Monday, 25 April 2011

Latest Portrait

As a change from my Amerindians I was taken by an illustration in one of the weekend colour magazines.

This is the young lady concerned. Her name is Nadja Benaissa of the German pop group  No Angels. Judging by the story which the photograph illustrated she certainly isn't.I'll say no more about the content of the article.

I first did the drawing which was basically accurate but not overdrawn. Then the features followed by the hair.

 The completed painting. Fontenay 16" x 12" Not.

Slightly modified final version. Can you spot the differences?

I can see one or two mistakes in my painting but generally the likeness has been captured reasonably well. I rather like the earlier  stage before I put in the darker shading on the left hand side of the face. Face colours were my usual Cadmium Red Light, Cadmium Yellow Light and Cerulean to darken. The hair initially was a mix of Indigo (Maimeri PB27 and Pbk7) and Cyan Blue green shade (Maimeri PB15-3). A day later I added French Ultramarine using one of the (correction) tecniques Charles Reid taught me, which was to dampen the hair with clear water first and then paint into it with the Ultramarine. The dark of the dress is a mix of Burnt Sienna and French Ultramarine. It isn't great but certainly much better than I would have done a year or so ago.

I have actually completed another portrait of the Apache cowboy who is the subject of the April challenge with Mick Carney  I may do a second one because one aspect of the painting - which I won't go into at this stage - causes me concern.


hap said...

A very interesting and challenging choice Peter. The pose in the photograph looks a bit odd, but the over the shoulder look gives the painting a picasso like flavor that seems to make the face off balanced for my eye. a VERY difficult pose to capture with your loose style I should think! Very dark hair is also a great challenge to get "right". I think you did a good job of giving it some "definition". All in all I'd say you did quite well with a very tough composition!

Peter Ward said...

Thanks Hap. Actually the hair was the main problem. I didn't feel the face was over difficult or the pose particularly. I was attracted to her by the facial expression. Trying to depict the hair in a way which didn't look like a black mass was the main problem. There are some mistakes in the proportions of the hair to the face on the left hand side.

Mick Carney said...

Another cracking portrait, Peter. Like the scratching in the hair. I think your finished version has just changed the chin line slightly and it's not as accurate as your first drawing, but that's a minor point.

Peter Ward said...

Thanks Mick. Actually I didn't touch the chin in the final version so why it looks different I'm not sure. I'm not entirely happy with this one. I keep looking at it and think I should have done better.