I used various different techniques trying to suggest the movement of Ben’s cello playing. Echoing shapes, fading out a second figure and fractured form. It was difficult to balance and learning experience, but I really enjoyed it.
It was important to me to use the colours I did because Ben described being able to see his favourite music as orange with blue shapes. It was also a good chance to try to balance a composition using complementary colours, and allowed me to paint for painting’s sake when working out the composition rather than sticking to a photo.
I’m actually lost for words, the way you’ve done the background and everything is exactly as I described how I feel when I playBen
When I met Tim I had quite a clear idea about how I should paint him, He has a very animated character and is very expressive with his hands when he talks, so i tried to make these the centre of the painting.
It was particularly difficult painting the faded out figures in Tim’s portrait as I had initially tried to achieve it through painting them in full colour then glazing them out, but it just gave a muddy, shiny effect that didn’t work at all and was ditracting so I had to rectify it by painting over using careful colour matching.
It was also tricky to resolve the poses into a composition, and took quite a few attempts. Again I found it liberating to work this out ‘live’ on the painting rather than working from photos. The colour scheme changed several times too, and seemed to slip into the theme of some of the other paintings of having a complementary colour scheme.
Aiste brought her plant with her as part of my brief of ‘what makes you you’ as she is a nature lover and it’s very important to her to be surrounded by greenery.
It was quite late when she sat for me and I had to use a spotlight in the room which made a very striking light effect and I thought it worked well with a very classical pose and a round canvas.
I used a linen canvas, which I found quite difficult as I was forced to go for a more detailed approach, although as it’s the smallest of my big portraits I thought that was the best approach.
Painting in progress
Rhea loves singing karaoke. The setting where she met me to sit was quite theatrical, with a dramatic gold curtain and purple velour sofa and Rhea performed brilliantly during the photo shoot, striking some great diva poses! I decided to glam things up some more and make Rhea into her own girl band, the microphones are from my imagination however as we had none and had to use a TV remote as stand-in!
Once again, I’ve tried to suggest movement through different paint techniques, this time trying to paint faded figures in different poses alongside a main figure. This was surprisingly difficult (as I’ve found throughout the series), and needs very carefully colour picking to work convincingly.
Edy is an absurdist musical comedian, so is a great performer and posed very naturally for photos as he would if he was on stage. He uses a large papier mache puppet that he made himself during his performances, so I am making the painting about the puppet rather than movement, and Edy is posing in it and out of it.
I still have a few challenges to overcome with this painting, but it’s progressing well.
I am going to see how many more paintings I’m able to do based on the time I have left, I’m afraid I won’t have time to finish all those I was intending to, but the exhibition is probably going to be a bit sooner than I thought. I’ll update final dates as soon as I can.