The Lioness

Very often when I am getting ready to start a longer session of working on an illustration project I will do a small, quick painting to loosen up and relax. The following images show a start to finish piece that was completed recently. The first image shows the drawing on canvas with a tone of color applied.

The second image shows the painting about half way done. I've been working hard at trying to loosen up my paint application and trying to avoid nitpicking on every little detail.

Here is the final image with the background colors applied. The last details are added into the face here to try and focus on the content expression of the lioness.

Peregrine Falcons

Here are some in progress detail images of a new painting. This is part of my Hand of Man series. This work shows a mated couple of peregrine falcons who have roosted on Cleveland's Terminal Tower skyscraper. They have been living there for several years and have hatched several more falcons over the years.

Pencil sketch of the male falcon.

Pencil sketch of the male falcon.

Washing in some basic colors on top of the pencil sketch.

Washing in some basic colors on top of the pencil sketch.

Painting Reason

Here are a few images showing my process through the final I Robot: Reason painting. In this specific case, I tried something a little different than my usual approach. I've started to have my pencil sketches scanned and printed directly onto canvas. This has saved me a good amount of time. I'm not having to transfer my final pencil sketch by hand. I previously would either use a sheet of graphite paper to hand trace the drawing or I would project the image onto the canvas and retrace. Either way was time consuming and I wouldn't get all the details that are in my final pencils. This new process saves me time and I have an exact copy of my drawing on the canvas. In this case, I had my digital value study printed onto the canvas. I'm not sure I will continue transferring the value study because I did lose some of the detail from the drawing.

Once I stretch my canvas onto a board I will apply a thin wash of color to give me a middle value base to work from. I still did the wash first even though I had the grey values on the canvas. I felt the surface needed an oil base so I did the wash with a mixture of ultramarine blue and burnt umber. I find this combination to give me a nice neutral base that I can shift cooler or warmer as needed. For this painting I added dioxazine purple to the washes. This is under the area of the light source. I placed the complementary color to try and activate the yellow paint by having some of the purple show through.

I have been trying to loosen up with my paint application. The difference is visible in this piece if you compare it to the Secret of Cavern's Keep or Cloudskimmer artwork. I have also started working on the main figure here before painting in the whole background. I'm hoping that by having the important elements with a full range of values that I will be able to soften up the values in the background on the less important elements.

This last image shows the finished painting still taped on the board. I will usually let the piece rest for a couple of days like this. I get the chance to review it and maybe add in some minor adjustments before pulling it off the board.