As you can see from my previous posts, I do like a bit of photography, however, I’ve recently been trying my hand at painting.
Now when I say ‘painting’, I don’t mean actual ‘paint’ – let me explain.
I’ve been using Sketchbook Pro, along with a drawing tablet, to create these pictures on my computer. This software allows me to use a variety of materials, including pencils, brushes, charcoal, pastels and airbrush as well as a wealth of options including layers, variable opacity, locked transparencies, etc. This isn’t one of those things where you just take a photo, hit a button and hey presto, you’ve got a painting. These pictures have each taken hours to achieve.
I have done some drawing before, but I am very much a beginner at this, but I hope you can see some improvement through them all.
I did this, Self-Portrait, a couple of years ago, just playing really, it’s a bit abstract but I quite like it – my wife hates it.
I used the same technique, and more than a pinch of satire, for this portrait of Donald Trump. I like the way it shows the cracks in the façade – I’m definitely not a fan.
Continuing the theme of dangerous despots, I turned to our very own Nigel Farage.
I used the layers option to add the crumbling union jack background – not happy with Brexit, but quite happy with this.
To complete the triptych I moved onto Vladimir Putin.
I used various effects to create the bloodstained Russian flag behind him.
Self-Portrait. I tried to do a happier, brighter me – my wife prefers this one.
My son, Elliott. I’m quite pleased with the stylised look but it could be more polished. Instead of a neutral colour behind the blocks (cracks), I tried to match them to the actual shades of the picture.
Desperate Man. I did a rough version of this one and then worked out how to refine the drawing with smoother lines. I kept the rough version though, just visible under the surface, to try and illustrate the torment inside him.
My wife, Clare. I struggled with this for a while as the ‘blocky’ look I use didn’t seem to work well for a woman’s face, not very flattering.
In the end, I worked at removing the gaps between the colours and adding some polish with the airbrush.
Winona Ryder. Thought it would be interesting to try a monochrome image and see if the style still worked. Developed the airbrushing a bit more.
Monica Belucci. Still developing my style, more polished this time as I’m getting more confident with the techniques.
Well, that’s my progress so far, I’ve learnt a lot along the way but I’m sure there’s still more to get my head around yet. My aim is to try and improve to the point where I can produce a portrait I’d be happy to put on the wall – one day, one day.
I hope you like them and if you’d like to be a subject, please let me know.