Thursday, July 27, 2006

This is the last Freebie

This is the last painting I give away, at least for now. It is a wedding present to (and portrait of) my friend Howie Levine and his wife, Linda. I actually painted it from a previously taken photo, so he was unaware he was being painted until the portrait itself was presented. Which made for some considerable giggling at one point in the proceedings.

Working from an existing photo is not my favorite approach to portraiture, however. I much prefer the one-on-one experience of photographing the subject. The bonding that goes on during that session carries over into the painting.

Howie's painting started life looking like this:

At one point, it looked like this:

For the life of me, I couldn't get the eye on the left side of the picture to work. I tried and tried--dripping, manipulating the paint with the edge of my stick, pushing it around with my finger--everything short of picking up a paintbrush...and nothing worked. Finally, in frustration, I took the flat end of one of those stirring sticks they give you when you buy housepaint and scraped the still-wet paint into the black halo that now encircles his eye. And bang, it was done. It ended up looking like this:

They seem pleased with the result.


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