A few months ago I started this pastel drawing from the live model. I was using Nupastels and working the surface over with light washes of water, creating these nice drips and shapes of color. It's been waiting patiently for me to finish it up! But I was a little nervous about going forward - I liked the immediacy of the drawing, the quality of the line...even though I knew it was "un-finished", the thought of finalizing it worried me.
I started out by pushing the aspect of the piece I liked the best - the warm, rich reds. I love reds! I tried to not define the shape of the figure too much - she was no longer in front of me! All I could do was push the color or the line quality at this point.
For some reason I started to add in blue. This was not a good choice I think. The blue was too harsh, and felt cold. It also put too much emphasis on the triangular shape behind the figure.
So back to the reds! I should mention that this is on a Pastelboard - a primed masonite board that has a great surface texture. I was able to re-work the pastel several times, and if it got too saturated, I washed off an area and started again.
While the palette was improving, I wasn't crazy about the length of her torso and position of her knee. Luckily, the kind model had let me photograph this pose, so I referred back to the photo on my computer and then went back to the drawing - making adjustments to her knee on the right - raising it up and making it larger, helping the depth of the figure from the protruding knee to the back shoulder.
I also added in a few other details in the drapery, and re-established the cast shadows under her breast and on her torso. I think she sits better on the sofa now, and I'm glad I didn't hide all of the blue - it has come together pretty well!