S3 portrait

Working on a painting coming out of the life drawing session. Several passes after putting down the underpainting with the model in the room. Evaluation and learning

  1. I didn’t measure or grid up. As a result, things moved around even in the first stages. Altering my position meant that sightlines got messed up. NOW isn’t this a good thing in some ways? Yes for an more imaginative and conceptual engagement but not so much with getting a likeness.
  2. Learning: get the observation done and then take a leap of imaginative flight…not the other way around.
  3. I found I kept going back and re painting rather than taking a structured approach to putting the paint on.
  4. Decide before starting IF this is impressionist/alla prima or blended rennaissance style (not falling between the two).
  5. Simplify to get planes working more structurally – a lesson learned after looking at Velasquez (who painted pretty much alla prima)
  6. Float the paint on the layers to get the planes of the face coming forward.
image at end of the life room session
Iteration 2: lost the drawing of the face – face now out of proportion – angle corrected in terms. Interestingly, I kept thinking of the Wickerman while painting this (the Ingrid Pitt character).
Iteration 3:
focus on face meant I stopped looking at the whole picture – face has grown as I ended up going for more of a sight-size approach with the ipad image – but now head bigger than the rest. Interesting in some ways – Paula Rego goes for that approach with her figures creating a sense of awkwardness; thinking also Helena Bonham Carter’s large-headed queen of arts in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland – dream distortion of perspective. Also half tones not being picked up by the camera…how to solve that? research needed. I quite like the ghosts of the books and the lack or resolution in the objects – can I make more of this and the large head? I am tempted not to resolve these problems and instead make more of them.
significant revision to capture a better likeness (including correcting proportion) and also to get the painting to work in the frame more effectively
– And the next iteration – finally feel that it is coming together, balancing elements I was keen to get working; perspective seems better and the colour seems to help the face pop out from the background more effectively

One pass additional planned for this painting. Turning to the thematic of folk horror more fully, addition ‘props’ required. A black egg either in 3D or on the page of the book she is reading and perhaps a vista to an imaginary landscape with the aim of creating an othered ‘off-space’. TBC.

I painted a vista in on the left-hand side but it seemed to cut into the unity of the painting. The egg did however sit more comfortably as part of the boos thereby adding a bit of extra interest in the form of (hopefully) an enigma. More work on the hand and a little more work on the face just to enhance a greater sense of a real body occupying space. Just a bit tidying and definition of the background to go now as well deciding whether pr not to include the pattern on the dress.

By tanyakrzywinskablog

After working in the computer industry and spending some years conducting research into cinema and digital media, I became convinced that the innovative qualities of videogames as participatory media required closer academic attention. As such I have spent most of my career championing the inclusion of games within the academy, and arguing for games as an art form, a role I continue as a Professor at Falmouth University. Alongside this, and my scholarly work on the Gothic, I also maintain, in various forms, a visual art practice. This blog comes out of enrolling on the MA Fine Art degree programme at Central Sr Martins. It is mainly a record of my reflections on the work that I have undertaken for the degree. After having written about folk horror in games and cinema as an academic, this blog will focus on folk horror as a focus for my art practice.

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