Wednesday, February 12, 2014
My cat, Alan, is the subject of this painting. He was relaxing in the sun on the living room floor when I snapped the photo I used for this painting. I show here the steps I go through when painting. First, I tone my canvas, in this care, with Gamblin's Perylene Red. Once the canvas is dry I work out the composition. I draw the layout with a brush in raw umber and turpinoid. I use turpinoid because it is easy to wipe out what I do not like as the drawing progresses. Once I am satisfied with the brush drawing I let the painting dry. Even when dry I can go back in with turpinoid to make changes to the composition if needed. It took about 3 hours go get the brush drawing where I wanted it. Once this stage was dry I painted in color. As you can see I started with Alan's face. When I have a good start on the face I go directly to the eyes. I spent a lot of time getting the eyes correct. The viewer naturally is drawn to the subjects eyes so that is where I put the most detail. After the eyes are complete I paint the body. I spend much less time on the body and I don't put a lot of detail in Alan's stripes. The subject of this painting is the cat's paws and claws so I have made them a bit bigger than normal to emphasize them. The rest of the painting is support for the main subject and, therefore, I painted it with less emphasis.