Above, for the most part, I focus on tones and contrast and expression in my portraits. I use very little color. That surprises me but as I look at any group of my portraits paintings that is what I see and I’m fine with that.
Below: On rare occasions, color takes over.
It’s more so the color of my imagination rather than from the reference. This photo image by Daphne and Art Carlyle. It’s fun to paint little figurative images like this, as opposed to “serious” portraits because I feel comfortable in focusing less on accuracy and details. I enjoyed creating the color and loose textured brush strokes.
Yesterday and today it snowed – just enough to be pretty! Very little is left. The scene below was taken about midnight from my balcony.
I wanted to do something different – something a bit impressionist looking. I did an easy sketch from imagination (no face) to create a practice painting. First the background was painted using short parallel brush strokes and transparent paint. My palette contained a rainbow of analogous colors which I could quickly dip into to paint it. The brushstrokes were rather random/abstract having no predetermined elements to paint. Ultimately I used lots of short curved parallel strokes. The background became rather interesting. I blocked in the figure with color in a simple fashion. The next day, that first paint layer was “tacky,” as opposed to wet or dry, and the painting was ready for a second layer of paint. I always love painting draped shawls and scarfs a well as designing jewelry to adorn my figures. I created a hairstyle somewhat similar to a friends, but not really! When it came to the background, I decided not to add a second layer because I knew this would substantially change the colors, and tone and I liked the colors and tones as they were. I convinced myself it finished and fine and hung it on the wall to observe and critique – I liked it. After a few hours of admiration, I said to my self – “go forth and experiment- no one is awaiting this painting – lets change it!” I am proud of my willingness to do that. I can remember when that would not be a consideration. Below: I wanted to create an alternate to the hard edged version.
I did this by feathering edges, blending strokes and by creating little soft abstract brushstrokes by allowing the brush to “dance”. When comparing the two, side by side, I prefer the first. It’s dramatic and the colors are luscious and royal. When not comparing, however, I enjoy the soft strokes and feathered texture of the painting which actually remains. Since I had no reference for this painting, deciding my color palette was a bit of a challenge, The shawl was changed, the scarf was eliminated.
It’s a new painting and thus far, it remains. I think you prefer the initial version – not sure. I think I prefer it. It reminds me of tapestry. This was an important exercise – at least instructive. The hardest part of posting these images is my inability to get the colors and tone and texture to actually look like the painting. I try. Thank you for sharing my journey – I so love it.
I must say that I’m so sad about the invasion of Ukraine.
I thought this lovely lady and my dragon bench would look splendid together. I featured a photo this bench in my recent “home gallery” post but I’ve never painted it before. I would often look at this bench and would think “not today” even if had been captured in a reference image. It was actually less stressful to paint than I imagined. Her portrait, on the other hand, posed the usual portrait painting challenge. In every painting there is something to be learned and I enjoy each new experience. Hope you enjoy. Winifred
She wore black jeans and a black tee shirt when I photographed her. I allowed her to pose herself and I’m glad I did. The aspect of the pose I find most endearing is her arms. I never would have positioned them as such but they’re perfect – the elongated arms flowing into the interestingly interlaced tapered fingers. I also didn’t envision this painting style – for sure. There is a class I wanted to take. It will be taught by Valerie Collymore, quite an amazing impressionist painter. Her class is entitled “Renoir Like” – but sadly for me – it’s full. I decided I would paint my own “Renoir Like” portrait but my imagination took over the process and this painting took on a life of it’s own, determining color, texture and abstractions as it evolved. I’m glad things happened as they did. After all, I will always be better at painting “Winifred Like”. Hope you enjoy. Winifred
Often, if not all the time you’ll see groups of people gathered in the many narrow paths and streets of Venice, Italy. At night, this is an even more striking as they are lit by golden window light. Add rain and you add shimmer to the darkened silhouettes. Umbrellas don’t play a dominant role in this painting but they are present. Hope you enjoy. Winifred
It was a blue sky day with intense sun and she shielded herself from it as she left my home gallery. I took a few casual photos which I might use – especially since she held an umbrella and we do enjoy paintings with umbrellas don’t we.
I have fresh peaches at home – though I didn’t make an effort to give this painting the specific texture and color of peaches. I just wanted to play. I think you think they’re apples. The color is a bit more peachy in the actual painting – but still not exactly. Making interesting brush marks was my focus and I accomplished that. This was a fun painting. It’s Friday. Have a wonderful weekend. Winifred
From time to time, over the past 4 years, I’ve viewed the reference photo I took and used for this painting. Often I felt it far too complex for me to paint – or at least, I didn’t want to work that hard. I did love the shapes of the chair backs and of course, the candlelight and the shadowy figures in the dark. Finally I decided I was ready and actually enjoyed the painting process very much. As always there is a change in painting content from that which existed in the photo but that’s to be expected. Hope you enjoy. Winifred
I painted this portrait during the time of the Tokyo Olympic Games. It portrays an emotion of the almost unbearable, whether it be sheer exhaustion, pain, sadness, defeat or even in the case of Simone Biles, “the twistees”. I’m sure this was an emotion that many of the athletes experienced at one time or another, as we all have in our lives.
As far as Simone Biles is concerned, I’m very proud of her decision to limit her performances in order to take care of mental and physical self. I hope we are all able to grow to to do the same.
I took many photos of this young lady with the intention of adding to my photo reference collection. I have many beautiful portraits of her. They are NORMAL beautiful portraits. Somehow, for reasons I cannot remember, I saw her hands go up to her face. It was not a pose I had created – not sure how it happened but I ask her immediately to repeat the action. I saw something special in it and more importantly I FELT something. Though I otherwise have some stunning photos of her, I immediately knew this was the pose I wanted to paint. It was so full of emotion. Hope you enjoy. Winifred
I textured my panel before I began this painting. I made a modest attempt to bear in mind the shape of the figurative elements so the texturing wouldn’t look completely crazy!
There was no umbrella showing in my reference photo though I knew she held one and so with a few expressive red lines, an umbrella was created. When people have seen this painting, they thought it referenced a far away exotic country. The fact is, I took the reference photo of a friend returning from a celebration. She was walking right in front of me, in the middle of the concrete street, with cars on the edge of the road and houses in front of her, right here in Poulsbo, Washington.
I’m enjoying living in a gallery. Many friends and neighbors have visited. It’s quite enjoyable when they do. Call first. 360.779.1375. If you don’t know about the gallery, please see my previous post. I hope to see you in the near future. Have a great day.