29 April 2009


watercolor on Arches HP 300gsm, 14" x 10".

more than half my session with trinity was spent on portrait photographs with a variety of tops for color contrast. trinity mentioned she felt tense in front of a camera, but this image is from the second half of the session when she had relaxed into the work.

this hot pressed paper is well sized, making it easy to lift paints, but also producing a whitish, pearlescent effect in colors laid on as several juicy layers. trinity's hair is jet black, but for color interest i first blocked the hair in with sepia, then built up the blacks with overlapping sections of perylene maroon, phthalo green, pyrrole orange, phthalo blue, dioxazine violet and nickel dioxine yellow. once these had completely dried, i cut into the glazes with a moist, 1/8" acrylic flat brush, scribing the plaits and highlights and revealing different color mixtures in the process.

the skin tone is diluted chromium titanate yellow, with darks in cadmium orange, cadmium red and benzimidazolone brown, all muted with tints of phthalo green. the background is two layers of quinacridone violet. she has striking, hazel yellow eyes set in a black iris border; i painted these with green gold, then glazed with perylene maroon to get the right hue.

trinity enjoyed the portrait images enough to post a dozen to her facebook page. i'm glad she likes them.

TECH NOTE: i've recently discovered that i have to choose the option "discard the embedded profile (don't color manage)" in photoshop before posting images to the web. for some reason, files that retain the camera image space lose color balance when compressed on blogspot.

1 comment:

Lisa Faulkner Wright said...

Very delicate modeling of the shadow side of Trinity's face. Your use of a rainbow of colors to depict her black hair is lovely. You've captured a bit of her personality here. Very nice.