RL Portrait Progress #3

Finally into the fun colorful part. My backgrounds are important to me, showing me the lighting origin and allowing me to see if I have my image drawn correctly by outline. My technique is applying light washes in layers. Usually looking for the darkest areas to lay in bright colors. Laying the shadows in shows me the shapes.

portrait Lil’ Ben redo progress #1

Here we go again, third time is a charm they say. 🙂

Here is the sketch laid out on the watercolor paper with “mastik” or “resist” applied to reserve the white areas.

portrait little Ben redo  With the white areas protected I have an easier time treating the background with a free wash without worry.




Little Ben’s Portrait Finished

baby portrait
I love this little guys smile and that wonderful reflection in the mirror behind him.

BTW I use and abuse all family members and friends, as I grab photographs to work from whenever I see something cool so I can practice painting of the human form.  The photograph I am using for this one was taken by Sandi Shirley, my co-grandma. Thank you!

My goal was to get Ben’s likeness and I finally feel that I have done it. It does look just like him. Yay! Such a cute baby with two of the deepest dimples you have ever seen. Dimples are not easy, go ahead and try em. It was tricky to get the lighting right, but I feel like the reflection is working correctly too. At least I hope so. What do you think? Be gentle… I’m an emotional artist ya know. 🙂

Little Ben prog 1 & 2

Focusing on the center point of my inspiration, which is Ben’s smile and the wonderful reflection in the mirror behind him changes the portrait a great deal. Here is the layout sketched in and background wash beginning. The second view is after some more washes. I am taking this slow and gradual as I try to maintain a better realistic representation.

Ben progress shots 01 & 02

Next I will work on the details.


baby watercolor portrait progress

Cute Little boy smiling in front of a mirror showing the back of his head.
I love the way his face is so bright and the reflection in the mirror behind him is more a warmly suggested view.

Still working on improving my portraiture craft specifically in the realm of “realism” . This is a progressive shot of Little Ben’s portrait, where I am currently adding darks mediums and lights to get the values right so I can start on the details to finish. One step at a time 🙂

watercolor portraits with realism

It is an honor to attend a class with Stan Miller at Spokane Art Supply on Wednesdays 1-4pm for Intermediate/Advanced Watercolor instructions.  It is so inspiring to work with such a talented master artist. I am working on improving my craft specifically in the “realism” realm. Currently working with two grandkid images,  this is Ben on the right. I am following Stan’s suggestion to focus up close and get the realism down pat… instead of doing the whole body layout.Ben and cousin reflection