Saturday, April 26, 2008

My New Strategy

Part of the struggle of a portrait artist is not only attempting to make a portrait look like the subject, but also to find the right coloring for his or her skintone. You must know what colors to mix, what colors compliment or highlight each other, and even what colors to stay away from. Trial and error is the tactic I've been using. I've gotten pretty good at knowing what works best for certain skintones, but for others...well, let's just say that my tactic can get pricey.

I decided to try something different for my most recent portraits. I bought a book. Not just any book, a color mixing recipe book for artists. Yes, there is such a thing! This excellent resource guide is especially for portrait artists. It lists 500 color combinations, has recipes for skin for several nationalities, suggestions for eyes and even hair. Of course, not everyone is the same and allowances must be made, but for the most part the book is great!

With this new strategy, I'm not using as much paint and I have a starting point for what to use. I've also found that my work is going much faster, so now I'm able to start new projects before I've met my previous deadline. Bring on the new clients!