Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Wistful......


The original photo for this painting was a challenge photo way back in December. A challenge on a small portrait painters blog I am part of, a place where a few friends have got together, friends with a love and desire to capture a persons sole....to learn and help each other along the way...The photo belongs to Babasteve (Steve Evans) on Flickr and is posted under creative commons, for which I know I am among many others in being very grateful to him for sharing his wonderful work. You can see his gallery HERE.



I loved this photo as soon as I saw it, seeing so many different colours in her skin, making me want to grab everything on  my palette..... I started off with a quick basic sketch, not worrying about the likeness, as it was the colours and tones I wanted to experiment with, and where I think I need to concentrate my studies more. I only drew the basics as I find this stops me fiddling too much. It frees you up to be more creative, with no lines to contain and hold you in.. Providing your features are in the right place, your portrait will work, even though it may no be an exact likeness...

There was already a touch of blue & red on my palette so I went with it, and after all we all know they are my favourite colours :). Although I could see a lot of Burnt Sienna in her face I wanted to experiment  so went with Cad Red instead. Sometimes you need to go with your instinct otherwise you never learn. By experimenting and not being a slave to the photo this also allows your work to be different, to be your own style...


I could have almost left it at this stage, and there was lots I liked about it and wish I'd kept. But I needed to change my palette, move away from the colours I too often use..It was time to be brave...



I added some Burnt Sienna especially to the left shadow side of the face....I wasn't too sure of the Cer. Blue  so added some green over it. I rarely use green from the palette, I almost always mix greens, but picked it up without thinking....but I think the jade colour it created worked better with the burnt Sienna on the painting...

I recently bought some Daler Rowney B.Sienna and I am finding it much redder than the Windsor & Newton, which for this painting I was really getting to like.









I decided to take this further... It certainly needed work in some areas. It's too easy to leave paintings sometimes because you have a lovely wash or effect, you need to have form as well, and it was missing this in some areas, especially around the eyes. I like points from both the last 2 stages and have learned a lot from each.

A closer view of the face. For some reason the photo seems to loose colour when uploaded on to the blog, It's a touch more colourful and brighter I think that it show here. This has been a real joy to paint and I have since done another version of this and have another ready to paint. I did something here I almost never do, and that is to paint the same photo again, but i'm learning so much more by doing this....
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