New Painting Series 2017 – Progress

So I have recently finished the second of a new series of paintings I am working on for 2017. These pieces reflect my interest in portraiture but also fashion, hopefully raising questions but also taking a comedic look at modern culture. And hopefully aiming to create other narratives that people can identify with too. You can also see the first piece in this series here !
The reference I used for this second piece was from a Vogue Magazine from 2016. I always try to find images that have character to draw from, and this figure looked moody and arrogant in contrast to the childish 70s style background. It is as though she thought of herself as way too cool and I also liked how it was so different to the happy, sparkly character of the first piece! I love the idea of all the pieces being different characters we either like or dislike.
Early pencil stages…
I started as always by drawing out a pencil outline on a 3ft x 3ft canvas and then inking the lines in with thin watered down black acrylic paint. Starting with the background, I then watered down many acrylic colours and spread them over the with a large brush until they mixed together in places. I then hung the painting on the wall until the colours mixed and dripped downwards.  This was a technique suggested to me by a friend that I thought I’d try. It was such a lot of fun and I repeated this 3 times so the background became a colourful mess! When dry I then faded it out in places, so it wasn’t so consistent and looked more organic like the wildlife it was representing. I then continued to paint the figure, her clothing and face. Finally outlining different areas so some parts stand out more, giving an illustrative feel to the piece.
Part of doing this series is also about loosening up and not painting or drawing in such a restrictive style, having more fun and learning quicker techniques. Having not painted very often it has been a great learning experience.  Making images more original and my own, learning more about colour, colour mixing, applying paint, face and body proportions and composition. Hopefully then to be able to translate these ideas and new skills onto paper and any other work I will do. I hope to exhibit these paintings in a gallery or exhibition this year.
Messy background fun.!
There are many things that I feel still need working on such as proportions and shapes on the face, skin colours and shading, However there are many aspects I am pleased with and would love to do more of – such as the background shapes and ‘drippy’ style. Also experimenting more with applying light layers of paint rather than thick layers to begin with.  A lot of fun!
See more progress of the project so far here !
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