Monday, 24 February 2014

Sofia Helin

Sofia Helin is the star of the Nordic drama/thriller `The Bridge'. The two series have been a dramatic hit on TV's BBC4 and a third one is planned. It is one of the several Foreign subtitled dramas shown in recent years on BBC4, including Wallander, Inspector Montalbano, The Killing, Borgen and two rather dark French series Spiral and Branque. Not sure if I've got the last named correct. I've enjoyed them all and they make a welcome change from the way special effects, especially in films,  have overwhelmed dialogue and storylines in many English speaking productions. 

The amazing thing is that she looks completely different from her damaged character Saga Noren; which illustrates what a brilliant actress she is. I was inspired to do this from  a cover photo on the Guardian Weekend magazine for which thanks.

Sofia Helin - 16" x 12" Waterford High White 140lb (300gsm) not

I first made a careful drawing - as careful as I'm able - using my favourite Pentel mechanical pencil 07 2B. I began by painting the eyes followed by the nose and mouth. Colours were Cadmium Red Pale (Rowney), Cadmium Yellow Pale (Lukas I think) with a very little Cerulean. Her complexion is extremely light and the photograph doesn't lend itself to pronounced shading. Another problem was the hair, which is almost white-blond in places. I was taken by the overall colours, particularly the red cap but her eyes - to me - are the key feature so I concentrated on those. 

Colours for the hair were Raw Sienna, Raw Umber and Quinacridone Gold (Daniel Smith PO49). There is a little Burnt Umber in places. The hat is Quinacridone Coral (Daniel Smith PR209) a fabulous colour.The blue in her top is Ultramarine.

Brushes were all Isabey, travel brushes 4 & 6 and Kolinsky sables 4, 6, and 8.

I'm quite pleased with this one. The likeness, while not perfect, is pretty close.


ann @ studiohyde said...

Very good portrait here Peter. I've never heard of this actress, will have to look in on BBC4.

Peter Ward said...

Thanks Ann. Depends what your tastes are but we both think most of these series are very good. The wife didn't like the French ones as they were pretty violent and quite dark.