Victoria, Oil on Gessoed Paper, 7x10
Well, I had a bit of a wrench in my plans to get right to work this morning. Last month I had a falling out with my my mother's husband and while no more contact with him is a good thing for me, the whole thing was nasty (well, HE was nasty) and I really needed to go over the whole thing with Doug, who always helps me put things in perspective.
So I got up to the studio late, around 11am, answered a few emails and well, I admit to surfing around a bit, procrastinating.
Finally I got the paint out at noon and worked until about 4pm until it was time to get dinner started.
The good news is that I worked on one of the portraits I had started over a month ago and I am quite happy with what I did today. I was not sure how I would be handling the painting aspect of these (doing the drawings was great fun!) and frankly I was a bit afraid at first but I just dove in and am feeling pretty peachy about it right now.
Might change my mind tomorrow though, or I might like it and leave it the way it is and just move on to the next study. I am a bit disappointed that I didn't really capture the likeness of Victoria, who was a fellow resident at the Vermont Studio Center with me last winter. But in general, that isn't my goal with doing portraits so I decided not to stress about it. The only reason I did stress about it all was because my agreement with all of the residents who posed for photos for me was that I would give them one of the studies or small pieces that I would do and I can't help myself from feeling that the study at least should look like them a little bit.
And I did learn today that I should make the next batch of drawings darker. I put down two glazes over the drawing and after those it was really difficult to see the drawing underneath, so I practically had to start the drawing all over again, which probably accounts for my having trouble getting the likeness as well. On the other hand it may have been a plus to not have the drawing visible, maybe I would have felt too compelled to stick to it too much. I want these portraits to not be perfect, to not be a traditional style portrait and to be a bit rough around the edges. There are a lot of lines scratched into the paint and I hope to also move these into a bit more abstraction eventually, but despite that I do feel it necessary to begin with an accurately drawn image. Anyway, I began painting another study today (I have six drawings ready to be painted) and will try to finish it tomorrow.
It was beyond wonderful to be painting again too, by the way.