14 February 2010

Portrait of My Valentine


I was determined to get this posted today, a charcoal and chalk portrait of my husband. He asked for one after I did the recent portrait of my daughter, using the same materials and methods. The second image is a graphite portrait I drew of him last year. One of those year-to-year comparisons, always fun to see.

A few comments on today's piece.
  • Even though the lighted side of the face draws the eye, my focus was the reflected light on the dark side, inspired by a Zorn painting.
  • The hand (taken from a second photo) was enlarged slightly to make it seem closer and advance out from the picture plane.
  • The symmetry of the facial features is essential to the believability of a portrait, so I always go through and make sure all features are properly aligned. I tend to place the eyes to far apart, so I always check that the outer corner of each eye falls on a line made by connecting the middle of the upper lip to the outer edge of the nose. A good trick, it helps me every time.
  • I had to re-draw Tim's right eye 3 times, the last time it practically drew itself. The redrawing reminded me of how the Impressionists would scrape down paintings at the end of a session and re-paint the identical image again the next day on the same canvas. Sargent and Whistler did it all the time. I can understand how this procedure would fine-tune the rendering, and leave some interesting values/colors on the canvas. I plan to give it a try.

20 comments:

  1. The lighting is so beautiful in your new portrait. I'm really impressed that the hand came from a second photo; it looks totally natural in your drawing.

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  2. These are beautiful..... and it is so nice to have accompanying notes and get inside and behind the works creation.

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  3. This is a wonderful portrait of a handsome and willing model. I especially love the light between his fingers also.

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  4. Bravo, Candace, so wonderful. Happy Valentines to you and your Valentine (I just made it by ten minutes!)

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  5. Aaahh...both are beautiful portraits Candace! A lovely gift for him on Valentine's Day :)
    Love the depth you've created with the play of light and shadow.And the story of the portrait's progress was also interesting and informative. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Beautiful. Congratulations.
    Daniel D. Peaceman, writer and editor

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  7. The new portrait drawing of your husband is a real masterpiece, and the connection between you and the subject comes across powerfully too, on many levels, only one of which is how he is looking directly at you.

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  8. Hmm my comment must not have gone through... Great work I like them both. Awesome as always!!!

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  9. I like these two drawings Candace but must add that the new one irradiates a beautiful presence, pretty unique and soulful.

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  10. Thanks to everyone for your positive comments. While Art is a singular experience, it benefits from sharing. Best regards.

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  11. I have to agree with Pierre. I don't know if it was intentional technique or not but from your last year posting to this one there is so much more maturity shown in your skills. you are truely doing some wonderful art.

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  12. I'm with Pierre ;-) The latest drawing has a softness and intimacy that draws you in and his direct gaze is so compelling. Beautiful work indeed.

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  13. Absolutely beautiful, Candace. I adore the light in the charcoal, and that shadowed side is brilliant.

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  14. Nice work Candace. I am just beginning to understand that feeling, "I have to post something today". It's so easy to let time slip away without posting.

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  15. Excellent! And what a handsome model!

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  16. A great intimacy and of course your technical capability, but the intimacy is most special...you connect subject to all of us and we get a sense of the man...my best.

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  17. Beautifully romantic! Those drawings of your husband are so personal and tender. Great blog!

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  18. This is an amazing work, beautiful portrait that u did x) i will follow u to see more works from u *.* nice job

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