The Wow Factor | Pastel 100 Jurors on Painting a Winner

Bold. captivating. Stunning. enthralling. exquisite. These are just 
a few of the descriptors used by the jurors of the 14th Annual Pastel 100 to describe their prize­winning selections. They also mentioned expected attributes such as strong design, textural qualities, and a fine handling of values, movement and color. Once an entry has met these criteria, however, the jurors have to turn to a more intangible measurement—the “wow factor.”

The jurors noted an impressive range of styles and quality in every category and lamented the difficulty in narrowing down the field to only a handful of pastels. “At a certain point,” says Landscape & Interior juror Liz Haywood-Sullivan, “it can be very hard to place one entry higher than another. In that sense, truly everyone who makes the top 100 is a winner.”

We’d like to thank our jurors for their hard work, careful deliberation and enthusiasm in the task of choosing this year’s award-winners. To hear more of the juror’s reflections, and to see all 100 winners in the competition, pick up a copy of the April issue of Pastel Journal on sale here or on newsstands beginning March 12. Below, we share some of the jurors’ own pastel work, as well as a few bits of advice for future entrants in the Pastel 100 Competition:

Anne McGrory—Still Life & Floral
“Paint what you love. If you feel a connection to what you’re painting, it really comes across to the viewer.”

Shell Seeker II (pastel) by Anne McGrory

Shell Seeker II (pastel) by Anne McGrory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bonnet Shells (pastel) by Anne McGrory

Bonnet Shells (pastel) by Anne McGrory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alain Picard—Portrait & Figure
“It’s the little foxes that spoil the den. A truly glorious painting can be undermined by a small drawing error or an overly hard edge, an unsightly shape or an errant value. Mind the ‘foxes’ in your painting by developing a mental checklist of form, value, color and design to ensure that all visual tools are used to enhance your artistic vision.”

Brothers (pastel) by Alain Picard

Brothers (pastel) by Alain Picard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Recital (pastel) by Alain Picard

The Recital (pastel) by Alain Picard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jennifer Gardner (Abstract & Non-Objective)
“Good design and composition—paramount in all genres of art—
are no less important in abstract or non-objective painting.”

Copper and Red Series 5 (pastel) by Jennifer Gardner

Copper and Red Series 5 (pastel) by Jennifer Gardner

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flow Blue (pastel) by Jennifer Gardner

Flow Blue (pastel) by Jennifer Gardner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandy Byers—Animal & Wildlife
“Lots of animal artists use photos as reference, but that doesn’t mean we must be ruled by them. Paint from life when you can. Even if it’s not an animal, the practice will add to your knowledge of form and color. And if you’re working from a photo, dig deeper. Add some of your creative self to the piece.”

Hopes Landing (pastel) by Sandy Byers

Hopes Landing (pastel) by Sandy Byers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fiber Art (pastel) by Sandy Byers

Fiber Art (pastel) by Sandy Byers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liz Haywood-Sullivan—Landscape & Interior
“If a judge is not going to see the actual work, your image of the work needs to stand out on a screen. Be sure to choose images that look good on the computer screen and read well at screen size. Perhaps, if the work is too subtle, you should only enter it in a show where it will be judged in person.”

Mainely Mist (pastel) by Liz Haywood-Sullivan

Mainely Mist (pastel) by Liz Haywood-Sullivan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

January Thaw (pastel) by Liz Haywood-Sullivan

January Thaw (pastel) by Liz Haywood-Sullivan

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