I’m just about finished painting the color layer over the monochrome underpainting. In fact, I have maybe a day’s worth of minor touch-ups and adjustments before the painting is complete.
I tried a few different approaches as I worked on the clothes and the flesh tones. For the most part, the clothes were painted with the same technique as the chair… however, when I started work on the shirt, I decided to use a mixture of Ivory Black and French Ultramarine in the transparent glaze layer in place of the Burnt Umber. French Ultramarine is quite transparent, and Ivory Black sufficiently so. It worked out that because so much of the shirt was in deep shadow, the glaze enhanced the colors in just such a way that I was able to finish the shirt by only painting into the few areas on both side where it was lit. I was so pleased with the result that I decided to try and achieve a similar result with the pants by glazing with a mixture of Raw Umber and Ivory black. The “overpainting” was a little more involved than the shirt, mostly because the pants are lighter and showed more detail and color variation, but having the glaze start out closer to the hue of the final color pass still made things much simpler.
With the flesh tones, I found that I had more control painting directly onto the underpainting with no glaze layer at all, although I did oil (paint) in the deepest shadows very lightly to bring the blacks back to their true values before I started. For the hair, I used a very light glaze layer of Ivory Black and Raw Umber on the right side, warmed just a bit with a touch of Burnt Sienna. As with the shirt and pants, the deepening of the darker colors with the glaze saves a lot of re-painting in the hair, and made working in the highlights and detailed shadows a lot easier.
I got a pretty good photo of the painting at this stage, in spite of the various states of dryness and high variation in surface sheen.
This is a pretty good representation of how this fun little project wrapped up. (I’ll post a better image once I make my final adjustments and get a coat of varnish on the painting.) It has just the right feeling to it, I think – a good portrayal of how exciting and riveting a good book can be. This young man is on an adventure!
To see the final images of this painting, please proceed to the final step.
To go back to Part Two of the underpainting/overpainting sequence, please click here.