Portrait and Figure Painting

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An Imaginary Realm | The Inventive Pastels of Jane Lewis

"The figures in Jane Lewis’ paintings," writes John Parks, "look out at us from a becalmed, strange and curiously timeless world. Rendered impeccably in subtly shifting tones and hues, the paintings present characters dressed in improbable costumes that seem to belong to a bygone, classical age.

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Watercolor Portrait Demo: LeAnn | Mario A. Robinson

Esteemed portrait and figure painter Mario A. Robinson uses a monochromatic block-in to achieve  light, medium and dark skin tones. Follow along as he creates a medium skin tone for his watercolor portrait of LeAnn: I painted LeAnn using a cool light to illuminate the subject. The light cooled the warm tones of the skin, as well...

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Stephen Zhang Watercolor Portraits: A Brush With Everyday Life

Loose, broad brushstrokes and fresh color add energy and import to Stephen Zhang’s watercolor sketches and watercolor portraits of common men and women in everyday pursuits. He combines transparent washes of vibrant, flowing color and rich, complex glazes. The result? A realistic depiction that retains a fresh, spontaneous quality. “I’ve always been drawn to human figures for the...

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Cesar Santos on Classical Oil Portraits

Once the proportions look good, I start adding more information. I find the eye sockets, the nose and the rest of the features. My advice: If you have to put some value down to see proportion, better do it, but don’t fall into shading or rendering. Remember, this stage is to facilitate the painting’s...