Showing posts from August, 2018

Week 39: The Real Jenny Lind

I seem to be slowing down a bit. In fact, I might just be even and not ahead anymore in this 52 Portraits in 52 Weeks challenge. But after this, only 13 more portraits to go! I can do this. (she says, giving herself a pep talk) Recently, I rewatched The Greatest Showman and remembered reading about the real Jenny Lind, and how she described herself as having mousy hair and a potato nose. Certainly not the striking redhead as portrayed in the movie. And by all accounts, a rather different personality. I went and looked her up on the internets and found a painting and a couple of photographs of her and so I began this portrait of the real Jenny Lind, using the painting found on Wikimedia Commons as the base. Although, as you might guess, real is in the eye of the beholder. (I know, I'm so post-modern), but once I drew her left-handed with my Lyra pencil, she became a wee bit wonky. Wonkier than she had been previously depicted, anyway. The next step was pick colors. I had r

Week 38: Connected (52 Portraits in 52 Weeks)

I don't have any progress images to show you this time. It started out as the other half of a two page spread that I gessoed over to make Number 37 and parts of that peek through in her hair. I completed the entire portrait ... and then gessoed over the face. I used the Arteza paints again, using a different set of red, yellow and blue, and I'm getting the hang of them. Using a damp (not wet) brush has helped. I made a process video of this, starting after the paint over of the first face, but I still need to figure out the music side, and at this point, the actual making of portraits is more important than showing them off. So here is the final image. Oh, and why the lines? That's up to you, dear viewer, but I found my eyes stuck either on her nose, or on the trees and not moving, so I literally drew lines to point them at each other and keep your eyes moving about the page. Did that work? Number 39 is already under way.

Week 37 of 52: Winter Hat

This one had quite the journey, starting out as a two page spread and then whited out (using gesso) down to a single page. I didn't use a reference photo for this one, as you can probably tell. Here's the sketch: I had just bought some Arteza acrylic paints. 60 small tubes in lots of lovely colors. However, I did struggle a bit with them. The first was that the paper seemed to soak up the paint such that it seemed I used more than I would with the Goldens or Atelier Interactives. A lot of the paint was transparent or translucent, which is great for glazing, but made for one hell of an ugly stage. But with more paint, I finally achieved the look I wanted for her face, and so headed to other parts of the painting, aiming to use up all the leftover paint in the palette in the process. I switched to using a mix of Faber Castell Pitt Pens, a gold paint pen, white gel pen and white Posca pen for the finer details, outlining some of the design with an XS Faber Castell P

Number 36 of 52 Portraits: Blue

I have been unwell for most of the week as my mostly blank art planner/tracker will attest. Yesterday I settled down for the first time in ages to paint a face, feeling a bit uncertain. The background was leftover paint from the previous portrait. I started with Lyra pencil using my left hand -- which weirdly seems to get the basics of the face correct-ish -- and then right handed for more details (my left hand cannot draw mouths). For the first layer, I used a marker I received in an old @artsnacks box: a Zig Art and Graphic Twin RB+F in Persian Blue. I don't know if it will bleed through like the Tombow markers do, but I suspect they will. The darker color you see here is the Lyra pencil dissolving in the marker. After this I went in with a bit of Titanium White in Golden fluid acrylic to get some highlights and variations in tone, and then used Payne's Grey to make the darkest darks, er, darker. Here she is: Her features are a bit wonky, but that's tota