Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Test 2

Self Portrait
Attempt 2

OK, I'm done laughing at my first self-portrait attempt.  Are you? 

So here is attempt #2.  A little better I think.  Here is what I learned from my second of ten attempts.

What went better:  The "drawing".  I know that I am supposed to draw free hand.  But in a portrait the slightest error in drawing throws the whole thing off and it doesn't look like the person.  I have been developing in my drawing.  I find that I now can draw many things that I couldn't just a few months ago. 

So here is what I did for this one.  I printed out an 8 x 10 ( the size of my panal), held it up to a window face out and scrumbled charcoal on the back over the areas I wanted to draw.  Then I placed the picture face up, charcoal down, on the panal and traced over the outline. The charcoal transferred to the panel.  Much better start! I sealed the charcoal with matte spray varnish.

The hair is better, but I'm still not satisfied with it.  I'm finding that blonde hair is 10 times harder to paint than brown hair.  I tried every brown and yellow in my paint basket.  Finally the last thing I tried, Naples Yellow Light seemed to work the best.  Whew!  What a struggle.

Still working on skin tone.  What I had on here first I ended up wiping off which left a nice toned base.  I think it is pretty good now.  It was looking like I had a really bad sunburn for a while.

On to the next try.  Maybe I will try an underpainting with yellow ochre.  We'll see.


  1. A good job for your first. You shouldn't laugh. Blond hair is difficult....kind of like whites on whites. It is extremely easy to lose your darks. You hang in there because your paintings are great:)

  2. Thanks Cheri! It's ok to laugh. That 1st one was pretty funny. But I can see some improvements in my paintings. slow and steady.


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