acrylic on panel, 4" x 4"
It has been far too long since I was able to sit down and paint. But today I did just that! (I think the last time I painted was back in June when they were still in school. The big kids started camp today, and the little one actually took a nap so I had a nice quiet, calm house...)
I came across this snapshot when I was looking through some old photos. I have painted it before, on a much bigger scale, in oils, about 15 years ago. It is of my husband back when we lived in Boston, pre-kids. I've always liked the light in this one and thought it would be strong as a small study.
I wanted to try out a new color palette, the Zorn Palette, of Cadmium Red Light, Yellow Ochre, Ivory Black and Titanium White. And I was using a Cadmium Red Medium ground so there's that in there as well. I like the glow of the Cad Red(s) against the neutral grays, but flesh tones can get too brown. Not sure how to fix that but I will have to play around with it and see.
Working with the photo upside down, and under tracing paper (to obscure the details) I tried to block in the major shapes of light and dark first.
As I work, I try to take a few progress shots in black and white to check the overall values.
Once I am sure I have the values and larger shapes right, I flip it over, and then take off the tracing paper to work on the smaller, more subtle shapes and color/value changes.
I'm not happy with the flatness of the background so maybe I'll go back into it... As long as there are parts of a painting that I like, I feel I have learned something. Just happy to have been able to send the afternoon painting!