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Art Art theory Drawing Gouache Painting People Portrait Sktchy Sktchy

Alexander’s Analogous Bathroom Selfie in Lavender

Alexander H from his bathroom selfie on Sktchy, 8x8" on watercolor paper
Alexander H from his bathroom selfie on Sktchy, 9×8″ on watercolor paper

Analogous colors sit beside each other on the color wheel. For this gouache experiment with analogous colors, I chose Dioxazine Purple, Quinacridone Magenta, and Pyrole Red; basically a violet, a red-violet and a red. Plus white of course. My favorite gouache paints are M. Graham, especially their white, which is so wonderfully creamy.

Normally when I paint I try to match the colors I see, so painting with arbitrary colors is a very different approach for me, one that requires focusing more on value and warm/cool relationships. There was no way I’d get “normal” skin colors with this combo of colors. Below is my original sketch on Xerox paper which I then transferred to watercolor paper.

Initial sketch
Initial sketch

One funny thing about this Sktchy gouache class is that the teacher seems to pick reference photos of people I never would have chosen. The photo reference for this lesson: a guy seemingly looking in his bathroom mirror when he woke up in the morning. It didn’t inspire me, but maybe the combination of a non-interesting photo and the experiment with color took the pressure off so I could just play. I had so much fun with this one!

Photo reference from Sktchy
Photo reference from Sktchy
Categories
Art Gouache Portrait Sktchy Sktchy

Trying Gouache Again

Gouache portrait, 10×8 inches on Arches CP Watercolor paper

I’ve studied gouache before as in this post with color charts and several other times over the years. This month I’ve been participating in the “Sktchy 30 Faces in 30 Days – Gouache and Watercolor” challenge with a different artist demonstrating their way of painting a portrait in either watercolor or gouache each day.

The first gouache demo was presented by Jordan M. Rhodes (@jmr_art on Instagram) who I’ve been following on IG for a long time. I tried to paint along with him but kept on struggling. I ended up taking much longer, painting multiple layers until I was able complete it with some degree of satisfaction. And of course it took me several hours just to get the drawing right-ish first.

My preliminary drawing
Reference photo

I had hoped that doing this 30 day challenge would force me to work faster, but nope. It wasn’t until I got to the next gouache class that I picked up the insights that have given me much more confidence and better skills, which I’ll write about when I share the next portrait.

Categories
Drawing Faces People Portrait Sktchy Sktchy

Rainbow Hair and a Pretty Pointy Profile Pic

Ioana F from Sktchy, pencil and colored pencil, 10x8 inches
Ioana F from Sktchy, pencil and colored pencil, 10×8 inches

I was inspired to sketch Ioana because of her brilliant hair color (see her photo on Sktchy here) and because a dear friend had to shave her head while undergoing chemo and I was looking for photos of beautiful bald women to share with her. (Ioana also posted photos of herself with a shaved head on Sktchy.) Maybe when my friend finishes her treatment and her hair grows back she’ll dye it shades of pink and orange to celebrate.

Profile sketch from internet photo, pencil, 10x8 inches
Profile sketch from internet photo, pencil, 10×8 inches

This sketch was done to practice profile drawing which I find difficult. She has such an unusual facial structure as you can see in the photo below, but somehow looks beautiful despite the pointy chin and long nose and big ears. She looks nervous about it all in my sketch.

Reference photo from somewhere on the internet
Categories
Art Drawing People Sktchy

Cozy Sleepers on a Rainy Day

Cozy Sleepers on a Rainy Day
Cozy Sleepers on a Rainy Day, graphite on copy paper, 11×8.5″

I’m not quite as relaxed as these two but now that competent grown-ups are in charge of the USA again I feel like I can relax a bit and focus on something other than the news.

It’s been rainy and windy in the SF Bay Area and it’s so cozy being home, with time to draw, bake bread and make soup.

I miss seeing my family but I’m lucky that I enjoy my own company and being alone. I’m hopeful that by this time next year we will be able to stop social distancing and start being social again.

Categories
Art Drawing Faces People Sktchy

Fun Portrait Sketch of Pulcherie

Pulcherie, Graphite pencil on recycled printer paper, 11 x 8 inches
Pulcherie, Graphite pencil on recycled printer paper, 11 x 8 inches.

This portrait of Pulcherie was so fun to sketch! According to her Sktchy profile, she is a French artist living in China. You can see the original photo reference on Sktchy here.

It’s always such a gift when a drawing just goes well! I was able to do this one in a couple of hours while listening to Barack Obama’s latest (audio) book that he narrates. I never noticed before that he had a slight lisp but I’m sure I’m hearing one on the S-sounds when he reads aloud from his book.