Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Painting "100+ Faces, No. 113"

I'm not going to show you the mugshot I painted from, out of respect for the real guy.

Trust me when I tell you the original police mugshot is blah in color and lighting, as most are.

That's what imagination is for.

I picked this face because of the glasses.  I need the practice on glasses.

Starting with my 4" square panel...

just a quick sketch.

The way I think about a face is the same I think about a landscape
or anything else for that matter.  It's just shadow and light and areas of color.
It's best if you just forget that it's a face.  At least until you're close to completion.

I map out the features just a bit for guidance.

Adding areas of color, paying some attention to values.
What I like about the small panel and painting faces is I jump around the painting
with the same color in spots.  I have a different approach with other subjects
as you see in earlier posts.

Adding some reds.

Adding a hint of the glasses.

Filling in the highlighted areas.

Adding small touches here and there, not overworking the glasses.

This is the point where I tweek the values a bit and add some needed touches
of Indian Yellow.  We have a lot of green/gold in our skin, so if you
end up with a chalky, rosy feel to a face, I'd suggest mixing in some greens.

 I like saving the background for last.  I use it to form the painted part,
taper in when needed and play with the edges.  You can see I tried
a few 'swatches', just feeling out which one I like best.

I also looked at the original photo and checked a few
traits this man had - I tweeked the right eye a bit.
 If you notice the ears aren't particularly symmetrical, 
it's one of his individual traits.

Nobody's perfect.

 And .... done.


  1. Oh!! have no idea how helpful this is...its like an on going workshop...Thank you soo much.

  2. I love seeing how you approach this differently than your other paintings. Great Job! Thanks for putting this out there.

  3. So helpful! A mention or two of the colours you're using will help a novice like me experiment with a little more direction.

  4. Whoa, that's a fast demo from just Sunday's FAQ... thanks!!! Love it!

  5. Incredible! No matter how many times I see this... I just love love it. Thank you Karin!

  6. What a brilliant portrait. Thanks again for creating this blog. I love seeing process.

  7. This is so great! I agree with Cathy. Seeing this over and over... it just gets better! Thank you for sharing, Karin.

  8. I thought you said, "I need glasses".....
    Thanks for the demo!

  9. Karin you are an inspiration. I live in Decatur Ga. I am a painter and I struggle with being "too tight". I want to be loose like you! Thank you for your blog! I've followed you for years. I love "Fifty shades of Green".

  10. I love seeing your step by step process. Quite interesting. Looking forward to seeing more of your process in the future.

  11. Karin, hello - process shots are my favorite -it is such a treat getting to see all the different stages and reading about them too -

  12. Thank you for showing the step by step process...very inspiring and I really needed that today.