Monday, 29 July 2019

Painting the Baby in Oil

For the baby's flesh tones, I'm using a bit more Permanent Rose and Ultramarine Blue to my original mix.  Her skin is a lot lighter and in this case, is also in shadow.  The Ultramarine greys down the colour so that her skin appears newer and fresher (with no sun damage yet).  She of course has no lines or wrinkles, so make sure you feather off all your different tones for a very smooth and subtle finish.

Wednesday, 24 July 2019

New Painting Project - Australian Mulga Parrot

This is an Australian Mulga Parrot.  My friend's sister took the photo whilst in the Northern Territory.  The colours of this bird are just brilliant.  Bright iridescent greens, blues, reds and yellows.  Everyone in my art class have decided to paint this little beauty.

Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Painting Childrens' Hands in Oils

I think the most important part to painting hands, especially in children's hands, is to get the knuckles (complete with wrinkles), in the right place.  The younger they are, the more the little fingers look like sausages.  The fingers need to be rounded off, using background colours as well as the usual shadow colours (Ultramarine Blue and Scarlet).  It's only the shading and shadows that will help give shape to them.

Always follow your original direction of light (in this case from the right of the figure) and keep to the same angle.  The knuckles will create some shadow, as will the slightly curved wrinkles.  Where the hand may be touching the surface (the leg here) the shadow will be harder, darker and narrow.  As the fingers are just hanging a bit at the end, the shadow under them will be softer, with more colour and gradually merging into the surrounding surface.

Monday, 1 July 2019

How to Oil Paint Curly Hair

Curly hair is a lot harder to paint than straight hair in that there is more detail and it is more time-consuming.  The principles are the same though.  I like to separate the clumps of hair (in this case the curls) with the dark shadow colour you will be using.  At the same time, you are positioning the larger clumps to get the right composition as well as simplifying the whole procedure.  Then it is just a matter of breaking down each clump with your mid-tones, then darks and highlights.

Don't forget to make the outline of the hair very soft, using muted colours.  I try to do a lighter hue against a darker part of the background, and a darker hue against the lighter part.  The hair needs to be feathered off into the face colours as well so that it doesn't look like a wig.

As I've already said, curly hair is quite tricky and you will find yourself going back over it with extra highlights and shadows as I have done! 

Thursday, 27 June 2019

Levels of Depth in Oil Paintings

Well, I've completed the inside of the eagle's wing.  I have a feeling that it is a little too sharp though.  Because this wing is behind the eagle's body, it should be slightly softer and the colours a little muted to push it back.  When I have done more of the main body, I can have a better idea of the different levels of depth needed.  It will be just a matter of rubbing in some purples to soften lines and grey off the colour. 

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Eyes First When Painting a Portrait

So, yes I always paint the eyes first.  It immediately gives the painting life and not just a mask.  I'm just filling in the blanks, leaving out the eyelashes and details for now.  I will darken and highlight when they are dry.

For the flesh tones, I am using Scarlet Lake, Lemon and a dot of Viridian.  I am also experimenting with a Flesh Tint.  Both of the boys have a more ruddy complexion than the girls, and the flesh tint mixed with Alizarin Crimson is giving the dark tones a lovely dark, red/orange.

I'm just loosely making my way around the face with the different tones and hues for now, with a very thin layer of paint.  No doubt I'll be going over this little face quite a few times.

Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Family Portrait Drawing Complete!

It's been 2 years since the last family portrait was done.  Since then I have added another grandchild and our beautiful 12 year old dog.  It's 111cm x 76cm.  I have lightly gessoed over the pencil drawing so it doesn't muddy up the paint - particularly the lighter tones (e.g. skin and white clothing).