You may feel this is not technically a portrait…but I like it as a portrait of my oldest daughter who loves to change the color of her nails no matter what time of day or night:) This was the other abandoned drawing from last summer I found a week or so ago and decided to put the watercolor in this week.
Alex Powers, in his book, talks about two different ways of rendering a portrait: Using the Paper-Doll Relationship or the Silhouette Relationship. I quote: “The paper-doll relationship has the white shape coming forward in space as the dark shape recedes. The only way to make a light shape come forward in space in a painting is to surround it on three or four sides with dark…The silhouette is the opposite of the paper-doll relationship of values in space. The dark is in front, and the light is behind.” pgs. 44-45 margins. This portrait is different from the others thus far, in that it is an example of the paper-doll relationship. It was fun putting in all those dark luscious colors, but at one point I thought I had ruined the painting…
I am finding with each of these portraits, that I’m having a recurring experience: I take a deep breath and begin painting. I start with a color, any color and I respond to that color, that shape, that value and so on. Pretty soon, the thought goes through my head, “Uh oh, this is not going to work. These colors are all wrong, they won’t hold together, they are too wild.” Water and pigment oozles and wazzles in places I hadn’t meant for it to, edges become too hard or too soft, or it just feels out of control. I stick with it. And eventually, it feels like pieces might be falling into place…”maybe this won’t be so bad after all. Maybe, just MAYBE, I can salvage this, pull it off.” And then, what-do-you-know? It’s there, the finished painting. And I’m pleased. To be sure, there are adjustments to be made, minor (yet major) things to resolve, alter, shift; but it’s there…I can see that whatever was out of control has become a pleasing whole.
Perhaps I’m too easily pleased with my paintings. I do think this is something I struggle with… That of not being able to view my work absolutely unbiased and critically. But that’s ok…I’ll grow in that too. Oh, and here’s the drawing for this one:
Thanks again for dropping in! I’m hoping your drawing and painting journeys are going well for you!