Would you believe that this picture began as brown paper, a reference book of historic pottery, and a box of pastels?! Alice carefully builds up a multilayered background with her pastels, chooses from her books whichever pots suit her fancy, and conveys every texture with panache.
Her mastery of the notoriously difficult pastel medium is evident. Each item boasts of its own, naturalistic texture – you almost can feel them. Notice the spalling in the larger pot – the tiny little pits where air has popped the clay – and the veining matrix in the highly polished bear.
Her use of color is equally assured; the boldness of the vivid green turquoise bear and rich russet pots is gentled by the use of black, beige, and touches of white. Texture and composition are equally adept.
The raw wood table on which they stand (or is it a windowsill?), the black pot on the right, and the white background to the painted bird canteen are all beautifully arranged. In the background, a lovely, summer’s sky is another complement to the vibrant palette.
Unlike most other artists, Alice frames her own work, and does it well. Her choice of matte and frame harmonizes with the painting, but doesn’t dominate it.
No worries about these pots breaking! A perfect piece for pottery fans with active cats, among others.