Saturday, July 21, 2012

Wall Mural

I was commissioned to do a mural of two boys in a swing. The challenge here was to improve the anatomy and perspective on a mural that another Friendswood artist had done. The former artist did a good job with the tree, the swing and the grass; and my assignment was to improve the likeness of the two boys in the swing. I also needed to match the swing and the background as I shrunk the heads and relocated the boys on the swing.

I started out by taking photos of the boys in a swing. Since none of the individual photos worked for me, I used the magic of Photoshop to do get my layout just the way I wanted. I presented two layouts for my client to see, and after adding a smile on one of the boys faces—they chose one right off the bat. Good start!

I then proceeded to transfer the image on the wall and substitute my image in place of the previous one, matching the background and swing. So far so good. Follow along with my progression as I post images of my daily painting sessions to the finished mural.
The Original Image

Day one-We needed to remove an electrical outlet,
which my client took care of right away!

Days two and three-were spent matching the grass, transferring
the image to the existing mural and doing a value study.

Now the fun begins—Adding the color.
I hope to be done by next week. Stay tuned for more images.
Worked on the shirts, shoes & skin tones today. It's getting there.
The younger child's likeness is dead on,
but I need to get a better likeness of the older child.
Will work on the eyes and mouth tomorrow.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Varnishing 101

Wait 6 months to allow the paint to dry fully. Some recommend a year. I apply my varnish with a synthetic brush from Lowes or HD dedicated solely to varnishing. A mixture of Winsor Newton Artists' Original Matt Varnish with Winsor Newton Artists’ Gloss Varnish gives a nice buttery finish. Use a double boiler to heat the mixture in order to melt the wax in the Matt varnish. Some people use the microwave for this step, but I feel the mixture is too volatile for that.

Paint in one direction with overlapping strokes. After 10 hours apply the second coat in strokes perpendicular to the first coat. Clean your brush with mineral spirits and let your varnished painting dry over night. Varnishing your paintings protects them from dust and scratches. If scratches happen after the painting is varnished just re-varnish the area and poof they disappear.

If anyone has any other recommendations for varnishing, let me know by posting a comment.