Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Children's faces

I've been trying to capture a little girl's face from a photo.   I"m having a very hard time, but I'll show you what it looks like right now.   Shelooks so sad.    I had to really turn down the corners of her mouth and darken around her eyes to give her this forlorn look.    It's actually what I was trying to capture here.    

At the senior center on Monday, John Carruthers showed us how he learned to paint faces.     Here he is with  some samples.

His process is so different than my own, but I took his workshop to see if there was something he does that would apply to what I'm doing.     

He first gave us a picture to trace, and then we ( 5 of us) marked our watercolor paper with only the eyes traced, the bottom of the nose, and a little line to mark the top of the head, the hairline, the sides of the face and the chinline.  Oh yes, and the mouth.  Then we measured to  find then other placements.     Using only a brown acrylic paint and water, we were to paint in the eyes and the lower nose with our darkest value, then tone it down to do the middle values - the shadows.    then he had us  mix a bright pink with while acrylic and apply to the face, covering the work we had already done.    Then he added some ochre, a read, and a yellow to our palettes and told us to work fast to paint as much as we could.       Here is my pic.   So now you have a happy child's face.    Those little missing teeth and small eyes were really challenging.      This is not how it looked when I finished that day.  Since then I have added touches tith colored pencils to finish her off.

It was fun working in our little group.  Some of the other artists in the room kind of kept their eyes on us to see what would be asked of us.   I think they may jsut brave it out and join us next time, as John is so patient and nurturing a teacher, they will soon get caught up in the exercise and forget they are out of their comfort zone.


  1. I would have run over to see what was happening! What fun and what a lot of progress you are making. I love the sad little face.

    1. It would have been fun to have you there. Wish you lived closer.