Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Leonardo DeCaprio As Gatsby: Part VIII

Another in the series of blog entries in which I describe the process I am using to create an oversized portrait.

Square C1R3

Square C1R3, the lower right side of Gatsby’s mouth and face, actually the left side since I reversed DiCaprio’s head in Photoshop. This entire side of the head (Painting right/viewer left)is more detailed than the other side, though in order to make the two sides of the painting work together, I have begun to work a bit more detail into the other. Also I am working some of the green and blue from the viewer's right side into the left side. Additionally, looking at the thumbnail images on my desktop I realize that I must lighten an area to the left of the mouth in order to emphasize the lift of flesh in Gatsby’s smile.

One viewer made the comment, “It's amazing how much color goes into the painting of a face!” * I hadn’t really thought about the color since I made the color changes in the original small sketch on Photoshop. The changes were based on the fact that beneath the surface color of human flesh there is a variously colored blue-green and green layer. It is especially helpful to expose that layer more completely in the shadowed areas of the portrait one is creating in order to make the contours of the face recede. The masters knew this and often painted such a layer before painting the flesh colors over and/ or interspersing layers of blue and green within the layers of more natural color. It took the Impressionists and the Post Impressionists to expose this trick and paint intense blue and green passages of paint on the surface of the “fleshscape.” *2 It is interesting to note that I ended up with most of the blue and green on the left (sinister) side of DiCaprio’s visage, though (due to my reversal of his image) it is actually his right side.

Over all, I’m happy with this square (C1R3), and I think the changes I make in the future will be minimal, just the one noted above, and those necessary to make color passages line up exactly across the panel borders.


*Grant, Betsy, in Leonardo DiCaprio As Gatsby: Part VII, Posted 11:09 AM EDT, Friday, 09/21/13, viewed 10:21 AM EDT, Wednesday, September 25, 2013.

*2 Fleshscape is a word of my own making. I’m sure others have done so before me.

1 comment:

Man and Van said...

Nice art. Keep doing it.