21 February 2015

Triptych Portrait in Progress

I'm working on a triptych portrait of my daughter.  This is the first of the 3 panels, based on preliminary sketches I posted a few weeks ago.  I like the looseness and abstraction of the hair/body contrasting with the facial rendering.

Amanda Triptych (panel 1) 11x14", oil on board

Using the color study method described a while back, I created a small painting on vellum to work out flesh tones and hair and background colors.  I also painted a portrait of Amanda from life to establish the values and get her hair color right.  I did all my homework.

Color study for Amanda Triptych, 5.5x7", oil on mylar

Amanda, study from life, 10x12" oil on linen

In addition, I'm trying something new...starting my paintings with a looser underpainting/first color lay-in than I'm used to.  I like the change.  I came across this approach in "Norman Rockwell Illustrator".  Rockwell said he always did the first color lay-in very quickly "to generate some accidents to play with".  I like those accidents.  It's a more subconscious way to paint.