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Transient

This is part two on recent paintings created from memory.  I decided to write about these two paintings in particular because to me they actually go together as companion pieces.  Though quite different in color and lighting, they have similar compositions and themes. Last week we took a day trip down to North Carolina to visit family, and to do that we had to pass through Hillsville (appropriately named).  We were dealing with a cool, damp, cloudy, rainy day–not great for traveling.  There were pockets of thick fog where you couldn’t see much beyond the bend, and then there were...

"Throw a little Tolkien and Lewis in there and I think you have something."

I don’t usually paint from memory, but Alison is encouraging me to do so more and more.  I usually take photos and work from those, and in the old days I would go out and paint on location.  This is the first of two blogs on two paintings worked from memory. Recently I finished reading The Lord of the Rings…again, and I always find new little nuggets each time I read it through.  Towards the end of the book when Frodo and Sam are in Morder struggling to get to the end of their journey, Sam begins to lose hope, but then he sees something: “…There, peeping among the...

Finished at Last!

Well, here is the “bearded wonder” in all his glory.  Though somewhat difficult to tell in the photo, I darkened the background to get rid of the competing “aura” around the back of the head.  The portrait took 10 sessions to complete, with sessions 1-8 taking approximately 15-30 minutes each.  The ninth session lasted a little over an hour, and that is where most of the fine-tuning took place.  The last session took maybe 15 minutes to add last minute details like moles (sorry Phil), extra hairs, etc. This is an acrylic painting on a 12″ x 12″ stretched...

Almost Done…

After adding the hair and beard details, the painting is almost finished.  I reworked the background, lightening the area to the left of the head and on the lower right.  The more I looked at it today, as I kept coming back to the painting from time to time, I realized that I made the background a tad too light.  While I want the background to give a definite edge to the back of the head, I don’t really want the strong “aural” effect that the painting has in this photo, so tonight I reworked the background (again!) and added a few more details to the shirt and beard.  I...

Baby Steps

So you can see I’m making slow progress (but progress nonetheless!), working and re-working the skin and background, nudging little highlights and shadows here and there.  Next stop–hair and beard...

Blue is the Winner

So after tinkering with the image on the computer, changing background colors back and forth (I played with blue, teal, and brown), I finally decided on the darker blue so that the colors of the face would pop a little more against the background.  I decided to push the color darker than I had originally planned, because I want the eye to go immediately to the face, then meander around the head.  If the color was brighter, there would be somewhat of a competition between the face and the hue behind it–it can be done, but that’s not my goal for this...

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