Painting the Luminous Portrait with Joshua LaRock
Capturing a likeness is among the most elusive yet emotionally satisfying of artistic endeavors and a good drawing is undoubtedly the most critical component in achieving a good result. In this 4 day workshop Joshua will walk students through the steps necessary to create a luminous, indirect portrait painting from life, beginning with a drawing in graphite and white chalk. From Joshua: My demonstration and critiques will center around the principles of form and how to understand and achieve the illusion of three-dimensions. By better understanding the importance of form the student will gain new insight into values, structure, expression and indeed, color. Each morning session will begin with a thorough portrait demonstration from the model including a dialogue of all key concepts, while the afternoon will focus on personal critiques as you create your own painting. We will progress each day, working on the same pose, through a clear method which you will be able to easily apply to your own work. The first day will begin with the block-in, or line drawing, including a discussion of both two and three dimensional conception and problem-solving strategies. With a solid start, we will move on to an in-depth investigation of the portrait’s forms and large value relationship, as well as the practical and conceptual techniques of modeling which can often be counter-intuitive. The drawing will be transferred to canvas. On the second day we will begin the first of three layers of paint, one each day. I will be teaching the the indirect approach to oil painting which is distinct from the alla-prima, or wet-in-wet, method in that it is done in layers and can therefore achieve wonderful and subtle effects by the use of semi-transparent veils of paint. The first layer consists of a thin neutralized underpainting to establish large value relationships. The second is a slightly thicker layer where the form is built up and more color context is added. And finally, a refining pass with a discussion of glazing and scumbling will be applied the third day. Day 1: Block-in drawing – lighting, 2 dimensional vs 3 dimensional concepts. Render drawing in graphite focusing on form and structure. Transfer to canvas. Day 2: Underpainting – discuss various methods, intro to color space – hue/value/chroma Day 3: Building up form – lighter lights, darker darks, with more color context. Anticipate final layer. Day 4: Finishing – Polishing and refining by glazing and scumbling; consider edges.