Sunday, 6 March 2011

Model Portrait

Last weekend the Guardian colour mag had a lovely cover photo of a beautiful model with fantastic hair. I was so taken with it I decided to try and paint her. Unfortunately due to copyright restrictions I can't show the original photograph so you'll have to use your imagination!

Stage 1 & 2. The drawing and first try at the features.

Hair (!), face and lower area.


THE MODEL! Waterford 16" x 12" Not

She has quite dark skin and striking eyes. As for the hair. Wow! The hair was painted mainly with a combination of Burnt Sienna and Ultramarine Blue mixed partly on the paper. There is a little Burnt Umber, Cerulean Blue and Ultramarine Violet (Rowney PV15) plus some Viridian (Rowney), but the main colours are various mixes of the Burnt Sienna/Ulramarine Blue combination.  The face colour is a mixture of Cadmium Red Light, Yellow Ochre, Quinacridone Gold (PO49) and Quinacridone Rust (Graham PO48). with Ultramarine and Cerulean to darken. The colours in the dress are Ultramarine Violet and Cerulean, heavily diluted. Also small touches of Burnt Umber and Burnt Sienna. I used mainly two brushes. The Isabey Size 6 retractable for the features and Rosemary Size9 Series 33 Kolinsky for most of the rest. I also used a long-handled No 4 W & N Cirrus. Comments welcome.

18 comments:

Mick Carney said...

Great effort Peter, your portrait work has really developed over this year and your use of colour enhances your image making.

Peter Ward said...

Thanks as usual Mick. I do feel I've made some progress over the last year and have kept one or two going back at least a year to compare with present work. Still a way to go though.

CharM said...

Hi Peteris ... this is my first visit to your Blog... Your art is absolutely beautiful! I like that abstract and feel that it speaks from the heart about the horror of wild fires...

CharM said...

I had to come back to say that your portrait is beautifully done! Preserving those white spaces makes it special... but even more, I LOVE her hair!

Peter Ward said...

Thanks for visiting CharM and welcome. Your comments are much appreciated. She does have fantastic hair doesn't she!

bob witte said...

good afternoon (probably night in the uk!), peter. i agree that the hair is the most striking aspect of your painting and is very well done. i am right on the verge of trying to paint some portraits of people of color so your posting today is timely for me. additionally, i am interested in painting native americans so your whole series on them over the last months was very helpful as well. i am also wondering how you became interested in painting native americans. thanks for sharing.

Judy-Joy Bell said...

Absolutely fabulous!!!! Love your palette too!

Peter Ward said...

Hi Bob
Thanks for commenting. If you look at my profile you'll see my interests which highlight the American West, although specifically it is the conflict between the Army/settlers and the Amerindian. As a boy I loved westerns of which Hollywood made sqillions. Not today though. My favourite westerns are those by John Ford although there are several others.
My approach to painting portraits is based on that of Charles Reid and I would recommend his books `The Natural Way to Paint' and his latest (and possibly last) `Watercolour Solutions'.

There are two indian portraits in his last book and searching the web brings up a few more.

Peter Ward said...

Thanks for those kind words Judy.

hap said...

Hi Peter! My goodness, you're becoming so popular!!:-) The hair is good....but you KNOW where my mind is! Yes, skin tone!! All I can say is Wow! you've really to a touch on this one!! Three thumbs up from me!! And the eyes are stunning!! (I like John Ford films too...and John Houston as well!)

Peter Ward said...

Hi Hap. It's being so popular that keeps me going! Seriously though thanks for those comments.
I put a post on Sunday's Daily Wash on WC in response to one of yours but perhaps you didn't read it.

hap said...

I responded to it in the Monday wash (grin) Tacoma is about 30 miles south of Seattle and we have our own waterfront as well. I had fish and chips too...cod, I like halibut just a wee bit better but cod was more reasonably priced yesterday! Sadly mushy peas are not offered as a side dish here ;-( or I would have ordered them! Now, what is your favorite western movie of ALL?

Peter Ward said...

I'll e-mail you on this one Hap because most of my readers (Big Grin) may not be into fish and chips and westerns.

bob witte said...

thanks for the insight. the reason i asked was that i have worked with the lakota people of the oglala sioux tribe on pine ridge reservation in southwestern south dakota. hence my interest. you will most likely recognize this as the location of the site of the infamous "wounded knee massacre." the wounds from this are still deep in the tribal members whose ancestors were killed there.

Peter Ward said...

Hi Bob

Very interesting. I know all about Wounded Knee naturally with my interest, but a book I obtained fairly recently `Encyclopedia of Indian Wars' 1859 -1890 by Gregory Michno states that Wounded Knee was not the "one-sided affair that is usually portrayed" (quote) Apparently the 7th Cavalry losses were only exceeded by those at the Little big Horn.

hap said...

History is rarely objective Peter. Both sides had their own particular views of the events. I suspect there is a lot of truth to be found in both accounts. Same goes for the "incident" in 1973 at the same site.

Rannie Grosvald said...

WOW - I stumbled on your painting by sheer serendipity while exploring "cerulean blue". I think it's fabulous and, if legal and available, I would love a copy of your copy - :-)

Peter Ward said...

Thanks for commenting Rannie. Unfortunately I sold that painting to the husband of a painting friend. I would have loved to have kept it.