This is part of my ongoing effort to become better at painting people, be it portraits or just urban scenes like this one.
I bought a new camera recently, it has a mega-zoom capability (Nikon Coolpix P1000). So far I feel a bit like a voyeur but I guess I’ll get used to taking pictures of people without them knowing it after a few months of practice. It’s all about practice, that’s how you become a good artist or a skilled voyeur.
I painted this sketch on an Arches paper block, 31 x 23 cm – rough.
Click the thumbnail belong for a full-sized image.
Yes, I am having fun practising my portraits, the reason for this is I can see a large improvement every time I paint a new one. I have been using portrait images downloaded from Sktchy App (iPhone) which is great for artists and self-obsessed selfie users who want a free portrait of themselves.
I went to Basis on Folkkungagatan (147) here in Stockholm, it’s an art school and every Saturday my old gang of life drawing enthusiasts meet and sketch like crazy under the eastern-European guidance of Gabor.
He starts with a 5 minute pose but the rest of the session is 1 – 4 minute poses, everyone is pretty exhausted afterwards.
What’s nice about going to life drawing on a Saturday is that everyone is relaxed and a big group of us go for a coffee afterwards and have a light-hearted post analysis of our sketches. It was the first time for me this term and it was the last session before Christmas. Next year I will be able to join my friends more as my own life drawing class will be on Thursdays and not Fridays as it was this year. I have been pretty tired on Saturday mornings this term because of working late on Friday evenings.
All features sketches here were sketched between 2 – 4 minutes.
I never know whether to call it figure painting or life drawing, I guess it’s more correct to call them figure paintings but they were executed in minutes and not hours, maybe you understand my dilemma.
These, whatever you call them were sketched at my own life drawing class last Friday. It was the first time for the model to pose and I think she did a great job. I managed a few decent paintings even though I wasn’t 100% relaxed as I was responsible for the evening. I am happy with my output right now, it’s a productive period.
I would love to just paint portraits everyday until I felt I had mastered them but there is always something that gets in the way. It’s not good to be so manic either, I can always try to be better at several things at the same time. My progress may not be as fast but at least I’ll be having more fun.
The model for this watercolour portrait was once again from Sktchy App.
If you would like to see a larger version please click the thumbnail below.
I am enjoying my return to figure painting. I have been using charcoal for ages but not anymore, at least until I crave a change, … which happens quite often. The poses here are 2-5 minutes long, the drawing has to be quick as you can imagine. I paint as much as I can, no time to be fussy -that is why it’s so much fun!
I don’t know how long I can keep this up? I want to paint a portrait every day for the foreseeable future so that I can improve in this area. The only problem is there are other projects that need to be taken care of too. I can juggle pretty good but dealing with my new art career is tricky.
I am happy enough with this portrait, I like the nose – that’s enough for me to like the painting. See, I am not too demanding on myself! I spent too much time fiddling with the shading so it’s not perfect but I know I will improve each time I do a portrait and that’s incentive enough for me.
Painted on Suanders Waterford CP 26 x 36 cm.
Click the image below if you would like to see the full- sized painting.
I have been trying really hard not to paint sail boats for a while now, it’s hard – I just love to paint them. The reason I am avoiding them is so that I can develop as a watercolour artist by painting other things that I am not used to and find difficult. Portraits are difficult, the one that’s featured here doesn’t resemble the original model very well. I wasn’t trying too get a perfect likeness, my goal is to master painting skin and building the facial form, I think creating a likeness will improve as I practice.
The model reference by the way was downloaded from the iPhone only Sktchy app. Why it’s only iPhone users who can use this service I do not know. Click the thumbnail below to see the full-sized image