Portraiture is not really my thing, most likely due largely to inexperience, non-practice, and undeveloped drawing skills, but recently we played around with faces in my watercolor class, working from photographs. This little blue watercolor is the result of a monochromatic value exercise in which we started out by painting only the shadows. I went for a combination of Winsor Blue and French Ultramarine, using for inspiration this photograph of my daughter taken a few decades ago. I just love the way her hair is flying around kind of willy-nilly, and the expression on her face, which is lifted just a bit. I created a black and white image of the original photograph and painted only the shadows. I came back in later and darkened up a few places, and consciously chose to not add any other color. I am not bothered by the fact that it looks nothing like the photograph, since it was not my goal to do a portrait, but rather just to see what would happen if I concentrated only on shadows. I like the way the negative and positive space work together, and that there is a rather ethereal quality to it.
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