It was a goal to make this painting have an old masters quality to it. I wanted it to have a significant warmth that would almost radiate from the work. In order to do that I used a technique of underpainting called grisaille, which is an underpainting done in nearly monochrome. Often it is done in shades of gray but I wanted the warmth to come through in the final painting, so I opted for yellows, golds and browns.
As you can see, the whole painting was completed in these tones prior to adding any other color. I had family members who saw the painting at this stage and thought it was finished. Nice of them to think that, but it was far from done!
This was at a point later as I began layering color. I tried to remain mindful that the colors not get too vibrant or vivid. Even the red of the little boy's jacket was muted to help in creating the old masters feel.
Next blog post will show the completed painting and unveiling event.
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