Sunday, 17 May 2009

Portraits from life - A wonderful Experience!

Last Friday I visited the local retirement village to spend time with some of the residence. I took my pastel pencils, canson drawing paper, and had a really lovely time .

This lady to our left is Melva. She was so happy to have her portrait drawn, she even slipped away before hand to put some lippy on :)

Using a soft grey Canson paper, indian red pastel pencil for the darks and a white for highlights.

Joycie was all comfy near the warmth of the window reading her book, her face moving from left to right with each page she read.

I chatted with her about the story she was reading and about her life as I sat and drew her portrait.


Mary is such a sweet lady with warm eyes and a big smile. As I started to draw her she told me she was very tired and might not be able to stay away. "That's fine" I told her as I had a smile to myself at how gorgeous these ladies are.
I love this drawing of Mary, it captures so much character , a beautiful lady...

I look forwards to my Friday afternoons with the residence from the Nursing home. They tell me there are 50 all together and they all want a portrait done :) So I am in for a lots of drawing practise and some great conversation with people who we should spend time with a whole lot more!!!

Tuesday, 12 May 2009


This is Johnny, a fellow portrait artist who is from brentwood , TN, USA.

He and I have done a portrait swap!
Johnny had finished mine earlier in the year, so it was about time I started his portrait.
Portrait swaps are great fun, and you end up with a portrait of yourself :)

Johnnys Website
This is an oil 12x16" painted on a canvas covered board. I tried a new palette for the skin tones and am really happy with how this is turning out!

My palette for the skin tones ;
Cad Red, Burnt Sienna, Prussian Blue , Raw Umber, Titanium White, Italian Pink and small amounts of Alizarin Crimson and Terre Verte.

Friday, 8 May 2009


Reflections finished! She had a makeover last week, giving her some depth , although I am not sure whether to add more warmth to her face or not. I quite like the cool tones as it suggest a winters afternoon as she is snuggled up in her shawl.

This painting is for sale
plus postage.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

"SELAH" painted a second time...

A friend of mine wanted "Selah"
to send to his Fiance for mothers day.
This time a soft grey matte finished her off.
here she is, sealed in plastic ready to send.
Charcoal ,white pastel and a range of grey pastels were used.
Drawn on a new pastel paper by an Aussie company called Art tec. I found this paper quite good to draw on. It has a textured surface for the pastel to hold onto.

The house is a mess, but this is the result ,lol....

After pepairing my board with gesso, I toned it with a wash of terre verte and turpenoid. I have my reference picture and then proceed to draw the portrait, brush in hand with thinned down Terre Verte.
I am really stretching myself here, wanting to become much more loose with my style and not so boring with my portraits.

I really love the loose impressionistic style, with a touch of realism. Something I think you can only achieve with excellent drawing skills.
The under painting gives me a solid start to work on.

So yes, I did spend the entire afternoon painting and enjoying myself.

She still needs some eye work, as the terre verte under-drawing is showing,
and I am sure the shadows in her face need to be darkened.
Best thing to do is let this lady dry and sit for a few days...

While I do this housework