My triumph for the week was completion of…a real portrait. But I can’t take all the credit for this one. Part of the credit goes to my old friend Gayle, who is Sarah’s mother. This is the kind of friend all artists need. A friend who pays attention to what you’re about as an artist.
Gayle has been very encouraging of my work, even when the colors are pretty wild and not so realistic. Not long ago, she came up with a snapshot of her daughter, Sarah. It was taken some time ago when Sarah had dyed her hair in wild and unrealistic shades of green, red and blue.
“Her hair reminded me of your paintings,” Gayle said. “So I thought maybe you could paint her like this.”
Gayle was right. Although I struggled with the details of the face and trying to catch a likeness (those likenesses sure can scurry away when you try to grab them), I was able to go crazy with the hair and that made the whole process work for me. Frustrated and exhausted by the shape of the nose? No problem, add a little Alizarin Crimson to the hair. Fluff up the clouds a bit. Wow-hoo…color and flow. And then, back to the face.
I think the end result works. I hope Gayle agrees.