Thursday, January 02, 2014

Seven minus five

kiora 2 sm

My grand daughter will be seven years old this month.  I don’t know how that happened as only a moment ago she was a baby.  Time definitely seems to speed up as I age, so I thought I’d better get a move on and paint this portrait of her before she grows up or I can’t remember how to paint.

I took a photo of her when she was around two years old.  Fresh from the bath and anxious to get her hands on my camera.  The light was just right and the look was perfect.  But the painting sat in my head over time with a few half hearted attempts to do justice to it that never quite worked out.

Now, on the edge of her turning seven, I wanted to try once again.  After the bustle of Christmas and the adventure of New Year’s, life can settle into a degree of normality or at least be quieter for awhile.  This little side painting is a good diversion and a break from larger boats, water and palette knives.

Kiora working drawing sml

Its in progress and the top image is the result of two evenings’ work.  Her colouring is very pale with blonde hair so getting the correct skin tone that keeps that northern European complexion but not making her look like a ghost or a frozen child is the challenge.

I love her hands most in this I think.  Its as if she was feeling the camera in them before it was there, fingers touching, anticipating. I’m still working on refining shapes and blocking in colour before I start working on the values more.  I like the process of creating a portrait and watching a face emerge from nothing.  Its magical, frustrating, challenging and rewarding all at once.

kiora 1 sm

Its in oil on 11 x 14 gessoed masonite board.  I love the slight texture that the gesso gives when applied with a nap roller.  In fact, it would likely make a good pastel surface too.  As always, I start with a detailed drawing.  This was done on tracing paper, so I could make adjustments as needed, then transferred to the board.  Then I start mixing colour and seeing what works, adjusting as I go.


Gary L. Everest said...

Happy New Year, Jeanette,
It's a wonderful beginning! I love the skin tones already and look forward to seeing the completed painting, especially those hands.
Like you, I'm ready for normalcy to return to life. Not that we did much for the holidays. We're still alone here, so "quiet" would be the word of choice to describe our recent days.
I hope you have a wonderful 2014!

Celeste Bergin said...

Very delicate! :)

Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

you can def. see the family resemblance :)
looking really good, always jealous of people that can paint portraits lol

Jeanette Jobson said...

Gary, Happy New Year to you also. Its difficult to get skin tones this pale without looking really chalky and of course the camera and monitor fight me all the way.

At this point in life, quiet is good for me.

Celeste, thanks for your support.

I see a little bit of several people in her Jen. I guess the child changes as she grows and these baby features evolve into her own.

Portraits are just tigers without fur. :) said...

I love all the colors you see in her skin. Beautiful painting

Jeanette Jobson said...

Thank you, glad you enjoy it.

Sue Pownall said...

Happy New Year.

This is a lovely painting already.

Like the new blog header

Jeanette Jobson said...

Happy New Year Sue. Thank you, it was time there was a change.