Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Today's Painting

I enjoyed painting my nephew's daughter today. It is a great shot of her playing on the beach. As always I start with a yellow ochre background and sepia value study. The shadows in sand and the diagonal line of the water in the background  add interest to the composition. She is such a cutie. I have never seen a picture of her without  a smile on her face. I will post my progress as I go along. It should be fun.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Before and After

The project is now completed! The initial image was improved by photographing the children on an actual swing. This allowed me a source picture to use to correct the anatomy of the children. Children's heads are big but not that big. I noticed when I saw the children in person their hair was a wonderful red. In the photograph the hair color darkened to a much browner shade. I wanted to correct that in the final painting. Because of the repositioning and smaller head size, I had to repaint parts of the swing and grass that were done initially with an airbrush. With all these challenges, it worked out beautifully by matching the colors and using a dry brush technique.

I used Golden Open Acrylics—Thanks for that recommendation, Jackie! Since they are slow drying they work more like the oil and watercolor paints that I do the majority of my work in. The water cleanup was by far superior to the solvents you use with oil paints. For an additional challenge, I mixed all the colors from the primary colors, red yellow and blue. The final image looks more like the actual children and shows their wonderful red hair. The younger child now looks like he is sitting in the swing instead of falling out of it. It was a fun project—I had a good time doing not only the faces, but also the tennis shoes and the t-shirts, especially the superman emblem! Scroll down for more on how I did this painting and the details on the process from start to finish.