Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Portrait update

I've added more layers to the watercolour to define shapes and started adding pastels to block in the hair on top of the watercolour.   This seems to work well over the layer and gives depth with the initial colour and value coming through the layers.

Without the value mapping on the face, I think I prefer it this way and after chatting with the mother of the children we decided to let this one be a softer version.  The other portrait is liked but I may do a softer version of it just for comparison

Adding detail is the fun part of a portrait.  Once I have the main pieces in place then I can add those elements that bring the piece to life.  Highlights, darks, individual hairs all breathe life into a portrait.  The trick is knowing just when to stop.  And that is never an easy call.  I tend to err more on the side of less is more these days, knowing I can always go back and touch up but it is a lot more difficult to take away.


Gary said...

Wow - beautiful work. We leave town for a week and you've taken off here. You are doing well to err on the side of less is more - I tend to get heavy handed and then just bludgeon it to a finish. A nice comparison too.

Jeanette said...

Thanks Gary. I have lots of heavy handedness at times - a drawer full of it!