View Full Version : Blues Mama Watercolour Portrait Demo

10-24-2003, 02:32 PM
While I was doing the skin demo earlier, I had another WC member come up with a suggestion of doing a demo on darker skin tones and I thought it was a great idea! So, I complied. I believe it was al 22 who asked.
I was thinking that I don't get the privilege of being asked to paint dark skinned persons that often for my commissions, unfortunately, and was craving working in those rich tones for a change.
This reference image was provided by Dana Design. Thanks!

10-24-2003, 02:39 PM
I use the same palette for any medium I work in. It is all a matter of using more of certain colours and less of others, depending on what I am painting, and not changing pigments. Of course, I don't use Naples Yellow in watercolour as it is a white containing pigment therefore very opaque. I do, however, use Cobalt blue (also white containing) as I find this colour extremely versatile for dropping in shots of electric shadows or reflections. It is also a great toning down or greying down colour when used thinnly over areas of colour that you want to tone down the vibrancey of or recede things in the background in landscapes. It also works well in shadows.
My colours are: Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Alizarin Crimson, Ultramarine Blue, Viridian Green and the Cobalt. I don't use pure black, preferring to mix and let my darks blend while working. I find that they are richer darks this way. Pure tube black seems to not balance with the rest of my palette. If you like using black and adding colour to it for darks, by all means continue. People do what they like and should not let others tell them how and what to and not to use. This is just info on how I work and if it is of use, then great! If not, then not to worry.
I also do not prefer to use masking fluids or mediums so I cannot demonstrate that at all. I am used to leaving my whites and scrubbing back if needed, from them. I also don't ever want to have to use white paint as it stands out as a different medium to me, on my work, the few times I have had to use it to correct a highlight in an eye, etc. Again, these are not rules. Continue to do what works for yourself.
I don't bother rinsing my palette off in between paintings as you can see here. It is another white ceramic dinner plate.
You can see the little drops of colour in the center area. I have the cobalt off to the side and have not replenished it for awhile. You can let watercolour dry thank goodness, then come back anytime and use it.

10-24-2003, 02:55 PM
Here are the 3 brushes I tend to always use. The center is a Stevenson's pure sable brush I have had since the age of 20 It was told to me to be a worthwhile investment and the only brush I would ever need to use, in most cases. It came to a tiny point for detail and it was fat as it got to the base, for large areas. Basically, as long as I kept it like that by caring for it, it would last a lifetime. You just rinse and bring it to a point with your fingers or with your mouth. I paid $50, on sale, in 1986. It was my little gift to myself the second year of college. Well, my mother used it for painting ceramic garden statues about 3 or 4 yrs later and it wrecked it. It never came to a point again. To buy this now would be over $100.00, probably about $120.00-$150.00. But, it still works amazingly for backgrounds and larger areas. It leaves great shapes and blends and drags back colour well. So, that tells me that one expensive brush is definately worth buying, considering it works better than some cheaper brushes I have bought, when they are new even.
The blue brush is my main painting brush. It is a Windsor Newton Cotman #6 round. It is not expensive, maybe around $14? The small brush is a #1 that I use rarely, only for tiny details I cannot get to with the other brush. All depends on the size of the portrait or the people I am painting in a painting.
Oh, paper. I used to work on Strathmore cold press illustration board. Basically, watercolour paper adhered to a backing. It is less toothy than watercolour paper though. I loved it. Duraable and some tooth plus no curling or buckling to worry over. It also allows wonderfully smooth blending to watercolour. I now use Aquarelle, 300lb. I am not sure if this is by Arches or not. The ones labelled Arches are great papers, Arches makes wonderful paper, but I find that I cannot use it the way I like. I tend to love to remove pigment or scrub back pigment, for highlights. Arches seems to take the pigment more permanently right away, then I like. I scrub back usually before the area is completely dry and in doing so over and over, can eat some papers and make them come apart and cause little surface fuzz. Strathmore paper and board does nto do this at all. Bainbridge I find does for sure (an illustration board). Crescent Board, although a beautiful surface, discolours over a few years.

Alan Cross
10-25-2003, 04:38 AM
Great info looking forward to seeing more...
Alan :)

10-25-2003, 11:35 AM
Looking forward to your demo, Joss.

10-25-2003, 11:53 AM
This is very interesting Joss, I'm also looking forward to seeing more....

10-25-2003, 12:52 PM
I looked at the image of your palette an thought:
- Aaah, interesting interpretation.
I even saw the face of Blues Mama somewhere in the middle.

No more beer today, thanks. :cool:


Dana Design
10-26-2003, 01:38 AM
Darn! I wish you were doing this in oil. I'm still learning how to mix color for my oil portraits and would love to know which colors to use.

Guess I'll have to go and see Harry.


10-30-2003, 09:44 AM

10-30-2003, 01:17 PM
I am certain it will be informative as always.


10-31-2003, 12:20 PM
Hi all: OK, was not lazy last night and put our new keyboard on.
Here is the first progress.
I am dropping in the defining shapes and contours loosely. Just using the medium size blue round brush.
My colours are yellow ochre with a hint of crimson off and on. I have a little mix of purples that I can grab from already too. I have introduced the purples in some of the shadow and dark detail areas so far, but very subtle so as not to go too dark. I don't want to go too fast and wreck the little sparkling highlights around either.
Dropped in pretty well pure ultramarine and some crimson to start establishing the background balance and colour. I want a slightly vibrant deep background to suggest stage lighting and drama for her and to make the warm tones in her face pop out.
Not workign too wet and dragging pretty dryish colour around where wanted. Leaving whites.

10-31-2003, 12:38 PM
WOW, this is going to be fabulous! THanks for the WIP too! When this is done it's going to be an awesome portrait.:) ;)

10-31-2003, 12:39 PM
Joss...this is so helpful. ..two elementary questions---Do you wet your paper? Is your paper hot or cold press? Looking forward to folowing this...

10-31-2003, 12:54 PM
looking great so far Joss!!

I am going to study this demo more carefully

fascinating watching you work


10-31-2003, 12:55 PM
Hi Mary: No, I never pre-wet my paper. Sometimes my first layer leaves it a bit damp and I can then make use of some great controlled bleeding where wanted though, on my second layers..
It is coldpress. Hotpress has no tooth to it.
I use 300lb most often but this is 140lb. Being small and because I don't work real wet makes using 140lb ok. If I see any slight buckling, I leave the area till it is drier.
Ok, I forgot to go over paper preparation that I use. I always soak my piece in the tub for 5 mins. I then staple gun it on and wait till it is dry. You don't really have to soak 300 lb paper but I do anyway.
At the end, I cut my image out leaving a good 2" or so border around it for matting and framing.

10-31-2003, 01:03 PM
Thanks for the link in the WC forum Joss and for the WIP...........thus far very informative.....as usual.....!!!


Alan Cross
10-31-2003, 01:06 PM
Nice start..
Alan :)

10-31-2003, 02:16 PM
btw I've rated this thread a 5!!!



10-31-2003, 02:43 PM
**Pulling up a chair in eager anticipation**

Thanks for doing this Joss.... I'll be following along! :)

10-31-2003, 03:40 PM
Waiting eagerly too !

10-31-2003, 04:24 PM
Very interesting. Thanks for taking the time to do a demo!


10-31-2003, 04:34 PM
Thanks for the answers......enjoying watching you work:)

10-31-2003, 05:07 PM
You are very welcome.
Here is today's ending progress.
I have worked further in the face. I am getting into the purples in the face now as well. Mainly it is still a thin damp layering of ochre with a hint of crimson. I am using a rosey purple in some of the skin areas too. There is some dabs of the cobalt/green mix in the areas of the eyes and beside the nose and in the hairline too.
The background I added a bit more ultramarine and let a few dabs of sienna bleed in spots to add some depth to it. I washed in a couple drops of ochre and crimson as well. I want that vibrant coloured light look but some darkness for depth. I always try to leave some spots of the paper or leave some of the single wash areas too, in backgrounds. I like using the colour fairly dry in sots also, for texture and sparkle. I drag it around to form interesting shapes and negative/positive areas. I am not keen on single wash flat colours in my backgrounds.
The hair I have started in with a neutral. I am using the paint fairly dry here too so that I get those nappy rough edges and texture that is in her hair. The colours I am grabbing from are a purple/sienna and some cobalt. I have added some green to the cobalt so that I can get that steely grey look that she has to her hair. I am making sure I keep the warm skin tones up in the hairline area so there is nto a definite dividing line. Hair comes from skin and does not sit on top of it so I try to work into the scalp with the skin tones before ever starting in the hair. I am leaving white of the paper to create the highlights in the hair. Working almost dry and letting the brush drag around is leaving nice texture which works for curly or kinky hair as well as very short or shaved hair, like in beards as well. I dot alot with the brush instead of paintign strokes. I find that I do that with watercolour alot. Dropping in a single push down of the brush and lettign the shapes overlap, build layers and visually blend where needed.
I am finding that this portrait is wanting to remain a little loose as opposed to tightly detailed. It works well for the mood of it I think.
Note: For the image. It appears a little washed out looking from my digital camera. I will scan the finished image for the final for sure.

10-31-2003, 05:08 PM
I am a ding dong at times! lol
Here she is.

Alan Cross
10-31-2003, 05:10 PM
really taking shape....nice work.
Alan :)

Strawberry Wine
10-31-2003, 10:58 PM
Eagerly watching this one and printing up your notes on colour.


11-01-2003, 12:11 AM
Ohhh Yeh! Keep it fresh at all costs. Good work on this.

11-01-2003, 03:51 AM
Wonderful WIP Jocelyn!

I'm in on this! :D


11-01-2003, 05:14 AM


11-01-2003, 01:08 PM
Wow, have to follow this with interest... Bookmarking it...

11-01-2003, 01:30 PM
Fascinating! I love all your work and I'm eagerly anticipating the completion of this one.

Sue Galos
11-01-2003, 04:49 PM
I'm in.


11-01-2003, 04:53 PM
this looks GREAT!..i like the way you explain as you go along too,
ive don a few W-I-P'S and i always feel strange cause its like talking into an answering machine,but these are my favorite kind of WI-P.its like a mini-book

11-01-2003, 06:47 PM
Hi Joss

That picture is a great pick you made. Really neat photo. Sure grabs the moment.

I know you will do it justice like you have done the others.

I can hardly wait.

Tnx for doing these by the way


11-01-2003, 07:29 PM
Thanks very much everyone. I am more than happy to do things like this.
I will be doing one or 2 new progress posts this week. I have 3 commissions in and 2 pieces I am doing for personal work/sale so I stagger what I do every day. I need to work on different pieces so I can go to somethign else if I feel one is not working on a particular day. Mood seems to dictate painting ability sometimes. I guess this happens with every job.
Have a good weekend all!

lyn lynch
11-01-2003, 10:54 PM
I am going to have to lurk in Portraiture more often! I'm thrilled to see this comprehensive WIP--excellent images, and marvelous text--I, for one, will wait for progress on this WIP, got to put food on the table!

I did not understand the rationale for soaking 300#; I could understand if you did not let it completely dry before you begin painting. You must have amazing control of first washes to work on dry paper. I have my first washes really loose to compensate for the Cad Red sticking, do you think a pre-soak and dry would help w/this problem?

I'm excited to see the dry brush parts take hold, as this is another area I am struggling with. I'm using a wonderful Isabey, but still, my brush is too wet for a proper drybrush.

I'm dying...DYING..looking at the palette. Clean it! No, I'll clean it! I use the same palette for every painting, too, but still the Virgo in me insists on a proper cleaning every 3 months or so. DYING!!!!

I snagged this photo as I'd like to try it, too. It's Excellent!! Thanks, Dana, from the snagger. I'm sure you won't mind, Joss, as my painting will be nothing like yours.

Dana Design
11-02-2003, 01:49 PM
I'm also watching this piece develop! It's going to be wonderful! You're doing a great job, Joss, and I'd love to see what you're going to do with it also, fookie.

I'm in the midst of doing oil floral macros but plan to get to my Blues Mama at some point. If anyone is looking for it in the ref library, I put it under "woman, black, female".



11-02-2003, 01:55 PM
Fookie!!!!!!!!!!! Hi there!
I definately want to see yours. I love your style.
I know I know, it is just a habit to soak all my paper. Some things I learned in my teens I just can't let go of and it becomes like a routine I guess. That is one of them. lol! When it dries again it tightens it like a canvas and I get absolutely No buckling. But, I really don't work wet enough for it to matter. But, I do it anyway. lol I may want a wet wet background and even with 300lb I have had a ripple here and there.
Lol! I like my palette like that because some of the mixes left from other paintings may be useful to me. I just wipe areas clean if I need to start pure. I tend to start pure with skin only. Other things I don't worry.
See you all alter.

11-02-2003, 03:03 PM
nice work, Joss..thanks for the WIP

11-04-2003, 07:49 PM
Ok, I finished up something that needed to be done then went back to this again today.
Here is my progress to date. I am dropping in colours off the end of the brush really, not like paint strokes or line work. I am basically touching where I want my shapes to go, building up structure like that.
This works well in the eyebrow area for instance. I don't want lines, I want shapes with breaks in them, keeping the highlights where they should be. If I want to tone down a highlight area away from the paper colour (white) I do this after establishing it by leaving it when washing in around it. It is better to have to tint areas than try and scrub back to a lighter tone.
I learned that I definately do Not like 140 lb paper. It does not have near the durability of 300lb for scrubbing back, rubbing around colour or not bubbling with very little water use. I figured because this is small I'd be fine but I prefer 300lb personally and won't bother with 140 again.
I have been washing in areas with warm ochre and some cooler crimson/mauve. I have established the top and will be washing in darks and scrubbing back some mids into it afterwards. I like scrubbing back from darks to create light areas and mids as it appears more 3 dimensional. I'll often lay in darks pretty solid coverage and start removing colour for lights, before I am done or it is completely dry. Thsi gives nice soft transitions and not hard crisp lines between tonal changes where areas meet.
I worked a bit more in her hair with green/blues and purples and carried some more skin tones into the edges. I have the highlights as I want them. The hair is pretty well done.
I started into her arm and hand. I also am making sure that the mic does not blend into her lips and skin so I am defining it a bit more and keeping the tones different.
Her face is pretty well done. I will be defining some of her features a bit more and double checking the balance of the mid tones, colour and such is all.
I am keeping this looser and fresh so I am not working too wet to allow the colours to glaze over each other and not blend together much.
Oh Fookie, I forget to respond to the permanent stain of some of the reds. I find that I have not experienced a problem but I can see how they could be if layed where you don't want them and later tryign to remove alot of the pigment. Alot of practice has probably eliminated that occurance for me.
Thanks all; Joss

11-04-2003, 08:13 PM
I just love the warmth in her face Joss!!!

granulating background colours are effective


11-04-2003, 08:21 PM
My goodness you have made her face sooo expressive. You can see she is singing her heart out..


11-04-2003, 09:11 PM
Yes right on. Its sure looking good.

Got the feel of a soulfull singer there. Like the braid. Neat addition. Skin has that aura of a glow. Very good!! Excellent.


11-05-2003, 01:43 AM
:clap: :clap: :clap: dear jocey you impressed me with your water colors. great control over this tough medium.

looking forward to see more of your w.c

goodluck for the future

Ajay Yashpaul:cat:

11-05-2003, 02:49 AM
an extra-super-bravissimo !

11-05-2003, 02:22 PM
Hello everyone and thanks again. I am glad it is being enjoyed.
Here is todays progress.
I have done some more detailing darks around her eyes, nose edge and mouth. I am using purples. I am letting the colour drop on transparent so that underneath layers build up nicely. I am not really dragging the brush, more touching down paint with it in spots.
I have added some green/cobalt blues to the hair and the braids. I have done a second set of washing colours into her top. Using alot of Ultramarine and Sienna. I am scrubbing back to keep some areas light and highlighted.
I have begun establishing the shapes in the hand. I have made a concious note that her neckline of her top kind of visually gets confusing with her hand so I have to make sure I keep some depth differentiation there.
All for today. Wednesdays are my busy cleaning days and pool playing league night. Kids are loaded with homework usually too.

Alan Cross
11-05-2003, 03:09 PM
Looking good Joss....
Alan :)

11-05-2003, 07:15 PM


11-05-2003, 11:26 PM
Well done and excellent explanation.......

11-07-2003, 12:04 PM
Hi Everyone: Here is the latest progress. I dropped in the last of the darks in her face. These were in and around her eyelids, mouth and nose. I also have deepened the shading near her ear on her face there. I am done with her face I believe. Will double check it at the end.
Her hair I am done. I may scrub back a bit in the braids laying on her shoulder is all.
The background is done as is her top. I want her top to remain undetailed. I am on her hand and that will be done next progress image.
I have to finish this up as I have 5 things waiting for Christmas now. Thsi is always a busy time of year but this year I made sure to keep it less stressful by not accepting as many.
Sorry, these images are showing a little greyed down from my digital camera. The final will be a scan which always turns out better for me, and more accurate. I can't fit the board it is on in where my scanner sits.

11-07-2003, 12:10 PM
Thank you once again.........looking forward to next installment............al

11-07-2003, 03:47 PM
wonderful shading on her face Joss!!

this is looking terrific

the areas between the braids at her shoulder.....are you going to add in some of the other background colours to the blue? looks a bit bright there to me


11-07-2003, 04:11 PM
Hi All: Ok, she is done. I scanned the painting and it is appearing pretty accurate. The top is a bit lighter than in the original but it is pretty close.
Hi Em. Yes, I darkened that area in behind the braids. I agree, it was too light there. Her top is too light on my screen to.
I did go into the face, particularly the nose shapes, again.
She is a little looser than I personally handle my watercolour portraits but I really feel it works here.
Thanks all! Suggestions and comments are most welcome.
One thing I must add is that my main reason for loving watercolour is the nice little accidental shapes and edges one gets after the paint laid down is allowed to just sit and dry.
If the lady whose portrait this is wants it, she is welcome to have it Dana. I can send it to you.

Alan Cross
11-07-2003, 04:14 PM
Great finsh.... a treat to watch!
Alan :)

11-07-2003, 04:18 PM
Alan, thank you!
I see one thing I want to fix already! lol Her eye on our right seems a bit off in the partial pupil placement and that sharp dip up has to go.

Felica Keech-Smith
11-07-2003, 04:18 PM
Gorgeous Joss... simply gorgeous!! SO much soul in this painting!


11-07-2003, 04:19 PM
I love the additions of the blue/purple to her skin!!! really grounds her with the background.

the hand turned out great!!

the area behind the braids blends more now:)

overall a superb portrait and first rate WIP!!!

thank you Joss :)


11-07-2003, 04:42 PM
Excellent. Thank you so much.............


11-07-2003, 04:52 PM
Originally posted by jocelynsart
lol Her eye on our right seems a bit off in the partial pupil placement and that sharp dip up has to go.

Hi Joss

Another wonderfull job on this portrait. Don't sweat it tho. She just has 'lazy eye' is all. Perfectly normal for some. My daughter has a lazy eye so your portrait not alone ;) lol

Really tho Joss you did a great job on this. :clap:

Very nice. I really like how you did the skin.I give youa 5* on this one. As with all your WIP's, another very educational painting.


Dana Design
11-07-2003, 05:09 PM
This is absolutely beautiful, Joss! I've been watching as you've gone along and have been amazed at your deft treatment of what I thought was a difficult painting. You've captured her perfectly! I loved talking to her and, of course, asked to photograph her before snapping away. She did NOT take a bad photo! She asked if she'd be famous. I told her she already was, in addition to being beautiful. A fun-loving lady full of life, she is.

I'd LOVE to be able to give this to her!!! Thank you so much for the offer. And, it will make her so happy. I'll email you privately and give you my address.

Thank you again, beautiful job!

11-07-2003, 06:33 PM
Oh thanks you guys. I really hope she likes it and please thank her for posing!!!! She was a treat to paint, very beautiful skin and alot of special character, and doing something she loves.
I can't tell if she really has a lazy eye. I think I worked so loose that I just did nto pay real great attention to where I was droppign her pupil. I'll double check the reference as it was hard to tell really. if she does have a lazy eye, than I'd rather leave it.
OK, Dana. I'll get it from you when you send it.

11-07-2003, 08:42 PM
Amazing.............thank you so much for this terrific wip..

The lady is just going to be over the moon when she sees her portrait :)


lyn lynch
11-17-2003, 12:18 PM
Beautiful, JOSS! You're so lovely to share your talent, not only w/us, but with the subject. I know first-hand the treat of receiving a Joss portrait!

I don't have any nits w/this work. You are such an artist that you are able to use your technical skills to meet the style of the portrait--this lady should be painted more loosely, so one can 'feel' the soul. I'd like to see you go even a bit more loosely--some splats and splatters--I agree, the incidentals are what make watercolor so exciting.

Please do a WIP on your gorgeous daughter--the image looking out the window--I tried and failed miserably. Your photography skills are as exciting as your watercolors, making it impossible for me to paint, but I'd love to see you do it.

11-17-2003, 06:32 PM
Hi Fookie: Thanks so much! Yes, I know what you mean about looser. I could have spattered some colour around. I guess I just find that I paint how I paint and this is as loose as it gets for me! lol
Sure, Fook. I would be glad to do that. But, I have to do it in Jan. I am busy and dealing with some other stuff that is taking up time.
Hope all is well!
Thansk again everyone for all your generous support and comments.

11-17-2003, 06:58 PM
Joss...Your explanations and descriptions were so clear....I felt like I was tuned right in to your thought process! Thanks for your generosity in sharing this beautiful painting.

11-17-2003, 08:02 PM
So impressive Joss... and after looking at your website, a nice branching out of your talents. Dana Design, dying to know what the model thinks... this is definitely a hall of famer!


Dana Design
11-17-2003, 08:27 PM
Have not received the painting from Joss as yet but I've called the Blues Mama and told her I'd be seeing her very soon. Told her about the painting and wanted to email the finished page to her but she doesn't have a computer. Even laughed when I asked her.

She's been phoning me tho' and can't wait to meet me to pick it up. I'm so excited for her. If you knew her, you'd know why! She's a real honey!


11-19-2003, 05:19 AM
Beautiful and highly educational Joss.

11-19-2003, 11:22 AM
Hi All: Thanks baquitania.
Sorry Dana! I have all kinds of paintings to pick up from my framer and was going to do one big shipping run. I'll send it today for you Express.
Thanks everyone. You are very welcome.

11-19-2003, 03:55 PM
I was working on something and a thought came to my head. I realize that alot of the portrait samples seen of mine, there are no reference photos posted for interest sake. What seems to happen alot is that people assume that because I work from photos, my portraits are probably copies of photos pretty closely. If I did provide the reference material I had to work from, most people would be aware that this is not the case. The Blues Mama demo is a good example of how many of my portraits differ from my ref material. Please be assured that I am bringing this up just to educate anyone who does not know that about me, since I will most likely be doing other demos in the future. I am nto negatively commenting in regards to copying/not copying. Anything I do has some amoutn of "copying" in it.
One good example of a painting that I used huge amounts of ref photos for is the Frog Pond one. I had to draw out all the kids working from many reference. One was not even in the main reference photo. I cannot recall which kid it was now. I also drew alot of the pond by imagination and painted from imagination.
My style causes my work to be on it's own, separate from the reference. Yes, some paintings I purposely want what I caught in the photo to come across. My more "photo" realistic pieces seem to want to be like that on their own and I paint to that degree instinctually with certain subjects I choose. My watercolour portraits seem to be the most different from my reference. My detailed acrylics closer. Sometimes I really truly don't want to lose the great aspects of my reference. Those tend to be more "photo realistic'" if you will.
This is not intended as a discussion starting comment. I just thought this info about myself and the type of artist I am would be good to throw out there to everyone. I love high realism and I do feel the need often to go to that level. I do what I most love always. Alot of my personal work is challenging. I do that on purpose for me. My commissins I don't consider there a need to be a challenge. They are jobs and there is certain expectations from clients. Likeness is the first one.
My main concern in painting for me, whether I later sell it or not, is to be true to how I instinctually want to paint. It differs sometimes but I do have a style that runs through and crosses into each piece and medium I do.
I have been asked about an airbrush demo in the New Year. I may do one in the Spring. We'll see.
Thanks all. Happy Painting!

Dana Design
11-19-2003, 04:39 PM
What you've stated is exactly what I've been thinking of late especially in view of a statement that challenged (in my interpretation) whether realistic art was art. When I see a photo that begs to be painted, I paint it realistically for the simple reason that I love what I've seen and want to reveal myself also within the painting. Every brush stroke reveals who we are.

When I paint en plein aire, I could easily take a digi-photo, take it home and paint it. However, I prefer to paint it as I see it then and there. So, what's the difference? I'm painting the same thing, no? The trees, beach, rocks, light, waves. How will they change from the moment I take the photo to the moment that I paint in the light and especially, the stationary items.

Your last para re realism/non-realism is my take, also. I was told yesterday that my stuff is loosening up. That's nice. It's an evolution no matter which way the evolution takes us. Only those who narrowly observe one type of art as true art are non-evolving.

Wish you'd taken this to a new thread. T'would be interesting to hear from more folks.

11-19-2003, 05:21 PM
Hi Dana: You make great points!
I just wanted to state it here so that people who see my work without the reference know that this Demo is very close to how I approach and complete my portraits. Some end up loose, some more tight. Size effects this, the thrill of what is in my reference effects this, whether I am feeling a certain mood effects this, how long I end up spending, good/bad reference definatley effects look of portrait, etc. If I get a terrible photo ref like a 60 year old outdoor one with all the detail in the eyes darkened out with severe shading and the client really really wants something done, I'll approach it in a more expressionistic or loose style, tryign for an essence. I did have one like that and they were so thrilled. The client gave me pics of present day relatives that had passed down feature similarities. It was a fun, successful portrait in the end.
I think there has been alot of threads on the subject mentioned. Many in the debate forum. I give up responding on them. It is a never ending useless debate. Such a waste of time now.
One thing I will say is that realism seems to sometimes cause non realists and conceptual artists to assume I think I am a better painter. Never would I ever feel that way. That would be a bad feeling to me. Every artists paints how they feel a need to I hope. Not so much here, WC I don't seem to get that, more other places and real life. How little people know about me to take that stance. I really admire all styles and am blown away by very many different artists.
I just wanted people who follow my Demos or view my work to really know more about me as an artist. Most from WC!