Featured Artist Jeanne Cardana

Artist Jeanne Cardana’s richly detailed pencil drawings express a deep love of horses and the outdoor life. Visit her website to see more of her work.

 

Graphite pencil drawing of a young boy on a horse by Jeanne Cardana

“Chris” Graphite Pencil on Archival Illustration Board, 12” x 13”

 

My interest and desire to draw and paint horses and nature started at a very young age. I was blessed with wonderful mentors during my middle school and college years who encouraged me to pursue my passions. Over the years, I experimented with watercolors, acrylics and ink, eventually settling in with graphite pencil work.

 

Graphite pencil drawing of three horses by a fence by Jeanne Cardana

“Three’s A Crowd” Graphite Pencil on Archival Illustration Board, 12” x 14”

 

I found that this medium satisfied my strong desire to capture detail, realistic textures and the spirit of my subjects. Chris and Three’s A Crowd are hallmark pieces that served to take me in a new direction and a higher level of realism.

 

Colored pencil drawing of two horses by Jeanne Cardana

“Considering Options” Colored Pencil on Bristol Vellum Paper, 17” x 14”

 

Over the years I have created pieces that come “out of the frame” or extend beyond the borders. I feel this makes the piece more interesting and adds a sense of movement or activity. This has become a way of framing my work that I have continued to use with many more recent pieces as well.

 

Colored Pencil drawing of a little girl in a saddle by Jeanne Cardana

“Wishful Thinking” Colored Pencil on Bristol Vellum Paper, 16” x 20”

 

Colored pencil is a relatively new medium for me, and I only began working with it exclusively three years ago. My background in biological and scientific illustration influence the strong attention to detail in my pieces.

 

Colored pencil drawing of a cow cooling itself in the Meramec River by Jeanne Cardana

“’Chillin’ In The Meramec” Colored Pencil on Bristol Vellum Paper, 17” x 14”

 

I enjoy the control, the richness of color and the textures I am able to achieve with colored pencils. I feel as though I am “painting with pencils” by working toward not only supporting the realistic depiction of my subjects, but also making a piece that is both aesthetically pleasing to view and successfully tells a story visually.

 

Graphite pencil drawing of a cowboy leading a horse by Jeanne Cardana

“Rainman” Graphite Pencil on Archival Illustration Board, 13” x 14”

 

Graphite pencil continues to be a medium of choice for me, and one that I am most comfortable and proficient with. I use high quality graphite and colorfast colored pencils. My working surfaces range from archival Bristol vellum papers and Claire Fontaine Pastelmatte to illustration boards.

 

Colored pencil drawing of two bison in the winter by Jeanne Cardana

“Winter Sentinels” Colored Pencil on Clairefontaine Pastelmatte, 24” x 18”

 

The surface substrate is often key to the desired effect I wish to achieve. For example, pastel papers lend to the building of layers to get the sense of depth or the illusion of dense fur or hair, as with the bison piece. In contrast, the smoother surface boards or papers serve well for horses, landscape, saddles or human subjects where the finer detail work is important to preserve.

 

Graphite pencil drawing of a farmer behind an unhitched team of draft horses by Jeanne Cardana

“Three’s A Team” Graphite Pencil on Archival Illustration Board, 16″ x 20″

 

Horses and wildlife have been the primary subjects of my body of work over the years. I have owned and worked with horses all my life and they are likely my favorite animal subject. When drawing horses and other animals (humans included!) it is important to get the details, anatomy, conformation and movements correct.

 

Graphite pencil drawing of three horses with their heads together by Jeanne Cardana

“Three’s A Bond” Graphite Pencil on Bristol Vellum Paper, 14” x 12”

 

Once I have my subject(s) in mind and decide what medium to utilize, the composition and storytelling of the piece come together in a way that support the harmony I wish to capture in the piece.

 

Artist Jeanne Cardana working in her studio

Artist Jeanne Cardana working in her studio

 

Recently retired from nursing, I am now able to focus full time on my art and explore further where colored pencil work will take me. I feel I am only beginning to discover the full potential of the medium. Personally, nothing has felt more fulfilling than to see the final piece come together in a way that supports the sense of high satisfaction one gets when viewing a completed, successful work.

 

Artist Jeanne Cardana invites you to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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YES PLEASE!

Comments

  1. Beautiful artwork! Even though I am using a cell phone to view your work, I do indeed see a lot of thought and detail to your process.

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