Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Using Colour in Portraits to add Vitality

Don't be afraid to add some strong colours in the highlights.  I have emphasised a strong orange/purple light throughout my portrait of the 5 kids.  I will tone these colours down when I start to feather them off into my flesh tones and shadow areas.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Final Touches to the Seascape Painting


When the painting was fairly dry, I went from top to bottom with some lovely clean highlights of oranges, light purples and apricot pinks.  I added the lone bird with a mid-tone Ultramarine Blue and Cadmium Red.  Make sure the bird is very soft around the edges to blend into the background.  Dab some of the surrounding background colours into the corresponding edges of the bird to help with this effect.  Just need to sign my name at the bottom now.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Breaking Up Flat Areas in an Oil Painting



I am now going back into the water and adding in more ripples.  There will be more detail as you come forward, so more darker and bigger ripples as you paint toward the shoreline.  Try not to leave large areas blank in a painting as they will be flat and lifeless.  Just a few dots or dashes is all that is needed sometimes.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Establishing the Darks First in Portrait Painting

Fifth and last face to paint in my portrait!

As Issy has quite dark hair, I wanted to get the darkest darks in as a guide to the shadows on her face.  I've painted in a dark blue/brown for the hair, then blended this into the side of her face with a dark orange.  As I brush towards the middle of the face, I have lightened the orange and made it a bit brighter.  I tend to make it a bit more colourful for the first layer of paint, then soften and tone it down later.

I've roughly made a dark red/purple for the shadow on the forehead which will blend down into the orange shadows.  All these colours and shadows are in keeping with the rest of the faces.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Checking your Progress When Painting Multiple Faces in Oil

I have gone over the entire face looking for any differences from my photo references.  If you are not sure of something, it doesn't hurt to remeasure and correct before you move on.  Stand back and analyse -

Is the light source the same throughout the painting?
Are the colours, shadows and highlights consistent with the other faces?
Do I have the right amount of reflective light from the surrounding figures and clothes when they are done?
Are the edges correct - soft and hard?
Most importantly, is that Khye?

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Mixing a Base Colour for Portraits in Oil

I use Scarlet and Lemon to make an orange colour first, then slowly introduce Pthalo Green for a dirty greyed-off colour.  This is usually my base colour that I use throughout the portrait.  Add some white to half the mix for a lighter colour, halve again with more white for a very light mix.

Areas such as the nose, cheeks and lips are ususally a bit pinker so I add some Permanent Rose to the base colour for this.  In my portrait, the girls' and Kacey's faces are quite pale, so their flesh tone had a dot of Permanent Rose added to the base colour.

Here, Khye has a darker complexion, so I have added a little Ultramarine Blue to the base colour and no Permanent Rose. 

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Keeping the Colours Balanced in an Oil Painting

I have brushed in the sand and water reflections with a mix of Naples Yellow Reddish and Lemon.  I'm just getting rid of the white canvas that is left while at the same time experimenting with the orange colours.  For the darker reflections, I'll use the Cadmium Yellow, Cobalt and Cadmium Red Light as they were used in the sky.  Once you start a painting and have picked out all your colours, try not to introduce any new colours.