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Friday, October 14, 2016

Baby Isla

This sweet little portrait was a long time in coming. I started it months before it was eventually completed. In between the beginning and the end was a flurry of commissions that demanded my attention. At last I was finally able to give it the attention that was required to finish it.
Baby Isla
14 x 18", Oil on canvas
Rita Salazar Dickerson
Stage 1: Sketching in the composition.  I tinted the canvas first and then with the same thinned paint I loosely painted in the figure.
Stage 2: Painting the head and shoulders.  Knowing that this was the first layer, I blocked in the major shapes and colors -- painting wet-on-wet, or alla prima.
Stage 3: The body, arms and legs were next. 

Stage 4: Painting the foreground, background, fabric and basin. My biggest challenge was to paint just enough information to make the cloth and basin believable. I also paid attention to my edges as I painted the background and foreground. 
Stage 5: Adding more details to the background. My goal was to keep this composition simple but I kept feeling like she was so alone in this big, empty room. After much deliberation, I added the shower curtain along with the corner wall and bottom portion of the bathtub.
Final Stage: Completing the painting. One of the many final touches was the baseboard on the wall behind her. It seemed to complete the "frame" around her. From there I checked values, edges and color and made necessary adjustments.