Thursday, January 3, 2013

A Brief Trip into Fine Art

Over the month of December I took time away from illustration to work on some gifts for family members. (And to just take a break.  Was starting to feel burned out!  Ridiculous I know!)  So rather than pieces that would accompany text and tell a story that way, I worked on some pieces that are more personal and work more as things of beauty.

The first is a portrait of my daughter and son reading a favorite story book.  I did this for my husband in acrylics.  I haven't done a painted portrait since college (20 years ago!) so I wasn't sure I could accomplish it.  I think it turned out okay.  It does look like them.  I used a photo as reference   The piece took about 20 hours to complete from sketches to finishing touches.  My kids told me  I didn't get the skin tones right.  I agree but I also know getting that color right is REALLY hard.  Crayola might have crayon or two that are close, but it is hard to create that color and make it look natural when our own skin tones are fluctuating and very translucent.  - little critics-

This is a drawing done in graphite.  I used a reference picture from the internet to get all the fine details of the harnesses and the structure of the mules faces and the shadows.  In the original photo they were standing father apart.  So to tighten the composition, I pulled their heads together and focused on that part of the animals.  I think it turned out pretty good.  I wish I would have spent more time on it.  I started it the day before I was going to give it as a gift to my dad.  I started at about 10 am the day before and finished it at 4 pm the following day, just an hour and 15 minutes before I was going to arrive at his home for Christmas dinner!  Cutting it too close there!  But for not having done a detailed pencil study in a while it turned out pretty good.  If you'd like to check out the original photo, click here.