Bob Baker, “Portrait of Tea Leoni” (2014)

10 Aug

IMG_3623Bob Baker, Portrait of Tea Leoni (2014)

Note: click on image to enlarge

Here’s my drawing from this morning — a portrait of Tea Leoni.  I based it on a photograph I found on the internet that happened to be lit just right.  I’d love to credit the photographer but I don’t know the name.  I did find it on TYFINWallpapers.

Anyway — I’m trying to teach myself to paint portraits in the chiaroscuro style — the Renaissance method — using a terrific book authored by William L. Maughan entitled The Artist’s Complete Guide to Drawing the Head (2005 Watson-Guptill, New York).  Maughan provides a very specific methodology, right down to the materials.  You use Strathmore’s “Charcoal” paper in Velvet Gray, and CarbOthello pastel pencils in just two colors — Caput Mortuum Red and Titanium White.  Basically, the gray paper establishes the mid-tone and you use the Caput Mortuum for darks and the Titanium for highlights.  Half tones are created by thinly layering the pastel in on the gray paper.  It’s a very cool system and really works.

I was really just fooling around with it this morning, after finding that well-lit photo of Tea Leoni.  As I progress I plan to light my own subjects using the method given by Maughan.  I deviated from Maughan in another respect — I inadvertently drew on the textured side of the paper, a Maughan “no-no.”   Maughan recommends drawing on the smooth reverse side. I still like the way it turned out.


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