Watercolor on Arches CP 140lv, 9x12." Allen was actually a portrait study somebody commissioned me to do through ArtFire.com. It means that I might just hang out on ArtFire a little longer and hope for more sales to come. I do love the user-friendliness and all the available options of their shops.
Back to the painting. This one was a struggle...I was captured with the photo - the emotion, the colors, the pose, the tilt of the head - all were interesting to me and I plunged into it. Well, this is one case where I wish I had done a drawing first. My attempt #1 was failure:
So, at some point I decided I wasn't going to be happy with this painting and it was too late to fix the structure. I had to start over.
Step 1, semi-wet-into-wet. Just trying to get the main shapes in place. I actually went ahead and drew the center line and the eye line of the head with a brush, to make sure I had the angles right. I softened the lines before they were dry.
Step 2 - placing smaller shapes and building up the volumes.
Step 3 - deepening shadows and constantly correcting errors...
Step 4 - more detail and more color. The point at which I am still not happy but done. The painting doesn't look exactly like the photograph, but that's not really my objective in these quick portraits. The lady who commissioned the painting was thrilled and said that I captured the boy's spirit :) It is what I was hoping for, then!