This is the first post of a portrait of the new year and the last portrait done for the last year. I have been working with a different group as my Tuesday group decided not to meet during December because of the holiday season. The use of hats has been favored by this group. I find hats make every model look androgynous. All the hair gets tucked away. The persistent use of black hats cast some really obscuring, dark shadows. Finally, my nudging got us a model without a hat. It allowed hair to flow around her shoulders.
This is a very challenging portrait because of the tilted head. Structurally, eyes, base of nose and mouth at the meeting of upper and lower lip are at right angles to the center axis. With the tilt like this and my paper vertically oriented on the easel, it made maintaining the correct position of her features a little difficult. I managed to sneak a little pattern into this painting. Anyone who is a regular, long-term reader of my blog will know I am a sucker for pattern and color. Patterns just seem to make the piece come alive. I tend to channel Matisse and Klimt. On occasion, I will also channel Gauguin. I couldn’t emulate a better crew of artists.