Portrait in progress: Jen

Even when I’m not posting them here, I often take photographs of my works in progress as part of my process. Seeing a photo of a piece helps me evaluate it with different eyes and make decisions about where I need to go next.

In person, I was getting frustrated with this piece because it seemed to have reached a point where it contained way too many colors (and don’t worry, I know the red line on the chin has to go). That problem was so predominant in my mind that I was having trouble thinking about other aspects of the painting. Seeing the painting in a more compact form on the computer screen helped me see some changes I want to make in the hair highlights, for example. I still don’t have a clue what I’ll end up doing with the background, though. Any suggestions?

A couple weeks ago I shared another portrait in progress with you, of my friend Kim; the final version of that portrait is now up on my artist website (check it out in the portraits section).

What tools do you use to evaluate your works in progress?

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10 Responses to “Portrait in progress: Jen”

  1. Jen says:

    Jul, my Jay Leno chin isn’t going to be easy to capture. Feel free to give me a Kirk Douglas if you need to change it up. I love where you are going with this but I have just fallen in love with your style so much I think it is hard for me to be critical. I would love to pose for you with natural hair too and really give you a challenge.

    To try to be constructive, what about something in the background that has horizontal strokes to create contrast to all the long strokes? I’m thinking horizony…if even indoors.

    and finally…I like being your muse du jour. Flog on mistress. Flog on.

  2. Jul says:

    @Jen – you definitely get to pose again. No one takes a flogging like you do.

    Thanks for the horizony suggestion. :)

  3. andrea says:

    oh i love this… what a great idea, to use a photo to evaluate works in progress.
    what i do is just leave them alone and in a few days, or whenever the time is right, i see what it needs next.
    andrea recently posted..love bomb

  4. MaryAnne says:

    LOVE this painting! I am a painter by nature and I find your blog to be very inspiring! :)

    Happy ICLW! #134
    <3your newest hanger on :) MaryAnne
    MaryAnne recently posted..Before and After

  5. Jul says:

    @Andrea – Thanks! I have a lot of those, too – paintings in progress just waiting for the right time.

    @MaryAnne – Thanks so much! New hanger-ons always welcome. :)

  6. Hi Jul, I like your style, sort of Expressionistic. Edvard Munch popped into my mind. This seems like a strong portrait developing…maybe it can take rich color in the background? I’m not bothered by that red in the background…maybe more? I don’t know..sort of brainstorming ’cause I like what you’re doing!
    Peggy Stermer-Cox recently posted..242-365- On “Fire”…

  7. Jul says:

    Thanks, Peggy. I appreciate the brainstorm!

  8. Sloane says:

    I am loving the flow in this portrait, and I am a color freak, so I think the colors are awesome! I also photograph the process as I move along. I have only done a few portraits and it was an emotional rollercoaster for me, loving it one day hating it the next. I have been known to set the ease’ up by my bed and pray for guidance in my sleep! LOL. I also drag them around the house and to work to mull over and make random notes.
    Sloane recently posted..Empty handed

  9. Jul says:

    I totally know that roller coaster, Sloane! I think I ride it every time I paint. :)

  10. I like the outfit and necktie, or bandana. I like the green bandana. What are those things called….I am wordless like my dad….gosh.

    My friend in town today bought this cool Chinese bit of art.

    till nex time Julie,
    KEV

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