Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Portrait From a Photo...Part 4,Kneadable Erasers, Masking Fluid Applicator, First Wash

This is the photo I am working from.
This is the drawing on tracing paper which I placed over clear acrylic graph. (See blog...Portrait From a Photo, Part 2)
Here is the transferred drawing. I traced over the drawing using a ballpoint pen. A pencil could be used also. The trick is to draw heavily enough so you can see the transferred lines but light enough so the lines are not indented into the paper. (See blog...Portrait From a Photo, Part 3) On this transferred drawing is a kneadable eraser. I will use it to lighten any transferred areas that are too strong. I don't want the pencil lines showing through the watercolor. I press the kneadable eraser on the flowers which have dark transferred lines. When I lift the eraser, the lines are lighter. You can see the lifted lines on the eraser. The lines on the eraser can be kneaded into the eraser, the eraser flattened and pressed on the paper to lighten other lines. See the steps below.
The next step is to cover fine hairs that will be light against a dark background with a masking fluid made specifically for watercolors. I covered the ribbons hanging down her shirt also.
For years I used a small brush to apply the masking fluid but I couldn't get fine lines. I saw an artist demonstrate her "tool". She sharpened the end of one of her brushes. The tool is perfect. The blob on the lid of the masking fluid is dried masking fluid. It is a bit like soft rubber.
After the masking fluid was dry, I laid in the first washes. I used the lightest local color that I expected to have on the face, the shirt and the jacket. I used Cobalt blue for the jacket, Primary red mixed with Quinacridone red for the shirt, and a mix of Quinacridone red, Permanent Orange and New Gamboge for the flesh. These were all very pale washes, (a lot of water and a little paint). After I brushed the paint on with a No. 12 pointed round brush, I wiped off the excess color so the result would be as pale as possible.
Here is the painting at this point with the tools I used. Notice the scrap of paper where I checked my colors before brushing them on the paper. I am painting on Arches ART BOARD which is 140wt. CP paper  attached to a stiff backing. Because of this backing, I don't have to be concerned about my paper warping from the water.

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