Love is in the Air

Valentine's cats

My cats decided to send a quick message out to all of you this week.  Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone and thanks for all your support. We love you guys.

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One Man and his Dog

Stewart portrait blog

I was asked to do a portrait of a good friend of mine, a portrait if him and his dog.  I was very flattered that his partner asked me on the sly to paint this picture of him for his birthday/Christmas.  Obviously as this was on the sly I painted it from a photograph.  I was a little worried by the photo as it was a quick snap that someone took on their phone and so the detail and focus wasn’t as good as I would have liked.  I had a go and kept with the same dulled down colour palette from the photo which I think worked.  I also tried to keep the background in a slight blur so that you would concentrate on the portrait which I think worked too.

It’s always a little nerve racking doing a portrait of a friend as it means so much more to you as an artist to get it right,  but at the same time at least you really know them so you can tell when you’ve got it right.

It was also the first time I’ve painted a dog, and again this dog means the world to my friend so again this has to be right – scary!

I tried hard. I hope they liked it!

Donkey Work

portrait girl 1

This was another chance to do a charcoal portrait.  I did this one at school where I had the opportunity to have a model sit for me for 3 hours.  Sadly I didn’t have 3 hours as I was late!  I gave myself the challenge of drawing from a donkey.  This is a lower bench that you can sit on so that when drawing you can get very close up from underneath the model.  This makes it quite a bit harder as the angle is very difficult.  The usual way of mapping out a face completely changes here.  The nose and eyes and mouth are much closer together and all the shapes change.  Personally I really prefer portraits from this angle – there is something rather grand about the pose.  It can be really hard to get this right.  I wish I had another couple of hours on it.  I love the mood of charcoal portraits.