The Pastel Journal

The Making of Treasures

“Above all else, what I care about in art is honesty,” says Kitty Wallis, veritable luminary in the field of pastel. “There are paintings made to sell, and then there are paintings made from the heart. Understanding the difference is really important. We’re making a treasure when we create art. It’s up to us whether we devalue that treasure or make it something useful, wise and honest in reporting the experiences of our lives. We need to connect with our artist self, not our business self, when painting.”

THE JOY OF PORTRAITURE

A natural-born artist, Wallis recalls, “When I was 4 years old, I showed my mom one of my drawings while she was doing the dishes and, without looking at it, she said, ‘That’s nice, dear.’ That was enough for me. I knew then that she was happy that I liked to draw. I also have a clear memory from a few years later of being fascinated by a spot of bright red—an empty cigarette pack—on a slope of green grass near our home in Bucks

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