Thursday, January 10, 2013

Many moons ago I went back home to Fulton, New York and went to a Renaissance Faire that was held in Sterling, I think.  Anyway,  I took a bunch of photographs thinking that one day I might actually paint from one of them.  Well, today I did.  The photograph was actually not very good--too dark, a little out of focus. But looking at it, I remembered why I'd taken the photo in the first place--I loved the woman's face!  She really "looked" the part of a musician (actually,I was thinking more of a milk-maid type, but what do I know?).  So, since I'm still hanging in on the 30/30 challenge (although I'm technically 4 paintings behind), I decided to paint this lady. 
     My word for the new year is "explore," and that's what I did with this painting.  I have a really difficult time with flesh tones. Maybe that's because I've started thinking more about them than I used to. I'm one of those painters who doesn't really plan out a painting: I just jump right in. And that can lead to problems--as in getting the right color flesh tones, or running out of room because I didn't think about spacing....Well,  I've got a ton of books on color and portrait painting, and they all have basic formulas for flesh tones, but somewhere in the middle of making puddles of flesh colors, I forget what I'm doing (because I'm so caught up in the actually PAINTING), that I end up just slapping on color.  But this time, even though I was deviating from the formulas, I figured why not "explore" and see what happens.  And that's what you see above--an exploration of color in flesh tones.  I used yellow ochre, burnt umber, raw sienna,  alizarin crimson, veridian, cad red light, cad red medium--even threw in some ultramarine blue and thalo green....oh, and a little bit of violet too.  Probably not the best way to do a portrait, but I'm pretty pleased with the result.  Might even do a larger version of this one day.  Check back tomorrow for painting #6!

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