Portrait Painting of Costumed Model with Commentaries

Excerpt of Sherrie painting a portrait of a model in a flapper costume while David answers questions from their Santa Fe workshop participants.

She poses the model with flat light, which underscores the importance of using temperature changes to give the illusion of a human form and still retain flat shapes.

Simple shapes give graphic strength that makes a painting carry from a distance.

This is the most important quality any good painting has—carrying power.

The decision to paint three-quarters of the figure was made so she could include the hands.

The challenge of fitting this complex subject matter on a small canvas requires some adjustments to find the composition but once Sherrie is confident in the placement, she lays in the shadows and background to set up the light.

David states that the most important thing in learning to paint is making brushstrokes, and Sherrie demonstrates this skill beautifully.

While David entertains and educates the audience about some of the finer points of painting, Sherrie paints with abandon.

As the viewer you have the best of two worlds—the indulgence of almost non-stop questions from a curious audience and the focused attention that Sherrie is able to give the painting.

Although Sherrie would have loved to continue longer to adjust some of the proportions, she was enthralled with the stimulation of a beautiful costumed model and an appreciative audience.

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