View Full Version : Andrew & Benjamin

09-05-2008, 01:50 PM


Title: Andrew & Benjamin
Year Created:
Medium: Oil
Surface: Canvas
Dimension: 20 x 24
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

This is a portrait of my cousin's children, Andrew and Benjamin, sitting on my grandfather's (their great Grandfather's) tractor. It is late afte<br>oon, the light is coming in through the garage door, and Andrew is holding baby Benjamin. <br><br>My goal was to paint a realistic portrait in a semi-loose style.

I would be interested in hearing all feedback, and specifically feedback regarding style, color and brushwork. Are there things I can do to make this better?

09-05-2008, 04:04 PM
I really like this a lot. Excellent color and expressions. It's kind of a Rockwell style, but looser (that's meant to be a compliment btw)

Hope to see more from you.

09-05-2008, 04:59 PM
This is not only a beautiful double portrait, filled with light movement and personality, but a beautiful painting in and of itself. As a fan of the impressionists myself, and a mother of five boys, I’m especially drawn to story you’re telling. You have a good composition, and a strong earth tone color harmony. The blue reflective light REALLY helps give us a feeling of the outdoors even though technically they are inside, but it is effective and essential to the story here. As far as portraits go, I’m a tough critique (on myself as well), and you’ll be happy to hear that there is very little you have left me to pick on. I found only two issues, both having to do with your edges. First, because of the strong backlighting, your light planes need a bit of a glow to them, especially the high lighting on the seat, the kiddo’s hair and faces, the older boy’s white stripe on his shirt, and the babies white shirt. In creating this “glow” you will also soften the edges, bringing more focus to the faces. The second is tractor and the garage door. Again, they are competing with the children. I would leave the seat, as it draws the eyes to the children, but the tractor needs a bit of graying (I can’t believe I just wrote that—I LOVE high saturation) and the edges softened, especially the bright yellow/orange controls in the foreground. The garage door recedes nicely in color, but the bottom edge is too hard and high in value. While this painting is still very accomplished without these changes, I think applying them will make this an award winner. Your experience in commercial art and design industry, has definitely given you a leg up as a painter. NICE!

Dana Design
09-06-2008, 10:30 AM
The children are lovely and nicely done but there's too much tractor detail that steals the attention. I'd tone the golds and greens way down and just give some hints as to gear shift, steering wheel and steering column. The gold thing on the column is confusing and really isn't necessary.

09-06-2008, 02:24 PM
Agree with Dana and Tali that the tractor bits are stealing from the beautiful depiction of the kids. I think this is the sin of "following the reference too closely". And, too often, Mea Culpa, Mea Maxima Culpa. So...we're artists; change the scene. You could deemphasize the over bright tractor bits but I'd just leave them out.

09-06-2008, 05:38 PM
Beautiful job on the children!