Archive Two completed August 2006
Baby Brudder, Brucie
July 26, 2006
Title: Baby Brudder, Brucie
conte on oil toned board 12x16
This is the reference photo...it's myself and my younger brother, Bruce at ages 4 and 3.
I decided to go for a close crop of the faces and to do it in color. I started by gessoing a board and then I applied a terra verde tint in oils. I then sketched myself in charcoal...I work left to right. I took photos of different stages, but alas, I messed up when uploading them to my puter. So I can just show where I ended my first 8 hour session.
I have a pretty limited palette with the contes...this one is done in dark brown, yellow ochre, blue, pink and magenta. I'm not especially pleased with the surface and think next time I might add a little marble dust to the gesso, this is a touch slick.
Here's a close up...
I spent today getting my likeness closer and softening colors and lines to get a more youthful look. I may do some minute adjustments after I've added Bruce, but for now it's close enough.
I'd hoped to move on to Bruce today, but just wasn't happy with how I looked, so worked on it a bit more. Now it's starting to look like other photos I had from that period, and a little closer to 5 years old than 3, which should be about right. I'll have to run this by my mother to see what she thinks :)
July 31, 2006
Well, my mother said it looked like me but the hair should be blonder, so I've lightened it some and made another adjustment to the smile. I got this much done on Bruce in about 4 hours today...I do the sketch in vine charcoal and then block in the shadow areas first, following up with a block in of the lights. This color is closer to the actual colors, although probably a touch darker as it's 11PM and I matched it to the RL painting in poorer light. Those are cast shadows on the bottom.
August 2, 2006
Well, been quite a few changes to Bruce, since the photo ref isn't very good I've been having to work in front of the puter, but it's just too close to really see the large picture, so to speak. So today I pulled my easel out in front of my desk and blocked in shapes a bit better. It's also been hard making up the colors as I go along. Bruce just didn't look right in the pinker violet tones I have, so I'm going over those tones with a burnt umber. Another issue is that that my burnt umber has a definite red cast to it, and I don't have any greens to kick back the saturation. So I come out a redder dark blond and he comes out a bit redder than the auburn I remember. The green background accentuates the issue, but I still like it, will just have to accept the redder tones. I still need to adjust his chin and I have a lot of shadowing to do, but I'm getting closer. I also have to make a small adjustment to my eyelid so our eyes meet. I have out of town company coming tomorrow, so won't get back to this until Friday.
August 22, 2006
Well...calling this done...I hope my brother likes it. Am including a couple closeups so you can see the texture of the conte over the gessoed/oil tinted base.