Finished Painting : Portrait of David J. (click to enlarge)
This is a painting I just completed for a show in December. The show is called “Artists by Artists” and will be held in North County San Deigo this December. The show is all about local artist painting other local artists… pretty cool idea! Mary Fleener curated the show and is actually making a painting of me!
I chose to paint David J. because he is someone I have admired and respected for many years… both for his music and his visual art. David was a founding member of the bands Bauhaus and Love and Rockets. This painting was a challenge for me as I really have had no experience painting portraiture. It was a good experience and I learned a lot.
I had a bunch of photos that I had taken of David over the past 5 years… but I decided to recreate this Shakespearean pose that I had used in the painting below.
Reflecting - painted in 2004
Knowing I would have to take some quality reference shots… I got more into photography during this project- which is both a blessing and a curse. Blessing because I really enjoy it! And a curse because now that I know better – I want better equipment – and photography gear is spendy! Here are a few of my photo studies (thanks Tom and Erika!):
I had David come by the studio for a photo shoot and we took a bunch of photos. As it turned out… the one that had the right expression, mood, pose was the worst quality photo that I took… its the one in the lower left with really dark lighting. So I used photoshop to revive it and then used it for the pose reference. I borrowed lighting information from some of the more successful photos.
Photos of David
Here is the under painting:
Here’s the first color wash:
Another color coat… still needs one more
... another color coat
Here’s what the paint pallet looked like in the end.
Once complete… I turned my dining room into a photo studio. I used to have everything shot professionally… but I’m trying to take as much of the process in house to save $. I just bought this light set for less than $200. Each bulb is 500 w… it works good.
… Snapped this one using a timer just for fun.
David and I
Well… that’s it for now. Hope you enjoyed my first blog post! I actually learned a lot about blogging in the last 30 mins… so I just may do this again… will keep ya posted.