Friday, February 24, 2012

Acrylic Demo - for Valentine's Day!!

Here's a demo I did a few weeks ago that I just touched up to bring it to a bit of finish - maybe not totally finished - but hey!  I got a Bill Cosby piece to paint, so here it is :).  I wanted to show my class some simple color blocking and dry brush technique. so the steps went like this:
1. Mount a sheet of 140 lb Arches Cold Press to a wood panel, using PVA, and the trim the excess off the edges.  Let it dry for an hour.
2. Paint in a washy sky-y background, draw portrait on top in very, very light pencil.
3.  Block out the face (the shape of the contour of the face) in red oxide (a nice cheap opaque pigment) with a little payne's grey mixed in to give it a slight variation, being careful of the edges.
4. Block out the hair shape and eyebrows in payne's grey, again being careful of the edges.
5. Start into lighter tones to "pull" out midtone highlights.  Basically, stating to shape out the cheekbones, bridge of the nose, ears, back of the neck, and forehead - using dry brush
6. Move up the the value scale being careful to not just keep mixing in white, but using cadmium yellow, napthol red, and light portrait pink to keep it warming - not just lightening, using dry brush.  So far, I've pretty much just used a #6 Filbert.
7. Use light on the sky as a high point for the highlights - in this case, the slightly whited out light portrait pink for the highlight.
8. Descend down into cooler tones and dark from the red oxide mid level, using payne's grey and dry brush.
9.  Use a bit of a napthol crimson wash on the upper left side of the forehead to allow the right side to pop a bit a more.
10. Wash a bit of brilliant blue into the mouth/chin area.
11. Realize you should have been painting the shirt, tie, and jacket at the same time and add them in.:)
12. Throw in plane for extra depressing affect.
13.  Besides prep and background painting, about two hours - not bad, have a cup of coffee.
14. Happy belated Valentine's Day!!

Here's what the end texture looks like.  Pretty pourous - but you can see how the wash on the left side smooths it out a bit.  I want the right side rough - closer the viewer, and remembering that rough surface come forward, smooth surfaces recede.  And - if you look close, you can see the bad photoshop highlights in the eyes I tossed in before I painted them in the finish above.  eeesh.


Jesse said...

I always do step 11 with the ears. Every time.

Andrew DeGraff said...

It's always something. Swear to god. Drive you crazy doesn't it when you do the same oops over and over again? :)