PDA

View Full Version : A gorgeous blonde! WIP


Shelley P
01-06-2007, 07:37 AM
Haven't posted anything in ages, so I thought I'd make my first painting of 2007 a WIP. This is my friend's golden puppy (not the kinda blonde you were expecting, huh?). She was holding onto him (just barely) near a big bright window for this photo.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix_reference_photo.jpg

I started the background with a graded colour of dark blue in the upper right corner, fading to a light blue in the lower corner. I did this with a firm sponge roller so the paint could go on wet-on-wet to get a smooth even blend. The mdf (medium density fibre) surface is quite smooth, but needs a light sanding after the first coat of paint (which lifts the fibres slightly). This is my preferred method - to start with a smooth surface and paint thin, with little or no build up of paint as I work. OK, so now I'm ready to add the line drawing and start painting, starting with white highlights on the left. For some reason the background looks grey in these early stages. It's actually a fairly bright blue as you will see at the end. 10" x 10"

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix2.JPG

I'm using a short-haired brush and thinned paint to start. My plan is to lay out the painting lightly and then build up the layers.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix3.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix4.JPG

I'm beginning to move onto more golden colours now.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix5.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix6.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix7.JPG

Can't wait any longer. Gotta get those eyes and nose in there!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix8.JPG

Now he's starting to shape up and come to life.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix9.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix10.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix11.JPG

Nose Details.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix12.JPG

And the eyes. I used soft edges on the pupils to get that 'dewy' look in his eyes.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix13.JPG

The finale. This photo was taken after the varnish was applied. I think it really makes the colours much more vivid.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Jan-2007/50468-500pix1.jpg

Shelley

idylbrush
01-06-2007, 08:02 AM
This is incredible. Very nicely done and a WIP as well.

Bravo!

Shoebox
01-06-2007, 08:57 AM
Spot on, absolutely gorgeous. I love the progression and I don't know if it was the way you took the picture or if that was some super varnish, but the colours really livened up afterwards. He's such an adorable little thing, you captured him beautifully.

purplepansey
01-06-2007, 09:16 AM
What a great WIP and the finish is super!:thumbsup: :clap:

LisaArt
01-06-2007, 10:35 AM
WOW..GREAT wip and fantastic painting result. Really loved how you worked. the first stages almost looked like an xray! Thanks so much for sharing. That is one beautiful puppy and painting :)

kdkbrown
01-06-2007, 10:46 AM
Shelly,

What an adorable puppy! Awe... Shelly your work is exceptional!

Shelley P
01-06-2007, 10:58 AM
Thanks so much and I'm glad you like the WIP. He is a beautiful dog and his name is Shane. I just sent the owner the image too (she didn't know I was painting him). Here's what she just wrote back about him ...

"It is too bad Shane can't appreciate the painting! I think I can see a hint of mischief in that smile of his and true to form he put that into practice two days before Christmas. Decided that a glove would make a tasty snack and when it didn't appear at either end then surgery had to be peformed. Sounded like it was pretty routine for the vet as pets consume all kinds of goodies! However, he made great progress and we were all able to enjoy our Christmas."

Poor little guy (actually he's big now). Glad he's on the mend.

Shelley

Marge Wms
01-06-2007, 11:06 AM
Shelley, That is AMAZING!!!!! Now you are what I call an ARTIST.. Gigi

Shelley P
01-06-2007, 11:24 AM
Spot on, absolutely gorgeous. I love the progression and I don't know if it was the way you took the picture or if that was some super varnish, but the colours really livened up afterwards. He's such an adorable little thing, you captured him beautifully.

Thanks very much!

Cameras are wonderful tools, but they do have limitations. They like to average things out and find a balance. Dark and light, warm and cool and so on. When you take a picture which doesn't have both warm and cool (as in the first images) it doesn't quite know what to do, so it goes kinda grey. Once you introduce warm colours (as in the final images)... ah, now it has a reference for creating the cool tones and the colours are more true.

So here's a tip for photographing your work - if you have a predominently blue image, set it against something warm (red, orange, gold) and your colours will be better! Same goes for the reverse - set a warm painting against a cool backdrop to get the colours more accurate. I wish I'd remembered this, when I was taking the step-by-step images. Sorry. I guess I was too wrapped up in the painting!

As I mentioned before, the varnish really helps too. Because I work so thin, the paint is somewhat chalky looking until the varnish goes on. Then it really comes alive, especially the black. Only trouble is that it gets trickly to photograph then, because it is a bit shiny so you have to watch out for glare.

Shelley

Ex_Fisherman
01-06-2007, 11:37 AM
This is so amazing. Very nice work on the fur.:clap: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

dreamz
01-06-2007, 01:02 PM
absolutely stunning!.

idcrisis55
01-06-2007, 01:11 PM
Beautiful, beautiful WIP and finish! Thanks too for the tip on photographing, that was a real bonus. :) Hope you post lots more WIP's and paintings :D

chammi kaiser
01-06-2007, 04:46 PM
I am totally besotted with this little creature. A wonderful painting that has touched my heart. Specially like the way you have painted the eye and the fur. Wonderful. CHAMMI

Jabberwockie
01-06-2007, 05:27 PM
WOW! :clap: Excellent work. I am in awe that this is acrylic. Your friend must be so happy.

Roger Evans
01-06-2007, 05:54 PM
Wonderful. Really beautiful work and perfect technique. He looks all soft and cuddly. :)

I have a technical question about your post. I count something like 14 photos in your post but I was under the impression that we can only post, like, 5 at a time or something. Also, your photos seem much larger than anything I've been able to post in the past. What's your secret?

Roger

Café LoLa
01-06-2007, 06:06 PM
I have a technical question about your post. I count something like 14 photos in your post but I was under the impression that we can only post, like, 5 at a time or something. Also, your photos seem much larger than anything I've been able to post in the past. What's your secret?

If you have an independent web site where you can store your images, you can link to the images themselves without uploading it onto wetcanvas'es server. And therefore it can be as big as she wants it to be.

eta - I see now. I'm not sure now. One thing I can think of is that she might have posted her images into the image library?

eta again Shelley explains it better.

Shelley P
01-06-2007, 06:11 PM
Wonderful. Really beautiful work and perfect technique. He looks all soft and cuddly. :)

I have a technical question about your post. I count something like 14 photos in your post but I was under the impression that we can only post, like, 5 at a time or something. Also, your photos seem much larger than anything I've been able to post in the past. What's your secret?

Roger
Thanks very much for all the kind words!

Roger - no secret really. I just make sure that I resize all the images to 500pixels on the longest side and reduce the quality to 72 dpi. This makes the file sizes smaller and faster loading, as well as staying within the limits of WC. I'm not 100% sure if this is how I'm able to upload as many as 15 images, but I suspect it's why. Either that, or they just really like me!!:D I believe there's a total file limit on how much can be uploaded per post. These images may seem larger too, because they are square, meaning they are as tall as they are wide.

Shelley

rmc
01-06-2007, 06:39 PM
Shelley - I have been stunned by your watercolours - especially the swan and the cherry bowl and now by this - you have amazing talent!!!!
When you say you use a short hair brush for the painting the fur - is this a worn down brush?

NDee
01-06-2007, 07:47 PM
Fantastic job. Really nice work!

Lady Carol
01-06-2007, 07:54 PM
I am just totally gob-smacked watching this fellow pop off the page. Your reference made me smile but then your procedure made my jaw hit the floor... like this
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/29-Aug-2006/33616-11613-jawdrop.gif
Well done.

Leslie Pz
01-06-2007, 08:00 PM
Terrific! Can't believe as the thread progresses! You really did a great job with this piece.

AtrediesNT
01-06-2007, 08:25 PM
I have to add my amazment at this bit of work.
I have added it to my favourites...i can learn so much from it.
it's Beautiful!!

Lulu
01-06-2007, 08:26 PM
this is totally amazing! Do you use medium at all Shelley?
This looks more like cp than acrylic, am in awe!

tigertiger
01-06-2007, 11:17 PM
WOW! Gorgeous indeed! I've been spending most of my time lurking around here, and I have to tell you... this is great stuff! Thanks for the WIP and details! The pics show me much detail about your process. Can't wait to get back to the studio!
:thumbsup:

Patvk8
01-07-2007, 02:49 AM
Shelley, :clap: this is just beautifuly done :clap:
Thanks for sharing and doing it as a wip. I was holding my breath watching it progress. Gorgeous blonde indeed!
Pat

lightfast
01-07-2007, 03:31 AM
thanks, a great painting and a great lesson. interesting how the grey seemed to turn into blue at once when the orange was added.

laudesan
01-07-2007, 05:13 AM
Shelley I am speechless!!!!!!!!!!!


:clap: :clap: :clap:

Shelley P
01-07-2007, 05:21 AM
Shelley - I have been stunned by your watercolours - especially the swan and the cherry bowl and now by this - you have amazing talent!!!!
When you say you use a short hair brush for the painting the fur - is this a worn down brush?

Ruth - thanks very much! I sometimes just use a worn down brush, but my absolute favorite is my set of 'crescent' brushes (Loew Cornell). I really like them because they are a mixture of stiffer synthetic hair and soft natural hair. The combination means that you can control the direction of the strokes, but with a very soft look. They are also flat with rounded ends. They are actually designed for drybrushing techniques and wouldn't be good for anyone who's heavy-handed, but I work lightly and enjoy them very much - wet or dry. I think they make the best fur.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-Jan-2007/50468-crescent_brushes.jpg

Lulu - I rarely use mediums and not at all this time, just water. I do like to keep my paints a creamy consistency as I work though, so I use a wet-palette.

lightfast - yes, you are right. It is interesting to see the blue become progressively brighter as more warm tones are applied, yet the blue background was untouched throughout. Trick of the camera!

Also -thanks for taking time to look and comment Nancy, Carol, Leslie, AtrediesNT, tigertiger and Pat.

Hey JJ - sorry, you snuck in while I was typing! Thanks.

Shelley

jocelynsart
01-07-2007, 09:16 AM
I knew it! I said to myself, "watch, it'll be a dog!" lol
What a lovely lit reference.
Very nice work!
Jocelyn

Shelley P
01-07-2007, 09:56 AM
Hi Jocelyn - yep, he's a real 'looker' ... just had to paint him!
Thanks for the compliment.

Shelley

C_Line
01-07-2007, 10:58 PM
This is exquisite - how do you get the whiskers so sharp & thin? Thanks for the tip on photographing paintings.

debsn2paintn
01-08-2007, 12:11 AM
Amazing!

dvallere
01-08-2007, 11:22 AM
I too am curious about the whiskers! As a beginner I am still trying to work out which brushes will work for me. One of the things I'm having great difficulty with is distinct fine lines with sharp edges and no blobbing from the brush. Usually I thin down my paints and then use a dip pen.

Please share your secret for this beautiful painting.

Donna

Shelley P
01-08-2007, 02:11 PM
Thanks for your interest. I thought it might be easier to show than explain, so here are a couple of pictures of what I do to get the fine lines. I should mention that the paint is a fairly 'inky' consistency.

1.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Jan-2007/50468-brush1.JPG 2.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Jan-2007/50468-brush2.JPG
3.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Jan-2007/50468-brush3.JPG 4.http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Jan-2007/50468-brush4.JPG

I deliberately showed my finger in the last photo, so you could get a sense of scale. Hope I've explained it well enough.
Also, here's the Crescent brush that I use to make the fur.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/08-Jan-2007/50468-brush5.JPG

Shelley

TxAggieDarlin
01-09-2007, 09:06 AM
WOW, that was fun to watch..............thanks....Fantastic job

Shelley P
01-10-2007, 11:16 AM
Thanks very much TxAggieDarlin. Glad you enjoyed it.

Shelley

Charlie's Mum
01-10-2007, 12:04 PM
Fantastic painting Shelley - and thank you so much for all the information ........ I'm about to rate this thread and would be pleased if others would too.
Apart from the excellent work, it's so good with the explanations and Newbies particularly will find this useful.

Many thanks for sharing this Shelley :D

amaze_1101
01-10-2007, 01:31 PM
My gosh Shelley, you are an absolute master. I have just sat here for what seems like ever, studying your progress and technique and I'm floored by your talent. God's hand must have slipped when he was sprinkling his golden talent dust over your head. You have way too much! :smug:

Thanks for sharing some secrets with us.:thumbsup:

karma kat
01-10-2007, 01:45 PM
Wow! This is really great, and I especially appreciate you showing close ups of the nose and eyes. I've been studying the colors and brush strokes that you used. I've only painted one dog before, and it didn't turn out nearly as good as yours did.
Great job!!!:clap:

Shelley P
01-10-2007, 09:15 PM
Elaine, Maureen & Kat - Well, thank you so much. Oh my goodness, you certainly know how to build a person's ego! I enjoyed painting this and I'm glad to share my not-so-secret secrets! If it helps someone else, then that makes me happy too! I've had many a 'lightbulb' moment viewing other WIP's here, so it's nice to be able to reciprocate for a change. Thanks for the nice remarks!

Shelley

Finzy
01-11-2007, 06:44 AM
Absolutely fantastic, what a great demo, more please! Cheers Finzy

MarciaJane
01-11-2007, 07:24 AM
Wow.. thanks for sharing this. It is absolutely gorgeous !!

I also like the way you have managed to get the succession of WIP photos ... it's a much better way of viewing. I too would be interested to know how you acheived this.

oooops.. I think you already answered my question ! lol ! Thanks again for showing this WIP.

NodakerDeb
01-11-2007, 10:13 AM
Shelly, jaw-dropping, gorgeous painting. Fantastic demo, and wonderful technique. I'm giving you 5 stars :)

Deb

objectivistartist
01-11-2007, 11:17 AM
Excellent! Excellent! Excellent! A true WOWSER!! :thumbsup:

Lucy-Foote
01-11-2007, 04:51 PM
Absolutley a beautiful painting of a beautiful blond. The details are so perfect. Love this.:thumbsup:

Lucy

stoney
01-12-2007, 12:01 AM
Simply mind blowing. :cool:

Shelley P
01-12-2007, 10:43 AM
My goodness, thanks so much. It's a pleasure to do a wip when it's so appreciated. As for the next one, hmmm, I'll have to work on that. In the meantime, I have a couple of portrait tutorials (http://shelleyprior.homestead.com/studiodiary.html) on my website if you are interested.

Shelley

stoney
01-12-2007, 11:05 AM
My goodness, thanks so much. It's a pleasure to do a wip when it's so appreciated. As for the next one, hmmm, I'll have to work on that. In the meantime, I have a couple of portrait tutorials (http://shelleyprior.homestead.com/studiodiary.html) on my website if you are interested.

Shelley

Bookmarked and I took a quick glance. Wow. I'll peruse it further when I'm alert.

olliewood0702
01-12-2007, 03:06 PM
Oh WOW, Shelly....what a GORGEOUs blonde!!:clap: :thumbsup:
THanks for the WIP AND tips!!:clap:

Nitsa
01-12-2007, 10:48 PM
Fantastic work, interesting thread...Thanks for sharing Shelley, I have rated the thread and given you my mentor vote for today! :)

C_Line
01-13-2007, 03:06 PM
Thanks Shelley for taking the time to include the pictures/brushes/instructions on the fine lines and fur & paint consistency. Congratulations on an exquisite painting.