I am continuing from the drawing work done in the previous exercise but I think I may have missed the point of this exercise – in that it’s supposed to be a linear figure study, which in my mind means she should be lying down! Oh well, I decided to crack on and choose the pose with my model sitting outside in a garden camping chair, where she is looking at her cell phone. This is the reference drawing:
I initially did a very light pencil drawing to ascertain the main forms and then using a wash of burnt sienna (acrylics this time), I painted in the outlines and shadows. I darkened the wash for the deeper shadows on the model’s clothing and other areas of the grass around her.
I continued to build up the background wooden fence (omitting detail as I did not want this to end up being two paintings in one) and the light green where the sunlight catches it, as well as the shadowed green grass. I laid in a light purple wash for the shadow areas on the dress and then loosely indicated with white parts of the pattern of the fabric. I drew in some of the pattern with a pencil.
I was not happy with the way I had painted the model’s arms and did a bit of correcting, also to the shadows on the face. I resisted the urge to do any further work, as this is supposed to be simple and the aim is to allow the linear aspect of the painting to dominate.
I have over worked the face and also made her chin pointy – as I didn’t wait for the underlying area to dry. I might go over it later and ‘freshen’ it up. I’m also still not happy with her arms. I would like to have another go at this exercise, after lockdown, to see if I can get a more dynamic ‘linear’ pose going on and make it more fluid, with another model. To be honest I think the first rough painted outline (burnt sienna wash) is the most interesting version of this study.
I think I’m coming to realise that I battle working ‘small’- and end up overworking or getting fiddly with bits that should be just left alone to ‘suggest’ what’s there. In my next work, I’m going to try and work larger and see if that helps with the fluidity of approach. I might also try different mediums, perhaps inks, and see if my attack is looser. I’m feeling very constricted at the moment, I think it’s a combination of being in this bloody awful lockdown situation and not having anywhere ‘large’ where I can work.
I also realised that I forgot to put in the main shadow.