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  #31   Report Bad Post  
Old 05-16-2009, 02:21 PM
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Charlie's Mum Charlie's Mum is offline
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Jocelyn - I'll be back later but just wanted to say you really only can give as much as you are able!
Please don't feel pressured because we want to 'join in' - we'll try to keep each other right according to your instructions, when you're unable to be here!
In any case, many of these classes seem to build a life and energy of their own and the momentum keeps them going
We're delighted that you're able to do as much as you have already! Thank you!

I'll be back later - perhaps tomorrow to digest all this latest = phew!!!!
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Old 05-16-2009, 02:36 PM
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jocelynsart jocelynsart is offline
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Thanks Maureen.
Yes, true, this'll take on a life of it's own and that's good too. It may be something that a person may also want to put away for later. If one wants to follow along and work up a portrait of their own, that's good :-) Everyone is at different levels too.

Note: I found the original image file on my old CDs that I transferred all my imaegs 2 a couple years ago. So, I have replaced the original ref with a better quality file, way back at the beginning of this thread.
Jocelyn
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Old 05-16-2009, 07:03 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

awesome. Much appreciated
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Old 05-16-2009, 07:39 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Earlier today, I continued in the face. I worked mid tone, quite neutral small areas in the nose, around the eye on right and in those small planes within planes there. I also deepened that shadows on the side on our left. All with very light thinnly rubbed in pigment. The blend looks even softer in person than the screen image here and colours are slightly more muted than on the screen too.

It was time to get into the background too. This will help keep the values in the face correct.

Don't be afraid to let those big background strokes meld with hair edges. The eye will not see the hair edges as distinct when looking at the focal point, her face. So, I try always to paint the hair like that; more fleeting and indistinct or "tightly" rendered. I will choose some choice detail in parts of the hair, usually near to the face, as well as some whispy strands where it is loose around the head.

I will try to elaborate better on this stage, later.


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Old 05-17-2009, 08:23 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Great information and pictures Jocelyn! I am anxious to give a portrait a try using your excellent advice. I love the spontaneity of your style from drawing to painting and the explanations on the geometrical shapes (using as a map). Your demo painting is coming along beautifully! I'm always excited when I see another installment. I'm also looking forward to seeing the video if you get a chance to do that. I'm especially interested in seeing the dry-brushing method you described.

Thanks again for doing this, even though your work schedule changed. I think too that this will be a thread that is visited many times after it's 2-week run and be of great help to acrylic painters of all levels attempting portrait work.

Elizabeth
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Old 05-17-2009, 08:26 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Gayle - what a wonderful rendition of Jocelyn's reference! I was noticing especially the way you've rendered her skin tones perfectly! I'm looking forward to seeing the canvas version as well. Your portraits are always so well done!

Elizabeth
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Old 05-17-2009, 10:53 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Acrylic use for portraits is challenging but it's very satisfying to manage to do. I hope this helps a bit with anyone who may be struggling and perhaps finds this method works for them, or is already kind of going in that direction.
There are other ways of working with acrylic. On a more hard, less textured and less porous surface, like primed hard board, I find thin washes are a very useful way of building up form. Similar to how wc is used. I do still use an underpainting for that surface, but more leaning towards mid skin tones as the basis for the monochrome stage, since the glazing technique is much for transparent.
One can also drop down opaque thicker strokes and shapes, in the same manner an alla prima painting would be approached, with acrylic on canvas or on hard board. It's all a matter of what is most comfortable to the artist. You just kind of have to figure out which direction you naturally are leaning, and develop from there.

Note: I want to update on what will possibly be occurring here in the next week and a half. An unexpected possible circumstance has come up and it may impede my ability to do anything on this till well after next week.
My son's rugby team at school, is being asked to billet students from England, so they can play against teams here. We may have to put up 2 kids starting next Sunday night. I have very little time to perpare for this so will need most of this week's free time to do so. Therefore, I may have to put this aside till after next Wednesday. I'll know more for sure by end of this week.


Thanks; Jocelyn
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Old 05-17-2009, 02:26 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

We will be waiting when you get back.
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Old 05-17-2009, 03:05 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

I have managed to get a Lot done today so I can do some progress tomorrow on this painting and upload a post.
Jocelyn
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Old 05-18-2009, 07:24 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Thanks Jocelyn for all you're doing here - it's great. I love your work and to see it develop with all the great explanations of each stage is wonderful.

Alison
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Old 05-18-2009, 08:54 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Yep, good stuff Jocelyn! Much appreciated, too.
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Old 05-18-2009, 01:25 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Thank you. I am glad it is of some use :-)

Today, I should make some progress on this so will have a couple stages to go over here.

This morning, to begin on this, I wanted to bring the hair edges back up again, out from the background. Later, if they become too crisp and flat like, sitting to much "on" the background, I again will "moosh" their edges by dragging some background tone back over them, softening some back out of too sharp edged focus.

Once, long ago, someone told me, I think it was at the hairdresser's I used to be a shampoo girl at in my mid teens, that "all hair has red in it" So, for some reason, this seemed valid and I've always had that in my head. I always tend to begin hair with a warm "reddish" tone, no matter the colour it is. It creates a very alive base for hair.
For the darkest darks, I am using a mix of blue, green, crimson and a touch of raw sienna where it needs to be lighter. I use lots of mauves and purple browns for the more lit hair and a very deep blue/green purple "black" for the darkest darks. I don't mind if some of the individual colours like the green or crimson, come through (if my mix is not fully mixed at all times) as dark areas have their variances too and are never fully solid "black". In order for them to have dimension visually, the very darkest darks as well as the lightest lights, need to have some indication of subtle value variances.

Some of the shadowing under her eye was too solid. The way I break up too solid areas or too defined lines and edges, is by very lightly rubbing in a slightly lighter pigment, cutting up into and through the area. I did this in the eye area on our left. First, I rubbed in darks to build the shadow then I take the slightly lighter, warmer tones and rub back into that dark area, to bring back contours where they become lighter ie: the fat part below the brow and the cheek and temple area. I find that going with slightly lighter over darker works best. Doing a bit more than needed with a pigment lay in, then cutting gently back into it, almost "sculpting out" your lighter area, really allows for a soft visual gradation in your blends.

Note: Once my daughter is back, after today, I will get her to do a little video showing the drybrushing and my laying in of pigment over pigment. It'll make it easier than words can describe, to actually see it

Much of the laying in here, my paint is so very dryish in consistency, that the pigment amount that goes on is very light, therefore only lightening or darkening the area I am drybrushing it on in a very small gradation of value.

Sorry, I have this image a little too warm than it is IRL.

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Old 05-18-2009, 01:39 PM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

In the next stage, I began really looking at the smaller areas within areas, like the bridge of her nose, and top of the ball of her nose, and the little tiny planes under the nose and above the mouth, as well as the light side areas around her eye. Here now I am beginning to really define these much smaller areas, which give her her specific characteristics and therefore, work towards really keeping her likeness there. I work back and forth, adjusting my mixes very subtley, to keep it either cool or warm, as I go and as I see I need. My dry brush strokes in these types of small planes within planes, are so very light and delicate, due to the size of area I am working on. I keep my paint for this, very sticky dry so only thin soft layers are going on, not opaque solid strokes, that cover completely what is below them.

For subtle small shadows or highlights in eyes, I use a slightly thicker dab of pigment, off the very corner tip of my chisel, and dab it on so very gently so as not to make it too large. If it becomes to intrusive or solid, I dab it down once with my finger, and this softens as well as removes some excesss paint.

Next stage, I will begin building the neck and back into the hair. The neck area covered by hair, will need the same kind of treatment that the background/hair areas need. They'll need some back and forth, to avoid the paste on cut out look.

I want to note that these are Liquitex Heavy Body acrylics and some Golden acrylics I am using. Even though they are not the Open acrylics, I find that sufficient time is there to get some "smooshi blending ability" whcih is similar to using oil paints. Using them almost from the tube and adding the odd dab of belnding gel, gives them this consistency and ability. This is what happens in those areas such as where the hair hits the shoulder, or meets the background, etc. That way, you can get soft edges easily, with acrylics. The only difference is that it's a one or two chance thing, not an ability that allows one to keep working that method over and over in an area, like with oils.



Again, I apologize that these are a bit too pinky on the screen probably, as well as the highlights being a bit lost here compared to IRL. I find that the screen intensifies my pigments so much more than they are IRL on the portrait.



This is what my palette looks like, as I mix and apply, during most of this stage. If I need to go completely away from my mix, like needing a light again when my mix is so dark, I begin a new area. What I tend to always do is graduate my mix as I go, in a very close gradation from light to dark or visa versa. So, my mix is always kind of morphing with my needs, as I paint. If that makes sense. Sometimes, I'll use only a portion of my mix, to adjust and use, if I know or atleast think I may need the original mix again right away.

In this stage, it is harder to describe what I am doing because a lot of the work in the face is now very small, subtle and specific.
One thing I will say is that the more you break up planes within planes, the more the portrait would become highly tight and realistic. My work tends to have only a medium breaking down of smaller planes within planes, therefore maintains a somewhat painterly look while being representational. I go far enough to really get the likeness and portray the features I enjoy about the person in the first place, but my portraits do still show shapes and strokes of my brushwork.
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Old 05-19-2009, 09:33 AM
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Will be back at this a couple days after next weekend. Hopefully, able to add the video too.
Have a good week!
Jocelyn
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Old 05-19-2009, 03:33 PM
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Chrisp47 Chrisp47 is offline
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Re: MTM Classroom - Portraits in Acrylic

Amazing Jocelyn, looks a little daunting for me, but if I don't try I'll never find out.
Gotta get painting, it's depressing outside, it snowed yesterday, of course that always happens the May long weekend.
Chris

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