•May 25, 2013 • Leave a Comment
This is Margaret who was given a portrait session as a christmas present from her daughter. In at the deep end for both of us here. Margaret has never sat for one and I have never painted a portrait from life before! We both have to trust the process and believe it will be successfully taken to a likable finish. This stage is after three two-hour sessions and the sittings are over now; I will cheat from here on and consult the photos wot I took on day one. The sittings were good fun and were not taken too seriously by either of us, despite my self critical inner voice going haywire.
The most difficult thing was going into the picture without a vision of composition or time to consider it. It was pretty much gung ho from the beginning. I tried to get the hands in but discovered mistakes in the drawing that pushed the hands out the frame. Another thing I found, I wasn’t sure of my paint marks. I didn’t have a plan due to my inexperience. The first sitting was pretty disastrous altogether actually, but I stumbled through to get to the point where I knew it was recoverable.
Enjoying the exercise, but whether I will try another time is something to think about! I’ll post the finished portrait in a few weeks.
•April 26, 2013 • 7 Comments
Demo no. 5 at the “have to leave it to walk the dog” stage. I’ll get back down to the studio later to finish what was a tough week at the coal face (not exactly but you know what I mean).
Here is Scott. Skin is completely different colour than the others. Pale and more yellow ochre in the mix, reds are evident only in the shadows. His head tilted down makes for strong shadows underneath and high contrast.
The paint is more buttery and the technique used is going Frans Hals(y).
I ran out of time on the shirt, the strong check will take an hour or so by itself. You can see how the painting begins in the gap. I have used a 4×4 grid and the outline is painted in ultramarine blue. The blue shows through as the painting develops and is less likely to disappear into the skin tones.
I’ve really enjoyed this week and am pleasantly surprised how much my speed developed as the days went on.
•April 25, 2013 • 2 Comments
A face from the archives for demo no. 4 for the Thursday HAC group. I sprung it on this captive audience as I forgot to tell them they were getting a demo!
This is Ken with great skin tones to play with and then a wonderful background grey to mix. As the week has progressed I have been getting faster and arrive through the stages of the painting with more confidence. The perks of putting the hours in. This one was about an hour and a half in class then another hour in the studio to bring it to a close. The paint today was very fluid, using the medium of turps and linseed oil more.
•April 25, 2013 • 3 Comments
Trying to keep from retouching is near impossible! I did say I was satisfied with the one on the left but on returning to the studio to clean up, the temptation to keep painting was too much. Putting the two together shows me that the gains are so little that I should resist the urge. I have slightly improved the likeness but lost a little freshness, but to be honest , I dont think the changes are worth sweating over. (The change in colour is due to the camera and maybe the time of day the two were taken). Onwards to demo no. 4 tomorrow….
•April 24, 2013 • 3 Comments
Demo no. 3 for wednesday class. That was a tough one. This being a slightly shorter class (average height 5ft 3″ ) meant I was rushing slightly to get to the finish, so errors crept in. I spent another hour in the studio with it to correct what I could. I would like to spend another hour on it but that would defeat the purpose. I am quite happy with it now.
The hair pulled back leaves a distinct head shape which was hard to find. Then the skin colours show a full range from hot to cool and my biggest problem here was to keep the skin clean looking.
I’ll try and pick an easier subject for Thursday’s demo.
•April 23, 2013 • 2 Comments
It’s that guy again…. At the risk of annoying everyone (Sandy included!) I have used Sandy’s image for another demo. I am going to use it just one more time for demonstration purposes, then after that I have a larger painting to do of him and that’s him bye.
•April 22, 2013 • 2 Comments
Went to the studio this evening to clean up and wash brushes. I couldn’t resist finishing the demo to the point where I am happy to leave alone now. I was able to turn the gaze a little towards us, adjusted a few skin tones and refined a bit of the drawing.