Monday, November 4, 2013

"…mule man…." finish and start of "just a girl and her bowler"

"behold! the mule man cometh" (17"X15")
i've been getting ready for a holiday show at the studio gallery 1311 here in la crosse and have neglected the blog. i will try to catch things up here today. i finished the painting that i entitled "behold! the mule man cometh" and saw not that much difference between the finish and the last post image. i know that i darkened some values in the shadows to bring them into congruity and added some texture to the background mountains and desert. i believe some washes were added to his cap and the railing from which is hanging the canvas and on which he is leaning. other than that i think that was all that i painted. here it is.

i also started a painting using an image that was shot at the modeling session with "anna". i have photos of pretty much all the stages in about 30-45 minute increments of work. i think most of the steps are self-explanatory to those following this blog and i have described how i go about getting myself in the trouble i often do many, many times…..just you can avoid them! old habits die hard.

i started this painting with the idea that i wanted to use different colors in the background than i usually do (away from the dark grey/black/blue) and a little warmer. i also wanted another of my challenging compositions and depicting the figure in unusual light as if she were illuminated by a spot light low and in front of her. other than that, it was free-wheeling all the way. i will just post the sequential photos. if anyone has any questions, please post them in comments and i will get back to you posthaste.

drawing…darkened over real life so details show

initial wash of manganese blue, vermillion, raw sienna

starting to model her features (same colors)
ditto…adding burnt sienna and ultramarine blue for derby

letters lifted and then painted with vermillion

"just a girl and her bowler" (12"X22")
darks balanced and shirt shadows cerulean blue, carmine, raw sienna

so there we are. there is a lot that i like about this…unusual composition that i think, arguably, works, the unique background colors for me, the multi-colored shadows on the wall, and the lighting. i enjoyed doing the letters but i am still in a bit of flux whether just a dark shape would have sufficed. well, as i am heard to say on occasion……it ain't horrible.


  1. I really like seeing the various steps , there is always inspiration and something to learn. Love both of your works and the situations , not just portraits, but portraits with a meaning.

  2. i have to thank you again, jane, for your nice comments. i try to put the folks i paint into a mood or situation where the viewer can up their own unique narrative. like, "who is that person?", "where are they going?", "what are they doing?", or even " i wonder what they are like and whether i would like them?" so, at least with yourself, i seem to have succeeded. thanks again.