Magazine that goes out to a world wide audience too. I have spent the last few years creating bespoke Commissions and so decided to challenge myself by creating all new pieces of Art for the magazine, some that were specifically created to represent the 'story' that will be included alongside these pieces of Art - a story that I very rarely share publicly.
As I only had 3 weeks to complete the drawings, I pulled a few unfinished works out the archives to complete and I also began a few brand new pieces too - these works all represent my true artistic interests from Birds which is where I first began, to Big Cats which allow me to really push my boundaries with details, a Human portrait which I just love creating and of course the Pet portraits which I have always loved to do as these animals have all brought so much joy
There were a few pieces I was unable to complete for the deadline (Springer Spaniel above) as I did not want to rush them being so detailed however, all these pieces will be added to my website with their dedicated page as to how they were completed and for those available for sale, a chance to purchase the original or buy a print or 2.
Details will be added on my News page once the Magazine is out (June Issue) with a link to the website where you can purchase a Print copy or a digital copy to download. This magazine is a must for any Coloured pencil lover or for anyone simply wishing to read 'my story' as it's the one and only time I'll share it publicly.
Costs are as follows:
Printed Copy $5.99 £3.87* €5.46* Delivery (1 - 2 weeks) USA $4.06 UK £2.96*
Digital Copy $2.99 £1.93* €2.72*
*Due to exchange rate, these prices may vary
A 10" x 12" of HOLLY, an 8" x 10" of LENNOX and a 12" x 16" trio of Boxers called ABBIE, DOLLY & ARTHUR
Holly (far right) is nearing completion now and I hope to finish it tonight dependant on my obsessive 'tweaking' necessity. The trio of Boxers (top) are still in the very early stages and the base tones are currently being laid down so the fine detail has yet to be added. This is the second portrait I am completing of Lennox (bottom left), the FIRST portrait was completed last year and his Mum, who absolutely loves her boy, wanted another portrait of him done and chose this lovely pose of him.
If you are looking to Commission your own Pet portrait and wish to find out more, you can find some information on my COMMISSIONS page, just drop me a line if you have a bespoke portrait idea - I love a challenge!
Karen M Berisford
1 Day Art Workshops
1 Day Art Workshops
Acrylic Art On Gessobord
Acrylic Paint Article
Acrylic Pet Painter
Acrylic Pet Portraits
African Elephant Art Workshop
Alaskan Husky Drawing
Alaskan Husky In Coloured Pencils
Amethyst Sunbird In Acrylics
Amur Leopard Giclee Print
Articles For Artists
Art Workshops In Chesterfield
Art Workshops In Northumberland
Baby Boxer Dog Painting
Barn Owl Photography
Bearded Collie Pet Portrait
Bespoke Art Commissions
Big Cat Art
Big Cat Artwork
Big Cat Giclee Prints
Big Cat Paintings
Big Cats In Coloured Pencils
Bird Art In Acrylics
Bird Art In Coloured Pencils
Bird Art Workshops
Bird Of Prey Experience
Black Cocker Spaniel
Black Labrador Art
Black Labrador Art Workshop
Black Labrador Painting
Black & White Shorthaired Cat In Acrylic Paints
Bockingford HP Watercolour Paper
Border Collie Art
Boxer Dog Pet Art
Boxer Dog Pet Artist
Boxer Dog Pup
Boxer Dog Puppy
Boxer Dog Show
Brindle Boxer Dog
Brown Labrador Art
Caran Dache Luminance Pencils
Chesterfield Art Workshops
Chesterfield Pet Artist
Chocolate Labrador In Coloured Pencils
Chocolate Labrador Pet Portraiture
Chow Chow Painting
Cocker Spaniel In Acrylics
Cocker Spaniel Pencil Portrait
Colored Pencil Magazine
Coloured Paper Article
Coloured Pencil Art
Coloured Pencil Article
Coloured Pencil Artist
Coloured Pencils Artwork
Coloured Pencils UK Art Workshops
Coloured Pencil Workshop
Dachshund Acrylic Painting
David Beckham Pencil Portrait
Derbyshire Pet Artist
Derwent Coloursoft Pencils
Derwent Coloursoft Pencils Article
Derwent Graphic Pencils
Derwent Inktense Pencils
Derwent Procolour Pencils
Detailed Art Commissions
Dog Portraits In Acrylics
Dog Portraits In Coloured Pencils
Dog Show Judging
Elephant Art Workshop UK
Faber Castell PITT Pastel Pencils
Faber Castell Polychromos Pencils
Fawn Boxer Dog
Frames For Acrylic Paintings
Framing Service Bespoke Portraits
Framing Service Bespoke Portraits
Framing Service - Bespoke Portraits
French Bulldog In Coloured Pencils
Galeria Acrylic Paint Article
German Shorthaired Pointer
GOLDEN Acrylics Molding Paste
Golden Eagle Art Workshop
GOLDEN Heavy Body Acrylics
GOLDEN Heavy Gel Medium
Graphite Art Workshop In Derbyshire
Graphite Pencil Article
Graphite Pencil Art Workshops
Graphite Pencil Workshop UK
Grapite Pencil Tutorial
Green Haired Forest Nymph
Hibiscus Flower Painting
Jack Russell In Coloured Pencils
Jack Russell Pet Portrait
Jaguar In Acrylics
Japanese Akita Acrylic Painting
Karen M Berisford Art Workshops
Karen M Berisford Framing Service
Legion Stonehenge Paper
Lemur In Graphite Art Workshop
Long Eared Owl
Long Haired Dachshund Art
Long Haired Daschund Painting
Mackerel Tabby Cat
Mackerel Tabby In Coloured Pencils
Newbiggin By The Sea Art Workshops
Newbiggin Coloured Pencil Art Workshops
Northern Inuit Art Workshop
Northumberland Pet Artist
Nottingham Dog Show
Notts & Yorkshire Boxer Rescue
Padley Gorge In Autumn
Pet Portrait Art Workshop
Pet Portrait Competition 2012
Pomeranian Dog Portrait
Red Squirrel Art Workshop
Ring Tailed Lemur Art Workshop
Ring Tailed Lemur In Graphite Pencils
Sharpening Pencils Article
Skies Tutorial With Soft Pastels
Snow Leopard Art Workshop
Snow Leopard Eye Tutorial
South African Bird Art
Springer Spaniel Art
Springer Spaniel In Acrylics
Springer Spaniel Painting
Starting Out With Coloured Pencils
Starting Out With Oil Paints
Step By Step Art
Step By Step Art Tutorial
Step By Step Art Tutorials
Sumatran Tiger Giclee Print
Tonal Layering With Coloured Pencils
Uk Art Workshops
Unison Pastels Article
Ursus Paper Article
Vegan Art Products
West Highland Terrier
White Boxer Dog
White Boxer Pup
White Faced Cockatiel In Acrylics
WHsmith Coloured Pencils
Wildlife Art Workshops
Wild Rabbit Art Workshop
Wynyard Hall In Graphite Pencils
Yellow Labrador Art
Yellow Labrador Painting