Here is the best picture I've ever painted:
What do I mean by "best"? My satisfaction here is both technical and purely artistic. On the technical side, what fun I had working on my wonderful friend's skin tone, using a lot of quinacridone red mixed with crimson, light red, and lavender for shadows. I put on wash after wash in thin layers, building up the darkness and complexity. And I was exceedingly careful--I am indeed learning to be careful, to know what to take care on, to get the details right. Check out the hair clip.
Artistically, this painting is doing everything I want my paintings to do: capturing human beauty sculpted by light. I love my friend's beautiful contemplative pose, the light caress of her fingers on her shoulder, the glints in her eyes. I will happily paint forever, trying to evoke beauty in this way.
Here's another portrait of the same model, a very dear friend of mine:
I love this one as well. The portrait is accurate. I love the velvety blue drape. This one is really all about the back, of course. Backs are so graceful.
I am happy with pretty much everything I've done this summer. Here's the most recent piece I've done:
Here too I am doing everything I want to do. The "sculpting by light" here is wonderful--my friend's hands in particular looking beautiful, carried in a way that's very evocative of her "habitus," her natural ways of moving in her body. The skin tone is as delicate as my friend's real skin is. My tools for evoking the real texture and depth of skin are approaching my dreams and goals for that purpose. Again I love the contemplative gaze.
Here is another piece of the same model:
I like this piece very much as well--although the photos I have to work from are not up to my best standard. I am still learning how to use a new camera.
Here are a couple sketches:
I am obsessively trying to paint a good painting like the one above of my friend and her fabulous back line. Still not there, but this one is OK. Finally, below, is another painting I am very fond of, particularly the tone on the fall of the model's lower back. This one I will frame and hang in my studio.
It's been a great summer for painting.