Lyme Regis Art Society Members enjoyed a demonstration of pastel painting by Rebecca De Mendonca, whose paintings of animals, landscapes and people are always a joy to watch.

Stepping in at the last moment, she painted an image of her daughter on a beach, using Unison pastels together with conte, charcoal and polychromos pencils for very fine work, on mountboard primed with Colourfix Original Primer to give the rough surface needed for pastel work. 

Her early career in theatre design left her with a love of the drama created by light on form and light falling on the bent back of the stooping child contrasted by a dark background of rich blue sea and sky created the dramatic image Rebecca wanted.

After tea, she shared her animal portraiture technique, creating a dog’s eye for us and explaining in detail how and where the light fell, bringing it to life.

She covers finished work with cellophane from florists’ websites and when asked about the problems of framing and transporting pastel work, said that if you work on card, you can bang it on a hard surface and double-mount it so any dust falls between the mounts.

Rebecca runs workshops and residential courses with details on her website. Growing up with praise from her art teacher mother and criticism from her lovely architect father, Rebecca learn the value of both, and advises beginners to start simply drawing fruit forms before trying harder subjects and to draw what excites them.