Thursday, February 21, 2013

commission portrait: next one hour painting session

here is the next stage of the portrait. i am sort of jumping around trying to keep most areas in step with each other and be sure the background connects with the subject at least in places. i think the face is getting to the point that i have to be careful of overdoing it. each stroke at this point will have to be preceded by the question, "does it really need more ?"

gonna go and make it happen, 11"X15"
marti, how is that title?

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

pants on fire: first "commission"

i know, i know. i said i wasn't going to post until i returned from borrego springs, but apparently i lied.
shortly before i left i went to the opening of my show at the pumphouse regional arts center and talked to marti schwemm who has been nothing if not supportive of my work over the last few years. in fact she is the person who alerted me to the opportunity to be juried into the 2013 pump house exhibitions. anyway, just before the opening reception ended she asked if i would paint a portrait of her deceased husband jack.

after first session of painting
needless to say, i was thrilled and a bit humbled to accept. i had imagined the process for doing this sort of thing would at least entail interviewing and photographing, if not sketching, the subject in life. as jack passed a few years ago this was not possible.

so i met with marti and we went over the photos that she had of jack. her daughter also contributed some photos. she lives in scotland so thanks to the internet we were able to get the digital file of the photo that everyone seemed to like best.

after the second painting session
i started the process by sketching a few value studies, a few sheets in the sketch book working on the various features of the face, and drew the image of jack on a piece of 11"X15" 300# hot press arches paper. i haven't liked the darker values i have been getting lately in my portraits so i decided to go with direct painting of the features and modeling without an initial wash.

here are the results following the first two sessions of painting. so far i am happy with the high key, fresh, and colorful washes as i watch jack emerge from the stark white, flat sheet of paper.