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Quick Portrait Sketching!

Whew!  I tried to get into gear with some quick portrait sketches last week.  I'm still pretty slow, but I'll be working harder to get faster.

At a Wednesday painting group, I sketched Rev. Thomas, very happy to get so much done in only two sessions (approx 40-45 min.):

Then on Thursday night I went over to John Ball's to paint Brittany with his group.  I was surprised to do a quick 20 min sketch!

Then on Saturday I fought with a very bright day at the Laurel Hill Spring Arts Festival, and sketched a couple of new friends.  While I was working on them they looked kind of like this:

But when I was able to get them into the light they looked much better:

Both were approx. 15 minutes, and both were talking and moving around, so I think I did good considering.  Still I'm still practicing, trying to get better.  I have yet to master the quick portrait sketch.


George Washington App BTS

Confession: a major reason I worked on this app project was to collaborate with an artist.  

David Nielsen is a like minded artist—also an illustrator—sharing many of my faith and ideals.  But at the same time we have major differences.  Our styles, for instance, are very different.  In fact that was one of the things I was going to see if we could overcome over the course of this project.  

Here's our process:

After reading the story, I started with a sketch.  This is from a moment in young George Washington's life, when he first encountered military combat.

Second, David created value and color studies based on my drawings.

Of course it's slightly more complicated than paint by number....  

I took his color study and finished out all the details to make the finished painting.

This scene is from the American Revolution as the Colonial forces fought some of the best military powers in the world.  In the battle at Trenton, they fought against German mercenary troops in house to house combat on a snowy morning.

Preston Cone, one of the founders of the Founding Fathers Project, modeled for this shot in colonial garb!

Daniel worked on this, changing the perspective and creating some cool harmonies.  I took it from him before he could really get going though...

The finished shot.  Played with the perspective a lot more.  (Yes, I have both the walking and getting-shot Hessians on this pic.  It's a little confusing right now, but it's not in the app.)

At the end of the American War for Independence, Washington gathered his troops together for a very moving dinner together.

David's value and color study... 

And the finished painted.  

We did a lot more work that didn't make it into the app.  Maybe at some anniversary in the future, we can come back and hit some of these really interesting moments in the Washington saga....

Young George Washington and his Native American allies.  Color study for an illustration which did not make the book.

The Hessians surrendering at Trenton.  I'd love to see this finished with the falling snow and all.

Perhaps at that later date, David and I can go back and touch up some of the artwork.  But on the whole, I'm very satisfied with what we got done here.

I think we were successful, but you be the judge.  Try out the app.  What do you think?