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I'm a professional award winning Portrait artist from NSW Australia.

Not just a likeness- portraits with Life!
I bring your photos to life in paintings that will touch your heart!

A photo freezes a moment while a painting melts hearts.

Capture a moment in their life and
keep it alive in an Heirloom Portrait !

"Your portraits capture more life than a photo ever could!"

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Have me create a special portrait just for you!.
Supply the photos and then plan the great unveiling!

I have original animal and landscape artworks available for sale on my website.

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

One of my portraits has won an award at the 2015 Wollombi Emerging Artists Awards.

My portrait 'Homeward Bound" Just won a merit award in the 2015 Wollombi Emerging Artists awards!
Well so far it's won a 1st prize and now an award.
To me I'm not really an emerging artist as I've been around for 17 years but the awards are open for any artists that haven't had a solo exhibition in a regional gallery.
I only create one painting a year other than commissions ( and practise portraits at the group) so that's not bad!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

The creation of Alex's memorial portrait

 Memorial portrait of Alex
30 x 40cms
Oil on gallery wrap canvas
" It's beautiful. You got her nose etc just perfect!!! Looks more like Alex than the photo!!! Tyler loves it too! So natural and Alex.
Makes me teary!!!

The portraits creation-
Alex was 23 when she was killed in a car accident in Australia shortly after returning from overseas.
Lanise is having me create a portrait to remember her in better times. 
I drew a sketch for her portrait today  but we have decided to use another photo so I'll draw another tomorrow. Below is the first photo I drew .
I was initially going to use this video still photo which really captures her character  but it was just too blurry.  I was guessing with her eye shape and smile and something just wasn't right in the sketch.
We were going to use extra photos to help but especially with people you have to be so accurate to capture them and a clear photo makes that so much easier. If I can see the shape of their eyes / mouth etc I can get a much better portrait.

 Lovely but not clear enough.
We decided to use this sharper photo and I would open her eyes more.

  It's appropriate that I am starting the portrait this week as I just found out it would have been her birthday this week. Her birthday was the day after mine!
  I've started the acrylic underpainting-

 Lanise said she liked a background I'd used in a previous portrait so I did a version of this in Alex's. I kept it a little subtle so it didn't overwhelm her.

Starting to do the tones on her face ( shades of darks and lights).
The way the light hits her face is what builds up her face structure and gives a likeness. It is often very subtle especially in younger women without wrinkles and has to be correct or you don't get a likeness. At this stage it's only rough as I know I will be coming back over with Oil and refining. Acrylic can give harsh edges but Oil gives lovely soft ones.

 Looking a bit spooky here with the red eyes and green lips! lol's. 
I knew how they would change as I progressed but as  I posted an early pic on FB I warned Lanise saying not to worry as she would change!

 Here I am happy enough to decide to change to Oil. I posted this stage with B +W version on my FB page.
If you get the tones right you can get away with almost any colours. Her mouth and eyes are still 'raw' and unfinished but I know they will be altered with Oil so I'm not worried.

 B + W version of  the earlier stage

 Now to the oil . 
The first thing I do is get rid of those evil eyes! This is still a bit rough but I ended up not changing them that much. 
Sometimes you just get it early on and to fiddle would lose something.

 Filling in the tones of her face-
 I want the portrait to read naturally from a distance but be interesting close up just not all boring pinks and creams. This is where I use the knowledge gained from painting from life - the colours my eyes can see in flesh. You can tell an artist who only works from photos as their work  often looks cutout with pasty pink and cream flesh tones.
Using more colours brings my portraits to life and makes them look much more realistic.
Eyes and mouth roughly done although I haven't painted her teeth. 
Teeth need to be subtle or can look garish and cartoonish. 


Here I've painted her mouth although I will be refining things more as I go along. 
I've painted the background it's final colour so I can  adjust the rest of the portrait to suit. It tends to be hard to photograph with a sheen so I have to take the photos from a bit of an angle. The tape is to ensure she doesn't fall forward into my wet paint palette!
 I had that happen to an almost finished wet portrait once and it wasn't fun so now I take no chances.
 Starting to do her hair.

 Almost there- just need to do some work on her shirt and suggest her necklace  a little more. I want the portrait to be alive and fresh and not overworked and tight.

Below-  Finished!