I was inspired today from a video by Max Ginsburg where he paints a portrait of a model. This led to me trying my hand at my own portrait sketch but with much less success.
I haven’t done a portrait in oil for a long time so I’m a bit out of practice here so it’s good that I get back into it today. Honestly I need to do a portrait at least once a week to keep in practice.
I chose an image from New Masters Academy. The have a ton of images of models doing expressions, most of which are exaggerated expressions but I was more interested in the very subtle nuances of the face. Much like a portrait by Rembrandt the models don’t have extreme expressions but the emotion is profoundly deep and present.
After getting the basic shape of the head done I focused on the eye and spent a lot of time getting it as accurate as I could. After about an hour and a half of painting I realized that if I wanted to get the same detail and accuracy in the rest of the head I would need about 9 hours on this painting. Honestly my motivation in doing this portrait would not exceed more than 2 hours at this point so I switched focus to just trying to get the general planes of the face placed.
If I had spent a few more hours on this painting I could have completed something much better but I was more concerned with the start of this portrait. I feel that my skills could be better served by getting a clear process in place for starting a portrait rather than working on rendering high detail.