Paint a Portrait You Can Be Proud Of

Portrait - Painting from Photos

Closeup of Portrait - ©2009 Jacobson

Painting from Photos

Today you are painting a portrait from photos.

The project is to use the photos supplied and create an exciting portrait from photos. You’ll be using today’s electronic and digital tools. The Wacom® Cintique touch/pressure sensitive monitor. Paint with digital paints using Corel Painter 11

You are doing a portrait painting in the ultimate digital art studio.

Start each portrait in a similar way, but you’ll never use the same process twice.

Portrait painting or any painting from photos is always an event, a challenge and an exploration. It is very different than having the person or subject right there with you. The challenge is for you to feel like the person(s) is right there!

When you begin to talk to the photos, you know they are there.


Step 1 – Composition & Color Correction

 

Painting from Photos

Original Photo

The original photo was taken from a very high perspective. Here comes the challenge.

Using Adobe Photoshop…

Create a better composition.

You can chose to crop in much closer in order to capture the personality of the two adorable sisters.

Spend your time exploring different compositions.

Do color correcting and use colors that will inspire you to paint.

As the artist you must be inspired. You’ll get there if you keep exploring.


Step 2 – The Cropped Image

Painting from Photos - original photo
Cropped Image


How do you decide where to crop?

You love their little feet in the photo, but that just won’t work.Why won’t it work? …Because it’s their hair and eyes that should be the focus.

Sometimes you have to give up what you love, to be able to create a focus. After all…this is a portrait painting.

At this stage you have a color corrected and cropped image.

Save the composition.

You are now ready to paint using Corel Painter11.

Step 3 – The Block-in

Portrait Painting - Beginning
The block-in


The composition is cropped one more time. It is now Square.

You’re at the block-in stage.

Using Corel Paintier 11 play around with oil paint, acrylic paint and pastels.

Begin painting background colors that inspire you.

Now that you’ve changed that white canvas to a color-filled piece, roughly block-in the two little figures.

4 – Details

The block-in
The block-in


From the block in stage, you work a little at a time, and refine shapes.

No details yet, just keep refining shapes and values of tone (light, dark, midtone)

  • Keep painting
  • Move around the canvas
  • Refine the edges
  • When every shape (eyes are a shape, mouth is a shape, nose is a shape) is there (painted in)…
  • refine the details.

Just as you did with the shapes, keep moving around. You are painting details, all around the canvas.


Step 5- Portrait Painting from Photos – Completed

About 14 hours after the block-in stage, the final decision… It’s completed … it’s done!

And now you have, the perfect portrait painting.

Live with your painting for a few days, then look again. Refine any small details that  appear.

When you know you are proud of it, you are ready to print.

The painting is printed on a 20″ x 20″ canvas.

If you don’t want to paint your own portrait, check-out having one painted for you.


Portrait Painting

J&J Portrait 20"x20" ©2008 Jackie Jacobson

Closeup
Closeup

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