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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!

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Vanessa.



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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Creating the fun demo painting of Aphrodite the gorgeous Arab




 I painted this demo at Lambton Park on Sunday when I was at the Hunter Arts bazaar. I didn't get as much done as usual as I was really busy and talked heaps!
 As this painting isn't a commission I'm being a bit more creative and going for more of a feeling than an exact likeness.
( Although if you'd like something a bit different and have some good action photos or an unusual angle they can make a stunning portrait!)

Here are the original inspiring photos of the arab mare Aphrodites - 
Thanks for letting me use them  Renee!


I played around for quite a while before I came up with this idea. 
I've got rid of the background , flipped one of the photos and I will take off her halter and lungeline.
 I like to have the photo in B + W as if it's in colour I find I start to blindly copy the photos colours . As photos can't capture all the colours your eye can see if you copy the photos colours you start at a disadvantage. With this one I'm being more adventurous than if it was a commission and choosing colours for best effect.

Early stages of sketching the idea. I wanted to make sure it fitted on the canvas.
Much as I loved this one below I could see that the head at the back was larger than the one in front so I had to make the front one larger or the rear one would dominate. I want the rear horse to be more of a ghost image to add to the feeling and not distract.



 Ok the heads are more the same size now and I've roughly got them done. The enlarged reference photo isn't very clear  so I can't see her head structure very well.
It doesn't matter as much here as it's not a commissioned portrait.
The paper is white at this stage it's just a colour caste in the photo.

This is the stage I got to before I went to the event.I would have liked to do the acrylic underwashes there but I need to lay it flat to do them and the paint would have dried too fast outdoor.
 Here they are at the event and I'm starting to come in and do the tonal underpainting on both horses ( both are Aphrodites)..


I've now got them underpainted and it's time to start doing the Oil paint over the top.This is the fun part!
 
 Starting on the dark accents in the front horses head and I've also roughly suggested the blue stripe in the background. This will be refined later.


Doing a bit of the in between tones / shades on her face. This is what gives her head the structure and reality. 


Starting to come together! I love the glow and how the front horse comes forward.



 A bit further along building up the tones.
 Below - closeup


This is where I got up to at the end of the day. I want to darken the background stripe, add highlight dapples on the front horse and refine her face a little plus a few more darks. I'll also refine the rear one a  little hopefully without losing the lovely oomph and glow it has!
I'm not sure when I'll get around to finishing it off but will post it when I do.

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