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Nikita Process

Lately I have been working on a couple pet commissions.  One is a Siberian cat and I will be starting an English Bulldog very soon.  Just thought you might see my day to day work on the Siberian cat portrait.

This is my sketch for the portrait, I tried to get as much detail as I could, because winging fur like this is really annoying, and the painting went by a lot smoother because of going the extra distance with the drawing.

Next I laid in the background colors, keeping in mind where the lights and darks would be on the cat, I put a light blue next to the portions that were darker in the cat and a more mid-range blue next to the highlights of the fur.  I like to lay in the darks when I do the background, so I can blur them a bit.

The next day I put another layer of deep dark color and filled in more of the shadow fur so I could blend it easier.  I don't concern myself too much with keeping it too crisp, as I plan to do another layer over everything anyway.  When it's dry it's easier to highlight the fur.

I then filled in the face.  It was tough to distinguish whether my colors were correct, so a lot of faith went with bridging the colors of the last two sessions.  I wasn't exact at all, which is frustrating, but as long as some of the groundwork is laid in you can always glaze it over and make it look more coherent. 

I then just used my left over paint that I had mixed and loaded it up with liquin, laying in the basic mid-tones and lighter areas.  This is just a good way to build up your colors, it's always good to have a bunch of layers when doing hair.  And it easily just takes another half hour of work.

The next day I worked on this, everything was dry so I started out the day by putting a layer of liquin over everything so I could see how the colors were relating to each other.  When that was dry, which wasn't long, I glazed a mixture of Ult. Blue, Aliz. Crimson, and Raw Umber together to darken all the shadow areas, which was most of the right side.  Then I spent a good hour or so picking out highlights of hair.  Then I moved onto filling in all the light areas of the cats body, and because I laid in that glaze to fill in that whole area, it went by a lot quicker than I would have thought initially.  

Finally I filled in the eye and tail, pretty much just doing the same as I had been for the past two days.  When doing the highlights I pretty much use as much liquin as I can to make the paint flow nicely.

As soon as this is dry I will scan it and post it.  This is probably the best fur I have done yet, which is quite exciting, cause I love painting hair.


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