Last week I was commissioned by a Husband who wanted to do something very special for his Wife for their Anniversary. He decided he wanted to Give her a portrait of their kids, but here is the catch: One of the kids passed away a few years ago. Yea, I know right? There were 3 in all. Anyway, he told me, “Just do ya’ thang man.” Which, as I said before, is music to my ears! Full Creative POWER!
“Everything starts with a SKETCH!” Phase 1 is just Layout. Just getting a gist of where I want to take it. I’m not as big on Rough Drafts as I should be, but I do most of my Ground Work in my head. Even creating as I go along. *Not recommended for beginners, SORRY KIDS* 😉
Next I begin adding some weight & details to my lines. I got a CRAZY vision to add some Angel Wings to represent the deceased girl (She’s in the middle at the top). I wanted it to appear as if her wings are making a heart and are wrapped around her siblings.
Eyes…eyes are so important. My college professor once told me that, “the most important features in Portraiture are the Eyes, Nose, & Mouth.” If you can get those right, then the rest just falls into place. If you think about it, these are what truly define our faces…in my eyes…ESPECIALLY the EYES. *No Pun Intended*
Now it’s time to start defining their shadows and adding Value to Sketch.
Once I reach the hair, I go with a heavier lead (8B). Really creates a great Contrast & Sense of Texture.
Next I begin adding Details to the wings. While I was doing so, I had another Vision! Decided to shade the inside of the heart instead of leaving it white. This way it plays with eyes make you perceive the heart as her wings while simultaneously acting as a backdrop. It’s like the Foreground AND Background at the same time!
All done! Checked with my Client and he absolutely LOVED it! Commissioner satisfaction is better than money for an Artist. He decided he wanted to frame it so I had to do some Frame shopping…not the manliest task, but hey…goes with the territory. LoL
We decided to go with the Maple Brown Wide Frame with a black Mat.
“Better the End of a thing…than its Beginning.”