Friday, December 9, 2011

How to paint a portrait

Yesterday I showed you how I paint my caricatures. Today I show you how I paint my portraits.

The video above is a very quick 'sketch' rather than one of my more detailed paintings. My detailed portraits can take up to 40 hours or more to complete. Every hair is painstakingly painted by hand...there are absolutely no photo manipulations, scans, trickery...all my work is produced by hand!

I usually start painting a portrait with a black (or dark grey) background and white outline. I find this easier to work with than having a black outline. It's therefore strange that I prefer a black outline on my caricature work! However, the two styles are very different so it is only right that I have a different approach to each.

After the initial outline I will redefine the outline and smooth it out a little. At this stage the portrait is still a very rough sketch.

I prefer to work in B&W (greyscale) and build up layer after layer of shading. I use a soft brush with fairly light strokes, ensuring I blend the various shades.

The next stage is to add some details to the face i.e. the eyes, mouth, nose etc.

The eyes of the portrait are extremely important and I find myself revisiting this are of the painting over and over again.

Once the majority of the facial detail has been completed I will smooth out the initial outlines...often erasing them totally or blending them into the face.

Once the black and white base shading is completed it is time to start adding colour to the portrait. The video above does not show this stage but it is fairly quick as the majority of the painting is completed during the black and white stage.

If you would like to commission your own caricature or portrait then please feel free to contact me or visit my website at

My work is receiving international recognition with many of the top companies seeking my work.

Below are just a few of the 1000s of pieces of art I have completed.

I have always wanted to complete a portrait of Marilyn and managed to get this one finished a couple of months ago.

Here it is hanging in one of my rooms at room.

With the latest release of the Twilight movies I thought it only fitting that I complete a portrait of one of the cast.

This portrait has received a lot of recognition on various sites including a coveted 'Featured Portrait of the Month' award.

You can view the portrait at the world famous Eumundi Market every Saturday.

No comments:

Post a Comment