Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dragon Oil Painting

I have been working on this particular oil painting off and on for about a year now, and I figured that I'd post the progress pictures here to illustrate the process I use for my paintings.

I will generally sketch out what I am going to paint before I start, first by dividing the canvas into thirds in both horizontal and vertical directions. The sketch also helps me plan my composition before I start with the actual painting process. I stream my paintings pretty regularly on my Livestream channel, but this is a good way to log and record my actual methods for future reference.

The subject matter is going to be a pair of dragons, exchanging vows under a full moon, with a lightening storm in the background.

Here we have the background roughed in. The lighting is being defined, and shadows planned out. The dragons have not really been worked on at this point, as I was concentrating mainly on getting the setting started before I put any paint to the subjects.

Now I've done work to the actual dragons in the piece. At this point I also noticed that there were several glaring anatomy errors on the male dragon, which I was having a hard time correcting initially. The scaling work has been begun on the male, and the female has had her colors roughed in and the lighting.

Colors being used are: Payne's Grey, Ultramarine Blue, Titanium White, Indian Red, and Cadmium Red. Windsor & Newton Water-mixable oil colors.

These paints are awesome by the way. They clean up with soap/water/brush cleaner and don't stink. Which makes them ideal for indoor work, or if you have pets/small children who can't tolerate fumes.

Here we have anatomy errors fixed. The male's horns and back sails have been painted in and refined, as well as his scaling. He is still not finished however, as I will be returning to him at a later time once I get the female up to the same level, and the far background completely worked.

This last photo brings us current with the progress of the painting. I spent an evening on Live-stream detailing the female, her back sail, horns, wings and scales are all painted in now, and are about the same level of detail as the male dragon. The next step from here will be to work the background fully, detailing in the clouds, rocks and the moon/sky.

The piece is starting to look much more refined and finished. But there is still a great deal of work left. At this point I have probably invested about 35 hours of work into this one painting. And I have about that much left to finish it completely.

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