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17 June 2009

Minor tweaks=big changes

Art gazing study 12X16 NFS

Progress 2
I'm always amazed at how the tiniest stroke results in huge changes on portraits. The bottom progress shot shows that I darkened her chin today and made it a little smaller. I lightened around her eyes and took the arch out of her eyebrows, and repainted her mouth fifteen times. All while trying to get rid of a German Shepard interloper who spent hours tramping through my garden, peeing on everything. He's completely untrained and wearing no ID. No one has reported him missing to the general store or the library. I tried setting my old dog out to chase him off but that didn't work. The GS is completely lacking in social sensibilities and has no idea where to go. I also had to rescue a garter snake today. I had laid some bird netting over my strawberry patch because something had been snagging the berries before they ever have a chance to ripen. Not a red one in sight and it's June 17th! The snake had managed to catch itself up in the netting. I did not look forward to cutting the netting away from it until I looked it up online and learned that Garter snakes eat SLUGS and rodents. That changed my attitude. The snakes are my best friends now.

Um. Back to the portrait. On the top version, which I declare FINISHED, I lightened even more around her eyes.

Thanks for hanging in there for the diatribe.......

12 comments:

Caio Fernandes said...

for a so longtime i didnt visited your blog , i saw i missed a lot of great things.
and yes , you are right about the litle things , huge changes. it is always nice to see works in progress made by people that know what they 're doing.

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

thank you Caio. I like your portraits very much. Very evocative.

Jill Berry said...

Sounds like you had a busy day and still finished this amazing portrait. I like the cool colors of her top and eyes interacting with the warm tones. Is it your daughter?

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

thanks, Jill. It is my daughter.

Casey said...

I look old, then sick, then young and vibrant! good job, Mom :) little changes go a long way

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

Well on the first one I thought you looked kind of angry. Mean even. Then the second and third shouldn't show such a difference in temperature. I think that was from the time of day. The actual color probably falls in between the progress 2 and the Final. But the biggest difference came from softening the edges of the eyes, I think. And reducing contrast overall. Also, I activated the orbicularis oris a bit more to make it look like you might smile. :) You are my favorite model.

loriann said...

Looks great Dale. I really like your limited complementary palette-orange/blue-beautifully understated.

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

thanks Loriann, I wish I could say it was a decision I made before I started. :)
Well, I could say it, couldn't I. Like when playing pool and a ball you weren't trying for goes in on crazy luck. You say, "Only way I could see it." and try not to let on.....

Melanie Sherman said...

Bravo. Great painting. Intriguing subject. I'd also like to comment on the environment surrounding the completion of the painting. I wish you had gotten a picture of the snake caught in the netting. Would love to see a picture of the German Shepard, too.

Your blog is oh, so much more interesting than a mere display of finished pieces. It is almost like a reality show. (I meant that in a good way, but it gave me the shivers when I read it back) Good job.

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

Thank you, Melanie. Next time I'll get a picture of the wildlife. But actually, you should talk.......

Connie said...

Lovely painting Dale! Also enjoyed (I think) the bit about the snake, but if they eat mice etc., I'm all for 'em! Anyway, I love the portrait - beautiful model, beautiful painting!

Dale Sherman Blodget said...

Thank you, Connie, and I'll pass on the comment to the beautiful model. :)