"The Dragon's Keeper" started as a very very ambitious idea for me. I was pretty scared because I wanted to add elements I was not comfortable with and take a chance on a different composition. Of course, i'm used to single character portraits and no backgrounds, so it was a big and scary picture for me!
The sketch is something I'm honestly going to frame. I loved it so much! You can check the sketch, I had it stored in a box because we moved to a house a couple months ago.
When facing the moment where I had to start transferring it to the canvas panel, I was seriously thinking on just going full pencil shading on it, I have a big fear of oil painting because I've faced lots of disasters when working on them. It might have to do with the fact that I lose the pencil marks under the layers of oil paint or the fact that I get too excited and start this "tunnel-vision" stage where I work work work and in the end I repent! It happened like 3 times this with this pair!
I'm too ashamed to post the big mistakes, after the first attempt, I even changed her face. I liked the expression, but her head came up too big =( The next time I did have something really interesting, but oh yeah! I over worked it and it turned to be a very very awful attempt to make a human face.
(I can't believe I didn't continue with this option... it was beauuutiful and I messed it up and couldn't get her to look like it again T.T)
During all this process, one of my best friends and one of the artists I incredibly admire, Tamisery , gave me some pointers and helped me to develop a bit more the idea. As well as revisions with colors, composition and lots of details. I hope i can paint like her someday T.T She and her husband are the most amazing and talented people and they always find the time to help me with my art.
And also, my husband, he was the one who gave me the hugs I needed when frustration was overwhelming me. He knows that I want to be good, but I somehow have troubles understanding theory and I'm so tired of making mistakes that not doing a nice painting or piece really really shakes me completely. He's the one that helped me with a more commercial-type-of-client perspective. Of course, I know this is not his cup of tea, but he made his best and helped me a lot along the way with the colors and situation.
Well, after almost losing my mind with this, I have to admit that I learned LOTS !!!
- I used a pattern style of transfer from sketch to board. I copied the sketch on printer paper and started cutting each shape as a pattern and copied it on the board. This was helpful as I always lose proportion when doing this without any help.
- I learned bits more of human anatomy. And it is the first actual foot I ever paint that looks acceptable! (hey! I must celebrate small victories, right?)
- I painted a Dragon!!! (Hubby's favorite part)
- I learned a lot of suggesting textures on oil painting. The scales were fun to do!
- From the beginning to the end, I kept her story the same. She's not afraid of the dragon, as she's the one who's protecting him.
- It actually has a story! =D
"The Dragon's Keeper"
Oils on Canvas Panel
Purchase info directly with firstname.lastname@example.org
After reading and listening to 2 podcasts during my daily walks, I really felt more comfortable taking chances.
This podcasts are:
Create & Inspire by Aunia Kahn
Art Marketing Action by Alyson B. Stanfield (sadly, it's not updated anymore, but the podcasts that remain are sooo good!)
I hope you enjoy this blog entry, please, let me know in the comments if you have any question, or suggestion. Please, be polite! I know I'm always learning new techniques!
Have a wonderful week!
Thanks for watching!