Monday, December 3, 2012

Retro Bailey


Backward Glance  © 2012 by Karen Mathison Schmidt
6 x 6 inches • acrylic on GessobordTM
private collection • Poway, California

Remember this pencil sketch I did a while back?

Well, today I decided it was high time I made into a painting. Here’s Bailey, lying on a patterned cushion with a brightly colored pop-art style pillow behind.  I purposely left thick outlines around her to keep more of a pop-art illustration-y type feeling for the whole painting.

 I started by going over the pencil sketch loosely with only shades and washes of mars black acrylic.

 I used a vermilion glaze over the entire painting, then added a burnt sienna glaze to Bailey, with phthalo blue glaze for the underpainting of her eye.

I added more glazes: some phthalo blue in the shadowy parts of her fur, and a thin fuschia glaze to the pillow in the background and the parts of her coat which will end up being the lightest areas. Then, starting with her eye, I started adding opaque acrylics to the painting. Here’s a close-up of her eye in the finished painting:

I start by adding a few highlights, like on the tip of her nose ...

 ... and her ears and the fur on the back of her head. Conventionally, artists wait until last to add the highlights. Not me. Not this time. Once I had her eye finished, I was too excited to wait.

I decided to keep the pinkish vermilion of the underpainting on the side of her neck. It was just too cool to cover up!

Last, I did the background fabrics. Don’t let patterned fabrics intimidate you. Remember, just a suggestion of the pattern is enough. I painted in the olive green of the cushion very loosely to let the underpainting show through a lot here ... it helps keep things lively!


Kathleen said...

Love your style! Thanks for sharing your process on this one. Really beautifully done!

Karen M Schmidt said...

Thanks, Kathleen ... I just visited your blog and your paintings are beautiful! And I love the murals, too. The one with the three kids and the dog waving at the train is awesome ... love the shadows on that!

Sara said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! I want to go try one of my own now! :D

Anonymous said...

I so enjoy your blog! Your colors are always wonderful, and I appreciate the information you share. Thank you!

Susan Garriques said...

I just "discovered" your art thanks to a post on Facebook by Kimberly Santini. Really really like this piece. Thanks for including the process and the close-up of the eye! Love the colors.