Thursday, September 30, 2010

Portrait #1

Admittedly, these are not the very first portraits I have ever produced... it is just easier to blog them that way.  Anyway, this portrait was produced in the workshop I took on September 16 and 17.  

There are a wide variety of flesh-tone palettes floating around out there.  Of course, they all have their purposes and each individual has to experiment to find what best suits his/her needs.  I remember taking a portraiture class in which we were given a lengthy list of required hues for  palettes which we had to first mix up before we actually started painting.  All the mixing took the fun out of it!  Plus, if you have a fidgety subject sitting in front of you, you better hope you don't have to stop and remix a complicated palette should you run out of a certain mixture.  It all boils down to this:  a simple palette is an easily reproduced palette and, also, an easily remembered palette.  The palette for this gentleman was:

alizarin crimson
cadmium red
cobalt blue 
yellow ochre
titanium white

Pretty simple, huh? 

I used bristle brushes and one mongoose brush.  I love the mongoose - if you haven't used them, buy and try one.  They are the perfect cross between a hog bristle and sable - a firm spring with the soft feel of the sable.

Tips about portraiture:
To create a three-dimensional portrait, keep the sides of the head blurry.  The focal point of the subject will have the most defined edges and be the most detailed.  Cameras, which have their purpose, tend to capture more than what the human eye can perceive all at once.  My suggestion is to work from a live model if at all possible.  Use photos as a reference when the model is unavailable.

Capture a moment!



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