– Alizaron Crimson
– Cadmium Red
– Deep Carmine
A rose by any other name would look as sweet.
I used reddish hues from three separate watercolor sets to reach the rich variety in this week’s portrait. On its own, cadmium looks more orange than anything else. Most other reds either lean toward earthiness or magenta-ness. So I combined them all – without mixing them completely – resulting in the swirling red background drapery, the blush to the sitter’s cheek, the auburn of hair, and the almost-pink of her shirt.
I’m very pleased with the way this one turned out. It should be stated right up front that the person in the painting looks nothing like the slender, pretty girl who sat for us. But a perfect likeness wasn’t the point. Instead, the task I set for myself was work brazenly, with a minimum of preparation or second guessing. And to get as much color on the page as humanly possible with each brush stroke.
Thanks to Elena Caravela for the inspiration. Check out her fantastic work on her blog, here. I adore her bold use of color – realistic in only the loosest sense. She also employs rowdy confidence in her brushwork and paint handling. I’d love to get closer to her level over time.
The feel of the reproduction here is a little different from past posts. I finally bought a scanner, which was used for this one instead of a camera. The immediate benefits of this approach is that the lighting is almost perfectly even – almost too perfectly. And it’s extremely crisp – no blur. The drawbacks are that you lose some of that ‘tactile’ dimension that exists in the photos, and there’s a slight seam, since the full picture didn’t fit on the flatbed at once.
Some of these problems can be overcome, as I get used to using the machine again.
What are you observations?