The official start of my Residence is this Tuesday April 1st. Last Tuesday however the Artist's Drop In Group was held in the same location and the space was active and interesting with several of us sketching and painting. It might be a hard act to follow with just myself trying to do portraits. There was one of the locals spending a few hours staying warm and dry, sitting in front of the fireplace, so as he was nodding off to sleep I took pictures and started sketching him. I asked John later if he would like to come back this week and let me try painting his portrait. He might be my first subject. The sketch was pretty quick but small, trying to capture a sense of the planar structure. This is going to be my beginning steps, first strike the arabesque then search out the planes.
This is as far as I will go on this candid shot and I was trying to understand some further steps into the cross-hatching of values after having tried to capture the planes correctly. Then I discovered the paper I was drawing on was not helping me but hindering my attempts to lay down dark values and this created a new problem of me not understanding value compression. Techniques that I discovered I need to practice are my cross-hatching proficiency, how to get value compression, how to keep my values simple and to keep them to a limited number.
I may not be doing many hands in my first portrait studies but I do know they will be an important element to know how to paint when I start portraits at three quarter length and full length. To start though I will concentrate on head and shoulders first.
Today I was going to draw a Rembrandt head study but this hand caught my eye and I realized practicing hands will be equally important to study.
Here is a copy I've attempted, can you guess the painting it's from?
The fog was thick all morning and didn't start to clear till well past noon.
I've been back after 6 weeks house sitting in the most beautiful location on the water, views were amazing rain or shine.
I painted some everyday and got out when the weather was decent. Had the use of a beach and dock out front but had to consider tides for the beach. Forest and mountains were all around and finding something that caught my eye was no problem I just had to go out the door and there was a view although the views from inside were spectalur I painted in the studio most days as it was available for me to use and had wonderful light skylights above and wall length windows felt like I was outside inside.