Regarding the brushwork, I tried very hard to leave well enough alone. I'm beginning to understand how this relates to individual style. What each artist considers "well-enough" supports their aesthetic. When we overwork (eg. not leaving well enough alone) the uniqueness disappears. The work becomes generic.
|Self-portrait, 9x12 oil on board|
Some comments and the progression...
Next comes a loose underpainting in raw umber to set the values.
I refine the smaller shapes on a second pass. This is the "leave well enough alone" stage.
Finally I add highlights to round out the forms, trying not to overdo them. I like the contrast of the unfinished background against the face, so I consider it done at this point.
Recently I changed to a low chroma palette. At Watts, students started out with a modified Zorn palette. Cad red light, yellow ochre, ultramarine blue, ivory black. I now realize this was the wrong palette for me, way too chromatic. My skin tones were always too hot. It's better now.