Maggie has sent me the painting she is doing of her Daughter in Law’s Dog and has asked for help. Maggie writes:
“As you can see the photo I have taken it from is very black with only a part of his face lit but I want more of him lit so I have tried to change the light so that you can see him clearer. My problem is I don’t know if it is OK. I thought I had made his right side darker until I started to put in background and now it doesn’t really look darker at all. I haven’t finished the background and I don’t want to until I’m sure of the dog. If I do have to darken parts could you help with the colours I should use?”
This is a very ambitious painting and I admire Maggie fro even attempting it. There are a few pointers I can suggest that will help to improve the picture. First of all, apart from the nose, which I shall deal with later, I love the way that Maggie has produced the hair it is very lifelike. The main problem is the shading so lets deal with that first. All the areas indicated by the red and gold arrows in the photo must be copied to the painting. I would use a colour like 175 then use a mid or a light tone grey on top of the 175 to bring back the light hair tone. Notice that the tail looks like it is sticking out of the side of the head. This is due to the fact that there is no separation in shading (gold arrow). The nose is too narrow and will have to be widened to the point of the black arrow on the painting above.
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