Saturday, June 5, 2010

Self-Portrait at Masquerade

Last month the swanky jewellery store I work at had a big masquerade themed event. I thought it would be fun to really go all out and get dressed up for it, with an ulterior motive of getting some cool photos to paint.

This is the photo I was working from. Of course I forgot to put my dress on before, so I had to combine it with a different photo showing my dress.

I was kind of experimenting, seeing what I could do in more of a graphic novel type style, especially with using masking fluid to draw in the detail and then fill in the dark around in. The idea was to put in the masking fluid where I wanted in to stay white and do my usual scribbles and drops all around, and see what it looked like when it was done.

But I'm an idiot and totally mixed up what order I should be doing things in, among other things, got carried away and went in a different direction, and the final piece has nothing really do do with how I started.

For some reason I put on the masking fluid first, all while leaving the grid on. That's no good because it'll show through. And I was feeling lazy and didn't bother redoing it, so I tried to do everything I could before taking off the masking fluid, and putting ink right up to it to give it a purpose, when I should have just ignored it (as was the plan) and done everything in order, then put the masking fluid back on if I needed to. If that makes any sense...

Here's how it looked half way. This version actually looks more like me, though that's not really the part I don't like about the finished product. I don't know... maybe I just have to get out of the habit of putting a layer of charcoal and conte on top of things I'm not sure about. Or maybe I shouldn't expect a first attempt to go smoothly. Or maybe I just choose a poor subject for the style I wanted. I might start again tomorrow.


  1. But are you the sort of artist who always finds it hard to like a finished piece, when you have just completed it? Maybe put it away for a little while and come back to it with a fresh eye - just now you might be too involved with it.
    I quite like it actually... I especially like the red and orange touches, the eyes and the hair. The dark, dark background is great - it really makes the figure stand out well. Just my humble opinion...

  2. No, I generally like what I do. Maybe that's just the giant ego? :) But this one just... doesn't... I don't know. Maybe later.