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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Family Portrait Painting: Part 6

At last, I am here, working on Laurel, the final figure in this family portrait. Completing a figure a week in this painting at times seemed like a lofty goal when I have had multiple projects going on at the same time. But I did it and am so happy to be at this point. Relieved, really.

Stage 14: Painting Laurel's face. I used the same method of working wet-on-wet as I did with the other family members. Working on one subject after another with the same light source allowed me to get a similar approach going with each of them. I thought this would help me get faster with each one but it didn't. It still took me a similar amount of strokes and problem solving moments to get the features just right and the lighting and colors accurate. Because Laurel was standing closer to the camera, I had to adjust her size to fit in with the composition. Reference photos are helpful but not accurate when it comes to size and proportions. The camera lens had made her unrealistically larger than the rest.

Stage 15: Painting the red dress. If you follow the visual progression of Laurel's dress in these next few photos, you can see how I blocked in the shapes of the shadows and light with large simple strokes of color.

Stage 15...continued. The light, shadows and folds create visual movement in her dress.

Loading my brush with nice, thick paint (about the consistency of mayonnaise) and creating the final effects of light on the front of her dress was so much fun. I love being able to see the brush strokes. It is entertaining to the viewer.

While the paint was still fresh, I took a deep breath and painted her delicate necklace and its shadows.
Stage 16And then from there it was time to paint her arms and hands. Once again, the jewelry added so much to this composition. Eye catching details...yes!

Stage 17: Painting Laurel's legs, feet and sandals. I kept adding more color to her legs and then decided to hold off and not do any more until the background is painted in. Then, adjustments will be made to everyone I'm sure.
Painting in the background will add an entirely new dimension to this group portrait. I can hardly wait!

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