About Les Darlow
Les Darlow is a pastel painter who lives in the UK. He paints what I would call semi-abstract landscapes. His paintings are vibrant, fresh and full of energy, movement, and light.
I came across him via facebook and was immediately taken at first by his skies.
I love the sky and clouds it all just draws me in. There is something peaceful and meditative about enjoying a beautiful sky and there is even something better about being able to paint one is such a way as to draw the viewer in.
This now meant I had to visit his website, check it out here.
Much to my delight, I found he had just published a book called Absolute Pastels.
Buy his book
On his site you can purchase the book here.
It is available as a printed book you can purchase or as a digital book.
You can also purchase the digital book with disk option and you will not only get his wonderful book but you will also get the 5 videos of the projects in the book.
I highly recommend the book and disk option so you can watch him paint these wonderful landscapes.
His package is full of lots of info, videos and pdfs to inspire you to try your hand at his style of painting.
What I found in his books
In this book, he talks about composition and how you can take your photos and choose the right parts to paint just the right landscape. There is also a lot of information on value and how to use that in your painting so you don’t make a flat painting.
There are a couple of paintings in soft pastels and also a couple in panpastels. You get to see how to create this glowing landscapes in both pastels options.
Watch him paint and see how he lays the pastel on the canvas and just how much he leaves out of the painting and manages to capture a beautiful feeling in every landscape he paints.
There are also pdfs of the lessons. You get so much value for you money.
Going from detail painting to looser painting style
I am what I call a fiddler, my brain loves to fiddle with all the details and I could just go with that and do realism and high detail very well. But that is not what makes my creative juices flow. Loose semi-abstract where you capture the essence of a place is where my heart truly lies.
Les Darlow was a scientific illustrator, the kind that does exquisite highly detailed illustration for like medical illustration.
If he can go from so detail oriented then I can also find a way to embrace a looser form of capturing the essence of places in pastel.
His book has given me a place to start and watching him paint has provided me with a better way to understand how to achieve better landscapes in pastels.
Why I love tutorials
Online tutorials are the next best thing to sitting next to the artist and watching them paint. I can’t travel to the UK, even though I would love to take a workshop with him, and this allows me to peek into how he does his art.
I also feel that each tutorial gives you lots of information about the artist technique and thoughts. It fills my head up with ideas and helps me see things in a new way.
There is a learning curve to each new thing we desire to learn and I feel tutorials kind of help shorten the learning curve a bit. It is an investment in you, it helps you progress in your art and your thought process.
Without tutorials I would not be where I am today and even though I have so far to go in the things I want to be artistically successful at, I am enjoying the process and learning all I can.
I highly recommend Les Darlow’s book and disk set. You won’t be sorry you invested in it.