Monday, June 4, 2007

Oom Paul's Portrait

Here is the finished portrait of Oom Paul and his beloved dog Ilya, done on watercolor canvas. Oom Paul passed away recently. He was a great man, very kind and gentle, and he will be greatly missed. This is a gift for his wife.
The middle image is the first "finished" portrait, before I put it away for a few days. Afterwards, I was able to see mistakes in the face and some areas in the background I didn't like. The last image is the final portrait.

I've included the original photograph, not to show how much of a likeness there is, but to show the source material I was working with and the changes I made to make the painting work better.
I've noticed that sometimes people like to display the original photograph next to the final portrait in their homes to show the great likeness of the painting. But isn't that defeating the purpose of having an artist's interpretation of an individual's personality and style? I think a portrait should strive for the likeness of an individual, but it should always be able to stand alone as a meaningful painting.
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