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Chalk pastel drawing by Mark Vallen Chalk pastel drawing by Mark Vallen
Chalk pastel drawing by Mark Vallen Chalk pastel drawing by Mark Vallen

She who wears Bells on her Cheeks
Mark Vallen 1993
Chalk pastel on paper. 2 1/2 x 5 1/2

Artist's statement: "This life-sized portrait was created using chalk pastel on a single sheet of paper. I first created a very light preliminary sketch directly on the paper with a soft pencil. That sketch was then sprayed with a fixative before proceeding with the color drawing. I then worked up the outlines and details monochromatically using various browns.

Finally I blocked in the main colors. At that point it was a matter of finessing the work, paying attention to color, hues and sharpness of details. I used nothing but soft Sennelier chalk pastel in creating my drawing. For the finer details I would sharpen the chalk stick to a point or fine edge. On occasion I would blend areas with a small rag. After each work session the drawing was sprayed with a workable fixative."

This artwork also appeared as the cover illustration for Milagros Peña's 2007 book, Latina Activists across Borders: Women's Grassroots Organizing in Mexico and Texas.

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