Tag: media testing

Portrait Media Testing – Oil Painting Reflection

For this media test on oil paints, we painted a grayscale of our face. We first took a selfie and gridded the printout. We then gridded the canvas the same way and began sketching out our face by observing a reference photo.

This media test taught me how to properly wash the brushes by using the oil thinner. This also gave me a chance to see the difference between acrylic paint and oil paint, which helped me determine which media I would use for my final piece.

Oil paint is the best media to use when drawing realistic pieces. Since its oil-based, it dries slowly and allows to create a smooth texture and transition between values and colors.

The most frustrating quality of oil paints is that it takes a long time to dry; so when I was trying to adjust the values, the color underneath would often come through the color I painted on top. The way I dealt with this problem was to use a tissue to wipe off the layer of paint. This allowed me to change the values and colors easily.

When using oil paint, I tend to over blend and make one area the same shade, so a technique I would like to improve and learn to do is to show the different values while maintaining and smoother transition. During this media testing, I was thinking of Kehinde Wile and tried to paint smooth value transitions to recreate his style of making the figure’s skin look as if it was glowing.


Portrait Media Testing – Acrylic Painting Reflection

To prepare ourselves for the final portrait piece, we did media testing on acrylic paint. We first took a selfie and edited it so there were distinct values. Then we made our canvas which was a print out of the picture that was glued and sealed onto a piece of cardboard. Then we painted on top the photo using a reference photo.

During this media test, I learned that thinning out the paint using water makes the blending process between different values easier. Another technique was to use complementary colors rather than black to paint the shadows.

When painting, the most frustrating part was blending out the paint, especially when the paint has already dried. Usually, I would paint using oil paint which creates smooth transitions between values very easily, so blending acrylic paint was challenging. I solved this problem by adding water to thin out the concentration, or mixing different variations of values of the same color, and placing them next to each other.

By looking at other artists, such as Jenny Saville and Anna Bocek, I would like to learn how they maintain 3Dness of a figure without blending out the paint. I would also like to learn how they create the effortless effect when painting figures. I tried to replicate this by painting with loose brush strokes and using cool colors in the shadows and warm colors for the highlights.

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