Thursday, May 30, 2013

Oil Painting Portrait on Panel, The Woman with Dreads

A couple weeks ago our figure drawing group was working with one of our fabulous models, who has multiple tattoos and a head full of dreadlocks, ribbons and beads.  She posed for a couple portrait shots for me.

I worked on a panel that had already seen a couple of failed paintings, and got a fresh coat of oil primer.  When I primed it, I didn't worry about going all the way to the edges - I let a little bit of the previous layers hang around.

This is the "alien" stage...just a quick indication of the size of the head and starting to mass in shadows.

Blocked in some large areas of color.  I wanted the first few layers to be a bit more bold - I know I can always tone down the color, so I intentionally chose a more saturated orange

Considered the background, started playing around with blues and greens.  Very little detail in the eyes. Mostly shadows.

A few indications of the dreads on the rights

I like this stage, where there are transparent and opaque layers of paint.  Also, working on an oil primed panel, I can still wipe away a lot of paint

Getting a little closer to the skin tone, deeper shadows in the hair.  The shadows and light across her forehead were difficult.  I had to rework the area several times.

Deciding on a background color, and blocking in the rest of her shoulders.  I am using just oil paint and a touch of thinner, no other medium.  Rosemarie brushes all the way.

More interest added to the dreads, including some of the blue ribbon she has woven through her hair. I also toned down the highlights above her eyebrows, focusing more on the highlight on top of her forehead.  Three highlights was too distracting

(20" x 16")


Unknown said...

Love seeing how this painting come to life, Kristina. Thank you for sharing your progress and painting.

Krystyna81 said...

You're welcome, Lucy. I really enjoy looking back and revisiting the painting process as well. I appreciate your comment :)

Ryan said...

Hi Kristina,

I realise this is an old post, but just wondering what you meant by only a little medium. Were you just adding something akin to linseed oil? Were your expressive brush strokes in the underpainting with turpentine / MS?