Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Mining a vein

The Bedroom 1
10 x 8
The Bedroom 2
14 x 11
These 2 paintings were an exploration of a back lit figure done from some photos that I took of my son.  He's over 6' tall and not at all feminine, but I changed his gender for these paintings while keeping the lighting and the grace of his gesture.  In the source photo below, you can see the similarities and also where the paintings diverge.  I was particularly excited by the cool, high key shadows in the white quilt and the expanse of light falling across its top plane.

Always fascinating is the amount of both warm and cool colour that makes up a shadow. Depending on reflected wall colour, local flesh colour, and the temperature of the light outside, there are multiple different hues that can be layered into a shadow.  These colours energize the shadow and make it descriptive of both the figure and its surroundings.  It's important, though, to keep the shadow application flat; any texture in the paint will make that area catch light and jump out of its recessive place.  I save my textural paint for the lights and somewhat in the mids.

At some point, I'll use this image again for a larger painting in which my goal will be to capture the blur of his movement.  I'll even allow him to keep his gender.
If it works, I'll show you.

Happy painting!

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