After eight days of study, beginning with a charcoal drawing, a Verdaccio underpainting, and finally adding color, I am happy to say that this is complete. I could have gone in with more details but I chose to leave it as. The medium used was a mix of Venetian turpentine, damar varnish, and linseed oil. I learned so much using this process and will be doing this again in the future. I am curious to see how this old master’s technique and medium may be applied to a landscape painting. I guess I will find out soon!
Here are some progress pics:
Charcoal underpainting and beginning of the Verdaccio painting….
Here I used many colors to create the illusion of natural flesh. The same color in the background was used in the face.
This is an underpainting done with charcoal. I will painting over this in verdaccio, which is done using a combination of grays, greens, and brown color. It is a technique used in classical paintings. This is my rendition of a self-portrait by Rembrandt. I will be finalizing the details this weekend before painting this. This is the first time I have gone this detailed on a drawing before painting.
My first drawing sold was based on this same area I visit regularly, Triplett Park. It is a natural wetland that has been turned into a recreation area and contains a running path, outdoor exercise equipment, a walking trail, biking trail, and plenty of beautiful birds. It is a great way to preserve a wonderful and rare area. I titled this painting Serenity because it truly encapsulates this place. Again, I used several colors within the vegetation in shadow to maximize the light shining through. This is a similar technique I use when painting still-life and even portraits. This painting will be featured in my upcoming show in December in Savannah, GA.
12″ x 16″ Panel
This painting began as a simple wetland landscape, but I decided to turn it into a beach. The water was painted without any reference so I had to really get into the mindset of how water moves. It was particularly challenging to make the water appear as if moving forward. I used many shades of blue, green, and pink for the waves. I found that using more than one color, even within the shadows of the trees, creates a more dynamic painting.
Oil on Panel…
I had a great time at Qiang Huang’s workshop at St. Simon’s Island, GA. I met many great artists including the well-renowned artist himself. It was great to work with a man who has studied under great artists like David Leffel. His loose brush strokes are well coordinated to enhance the viewer’s attention. He strongly emphasized the use of undeveloped parts of the painting with the focal point to create a contrast. I love incorporating his expressionistic style with my own contemporary realist style.
My finished piece on canvas:
I am painting this for an exhibit I want to participate in. I ended up ordering 12 cotton panels from the Jerry’s Artarama website. I usually avoid painting portraits on cotton panels because of the unpredictable quality and texture. I struggled through this painting because of this, but the turnout is not too bad. The painting seems to absorbed by the cotton and so I had to paint multiple layers to maintain the saturation levels I wanted. I will have to apply another level of gesso before I paint on these. I am a big fan of linen, especially the Senso linen panels, and of the gesso boards. I think the panels will be better suited for landscapes, which is why I purchased them in the first place.
I recently went back to oil after working with acrylic for some time. I must say that I have become fond of oil paint and have even enhanced my knowledge of the use of the wet-on-wet technique. I was able to finish the painting below in two days working 3 hours each time. Liquin has been a life savor when it comes to the drying time. Still, I am finding that I do not need it as much as I thought. I still may go back to acrylic for certain projects, but there is nothing like oil. I used a mixed of brands, which include Grumbacher, Utrecht, WN Winton, and Williamsburg. I have never had any issues with these brands.