Using of layers of prismatic color, artist Judith Selcuk’s colored pencil artwork is filled with detail, depth and translucence. Visit her website to learn more about this artist and see her gallery of work.
Originally trained in graphic design and illustration, I branched out and explored my artistic side some years after my degree. I was inspired by the way I saw colour. I realised that I did not see colours quite the same as the majority of people; whereas most saw, for example, the colour blue, I would see varying shades of red and purples.
When I explored this, I realised that I see the world in colour and in images and this certainly shows in my work and the art materials I choose to create with.
I am predominantly a coloured pencil and gouache artist. I love to explore alternative ways this underrated medium can be used. I love to elevate the coloured pencil past its humble and simple form. It is often viewed as simply a tool for children to use in colouring books as opposed to a fine art medium.
I do not wish to recreate a photo; I want to express my ideas, thoughts and emotions through the use of heightened colour and texture. I am not a conformist in any way, and love to explore different surfaces such as canvas, sanded papers, wooden panels and drafting film.
Growing up by the sea and now living in the beautiful countryside, I love to paint and draw water in all its forms. Its fluidity and constantly changing nature is a part of my artistic soul. I constantly have images in my head that evolve and often appear at the oddest moment when I am not expecting it.
For my body of work with water as its subject, I use only cradled panels and canvas with mixed media which includes gold and silver leaf to capture the essence of water’s transient nature.
One of my pet hates is when I hear or read about coloured pencils being referred to as pencil crayons. I feel this greatly undervalues them. The way in which I use them is akin to oil painting in that they are used like glazes; each colour shines through the next and gives my work a very three dimensional feel.
This method suits my depictions of animals and birds. The layers of fur and feather are illuminated with the translucent quality of coloured pencil. Eyes are the windows of the soul and it is a great challenge to capture the depth of colour in an iris—I believe it is this that denotes a successful portrait.
The same applies to flowers and foliage, where I layer pigment to create depth without compromising the fragility of the petals. Alternative surfaces enable me to create and express myself and push the colour to its absolute limits without losing sight of the realism this media naturally encourages.
I feel the same way about gouache. It is not just for the illustrator anymore, but can also be used in many different techniques from thin washes to thick impasto painting. Gouache lends itself beautifully to mixed media and compliments the translucent quality of coloured pencil.