Here's WIP #4 on Levi's portrait. I was hoping to finish up today, but when I scanned it I noticed a few areas that need tweaking. Something about scanning.... seems to emphasize any problem areas. I've really enjoyed doing this portrait and have learned a lot. As usual, comments and any suggestions you'd like to offer are welcome!
What I learned on this painting:
- I bought a dozen or so Polychromos pencils and a half dozen more Lyra's to add to my cp stash. I've got a large collection of Prismas and love the color range, but I think the Polychromos and Lyra's may become my favorites because they're so smooth. I used all three three brands on this portrait.
- I've been working really hard on developing a lighter touch, particularly in areas where there's a color or value transition. It's easier to add color than it is to remove it, so I tried to stay aware of how much color I was laying down and not go too dark or too saturated too fast. I think I've made some progress.
- Still working on keeping the big picture in mind as I go... that is, not getting caught up in one little section and working it to death before I realize I've emphasized that area more than I wanted.
Things to try on future paintings:
- An underpainting in either acrylic or watercolor. I want a smoother finished look, but for children's skin I don't want to burnish or use solvents. When painting skin I prefer a few fairly light layers to many layers that build up thickness.
- Using a hotpress wc paper.... I'm curious to see what effects I'll get using cp on a very smooth paper. Since it's wc it will take the underpainting without a problem. I know the look I'm after, so I'm going to experiment and see what works best.
AND..... for 2009:
I was reading Laure's blog (Painted Thoughts) and found an idea that made perfect sense to me. Laure mentioned that instead of making New Year's resolutions she had chosen a word for 2009. Her word is "Intent". She referenced another blog (Christine Kane) who explains the concept. Check it out. I thought it was a great idea, much more doable for me than a "to do" list. There is even a list of possible words on Kane's blog if you're not sure. As soon as I read Laure's post I knew what my guiding word for 2009 would be: ACTION!! I've read a lot of art books, browsed a lot of blogs, weighed and considered color theory, done all kinds of arty experiments with various media.... and now it's time to get down to business and be productive! Even if I make a mess, it's okay.... as long as I'm doing something! This year is going to be my year to do, not just to think about doing. I have a quote taped to my computer. It's a reminder/warning to myself. It reads, "I have spent my days stringing and unstringing my instrument, while the song I came to sing remains unsung." (Tagore). I don't want to die with my song unsung. So this year I will do more than think about it.... I will do it.