It's time for another update on my latest portrait of a little toddler by the beach. If you follow my blog, you might remember that I had presented my client with two options for her son's portrait. One was an illustration type of painting and the other a more realistic portrait rendition. The 2nd version was the winner and I have been hard at work getting everything in place.
As with every initial layout, what seems like a good idea at the beginning might end up distracting from the overall feel of the composition or was just wrong to begin with. I always say the painting will tell me what it needs and this one is no exception. The sail was a distracting shape and I had to take it out. I also wanted the boy to be smiling more, so tiny adjustments had to be made around the mouth - not quiet done yet, but getting there. I also extended the beach further out, but right now am having some trouble with painting the water's edge. I really do not like painting water - it's just not my thing! But the struggle continues on that front and I keep telling myself if I can paint fingers and toes than surely the water will get done as well.
Iddi Bitty Toes
The easiest way to paint toes and fingers is to look at shapes. I refer to them as sausage links that either point left, right, up or down. To make digits look real the next step is to careful observe the color of the flesh. Certain areas like the tip of the toes tend to be pinker and more chromatic. There has to be a drastic shift in value to make things pop, like the space between the toes or the nail bed. I left some of the grey showing through so you can get a sense how the underpainting can help in hitting the right note for the flesh tones.
Every thing is still a bit rough around the edges, but you can see that by pulling in colors from the surrounding areas how edges can be kept soft or made to be sharp. Below is a slideshow that shows the steps the painting has gone through thus far. There is still a lot that needs to be done ...