Sunday, May 9, 2010

For Want of a 25w Bulb

I started out this morning with some more copying of The Tell-Tale Heart, but my bulb burnt out. I haven't been able to make it to an art store in weeks (there's only one and it's in the middle of nowhere) I have no paper and nothing much to do. Except this. I started it ages ago and it turned out just brutally bad.

First, a couple of credits. This drawing is from a photo my friend Starsha, who generously let me paint it. You can see her work on her webpage. I love having many photographers for friends (and thank God I do as I can't take photos to save my life). I could paint loads of this guy, she has tonnes of good ones. I loved the expression in this one. The band is The Creationists. I got the title (Funk is it's Own Reward) from a comment on their page I liked.

I used some handmade watercolour paper I'd been dying to try, and unfortunately it didn't work all that great. I made a smaller painting and discovered that the paper sort of came apart when it got wet. Not ideal, obviously. But I loved the texture, so I thought I'd try it with some charcoal. Just a nice, traditional, straightforward drawing such as I haven't done in, well, probably years. No good! It caught all over the place and ended up being a dusty mess with no detail at all. So much for my careful copying of his features. Luckily I'd put some masking fluid down first where I wanted really bright highlights, so there was at least something to work with instead of being universally grey.

So, lacking anything else to do and figuring I couldn't possibly make it any worse, I brought it back out. And fell back on my usual device of scribbling all over it with ink and watercolour until I liked it. tada! I like it, even if it's not quite as precise a portrait as I was originally going for.

It's on a large sheet - 16" x 20" but was made to be matted to 11" x 14". I'm leaving it up to whoever buys it before I matte it because I think it will look good even smaller, cropped right into his face.

Buy it at my etsy shop!

1 comment:

  1. I see what you mean about Attempt No1; but the final result is really nice. Sometimes you just have to let something sit for a while, then come back to it... I love the expression on his face - it's very earnest and sweet.