Monday, April 11, 2011

Portrait Marathon: Hailey begins

Hailey's portrait is starting off a little differently than usual.  Typically, I start with a blank canvas, transfer my drawing, and then do the underpainting, usually in dark blues, not working on the background 'til I've got the underpainting well underway.

I decided to try a different route with Hailey.  She's a black greyhound, and I want to finish her off with some blues, both in highlights and shadows, with a warmer background.  So, this time I started by covering the canvas with a layer of Naples yellow, then my drawing, and then this huge departure of doing the underpainting in these deep reddish browns.  It's a bit of an experiment, really.  I'm sure it will work out, I'm just not sure what it will look like along the way.

The first image is where I'm getting  a feel for the mix of color I'm using, and establishing the darker shadows.  It's okay, but it's not getting the darks dark enough, so, as the second picture shows, I went back in with burnt umber in the darkest areas.  I'll probably keep layering in, maybe with Payne's gray, or some deep blues to cool off the shadows.  I'm happy with it so far.
This is the  reference image.  You can see there won't be much left of any yellow when I'm done,.  Nor of warm reddish browns, for that matter!

That's where we're at at the end of work for today. I'll be back at it in the morning!

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