Thursday, April 12, 2012

next project: "annabel of the lakota"

drawing for "annabel....."
annabel is a lovely woman who always visits us when we go to porcupine, sd, on the pine ridge reservation of the oglala sioux tribe. she makes us fry bread, is a chauffeur for many of her family and friends should they need transportation, and fills our idle hours with fascinating stories of her people. she was gracious enough to allow me to photograph her as she talked with us one afternoon and from these shots i have chosen this pose for my next painting.

using a 16"X20" sheet of 140#, cold press fabriano artistico paper i drew in the likeness of annabel using a modified contour technique. this will be difficult for me as i am very fond of her and i am already nervous that the likeness not be as it should. i won't let this dissuade me however and continued on to her upper body which included her very expressive hands. if i can carry this off it will be a nice painting.

first washes on "annabel...."
to start the painting i decided to use the flesh color i usually use in the shadow of caucasian skin which is cadmium red light, yellow ochre (or raw sienna/umber), and cerulean blue. using a midvalue of this i painted the underside of the nose with a #6 round that pointed very well. having done that i rinsed and gave it a good shake and used this damp clean brush to draw out the paint up and over the top of the nose and around the alae. i released the inferior aspect of this wash into the upper lip with some pale cerulean blue. next i moved onto the *left* eye (*..* means relative to the figure not the witness). using the same brush and a darker version of the same colors i painted the shadow under the upper lid. changing to burnt umber i painted in the upper portion of the iris being careful to leave the speck of white for the highlight. after a clean and shake i drew the pigment down to th inferior of the iris and out onto the lower lid. a splotch of pure cerulean blue made the inner aspect of the socket recede properly and then i tied it in with the rest of the lateral and inferior socket with the flesh color. by this time the iris had dried sufficiently to give me a little blurring of the pupil but still with some control. this was painted using ultramarine blue again avoiding the highlight. i then painted the lateral extent of the socket and carried it up and over the eye brow and put some burnt umber in wet-in-wet for the brow. i wanted to lose the edge of the face opposite the eye so i put in some of the hair and background shapes and scratched in a few wisps of hair as it dried. she has prominent cheeks and i painted them using a #8 round brush and a redder version of the flesh color starting at the dimple near the corner of her mouth and painting upward to meet the painting around her eye leaving a highlight over the most prominent area of the cheek that catches the light. i started to model the *left* side of the forehead and lost that edge into the hair. some spattering and manipulation of cerulean blue and carmine defined the lateral edges of her cheek and top of the shoulder of her tee-shirt. that's all for today. i can see that the iris in her *right* eye is not looking to the *left* enough and i will have to correct this in the painting or she will look like she has a "lazy" use the technical term.

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