(WIP) Ah, city…I was just not prepared for you, today…

I came home from class today, (very) early, because I realized I was in no shape to be there.  Today was Painting; right now I’ve got all my stuff set up for working, sans water and open paints.

Yeah, I…got up at 8:10 and was out of here by 8:40.  No food, forgot medication, didn’t wash my face or shave or do my hair.  I headed off to school, carrying way too much, not prepared to deal with people (or people’s poo on the sidewalk).  I’m thinking that in the future, it would be nice to not necessarily live in an urban area.  The problem is that I would really need to live in an area with support for minorities…which would seem to link me inextricably to the city.

It would really be nice if we could set up some infrastructure so that there are public, clean, free, accessible bathrooms that one doesn’t have to have a home to use.  While we’re at it, we need some public, clean, free, accessible showers and laundromats, as well.  Health care, why not; though I’m thinking we have some free clinics, already.  Free food and shelter, so people wouldn’t have to go dumpster diving to eat?  It would greatly ease some of the tensions of living in an urban area.

Vocational rehabilitation?  Mental health care?  Like, could we at least try to help people get back on their feet, for real — as versus stigmatizing them and scaring everyone who does have a job and place to live, with the threat of ending up like them?

Of course, though, then the area would become even more of a magnet for the homeless across the country…

Anyhow, here is a photo of what I’ve got now, for the Expressive Portrait:

What I’m working with…

It was actually fairly interesting when I got to the point of being “done enough” with the face and started working on the headwrap.  In my photo reference, the color of the wrap echoes the color of the bottom lip…everything softened when I added the pink.  I’m pretty sure that’s Cadmium Red Light Hue, Quinacridone Magenta, and Titanium White.

The major problem I was having is that this scarf is printed (though I’m not going to paint in all of the print — it changes depending on the area of the scarf), so…it is hard to see the directionality of the swirls in the photo.  At school I would have had no reference.  At home, I can actually reproduce the wrap and see for myself what the fabric is doing, in the mirror.

I’m also thinking that I very well may need to stick with the same palette for the rest of the painting, or at least work in some of the hues I used in the face.  Most of the tones used in the skin are earth tones — Yellow Ochre, Burnt Sienna, Raw Umber, Payne’s Grey, and Titanium White, with Cadmium Yellow Light Hue, Cadmium Orange Hue, Cadmium Red Light Hue, and Dioxazine Purple as the only really saturated hues.  I didn’t use a blue, because the Purple and Grey added enough blue…I was having problem enough with the mix turning green, as it was.

Which reminds me of something I should note:  Cadmium Red Light Hue plus Payne’s Grey and Titanium White, makes a really pretty lavender shade.

A lot of people are working prismatically where it comes to the color of the skin on their own portraits, but my prof didn’t seem to have a problem with this portrait being brown.  I get the hint that it may be because it’s a statement, in itself, to make a portrait of a person with not-white skin…

What I need to do, but haven’t really worked on yet, is add gel medium to the painting so that I satisfy the requirement of working with texture.  I nearly entirely forgot about that part of the assignment.  I’m pretty sure that the texture is going to go on the ropy part of the headwrap; I’ve worked on the facial features to the extent that I don’t really want to mess with them.

Prof gave a demonstration of how to use the gel medium on Monday, but it was really too late for me to follow her example and use it on the face, by that point.  Unless, that is, I want to repaint all of the face, which I don’t, given that this is due on Monday.  (This is the reason I’m not going to rework the face and add the tilt to the facial features which is inadvertently minimized…I just really…don’t want to do it.)

As I’m looking at this, I’m thinking that I should probably paint in the directionality of the twists before adding the gel medium over them…I thought the torque illustrated was too much, but now that I see it at this size, it actually looks right.

Alright, so I’m going to do something I don’t normally do, and post at noon!  GASP!  Okay.  🙂  I’ll try and get some work done, today…


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Haru ("Codey") is a third-year Master's student in Library and Information Science, hoping to find a way to fuse their desire to make the world a better place and to finance their art.

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