This portrait began as a pencil sketch for my Basic Drawing Skills class. I just didn’t feel like shading the entire background in with pencil so I threw some watercolour on it. I liked that but then the pencil work seemed a little overwhelmed by the paint so I painted right over all the pencil shading. I really liked that but unfortunately I had just done it on regular paper so I redid it on watercolour paper. This is that image. Two things that interested me were to have the greatest contrast (light against dark) not on the eyes but on the cheek. The second was to create some interesting rhythm in the hair. After I had painted the hair I did some calligraphic strokes with white gouache. I like the energy but I’m still deciding if those white strokes are too strong and overpower the actual subject. The beauty of following through on ideas that come to me (like the white strokes) is that now I can live with them and the painting will reveal if they are too much.
8.5″ X 11″