Sunday, 21 February 2010

Self Portrait in Acrylics

14" x 10" acrylics on paper

This is the finished self portrait in acrylics. See below for the process of how I got here.

This was a challenge on WetCanvas to produce a self portrait in acrylics and not to display until 20th February, which is why I had to wait until now to reveal!

First the pencil drawing from which I have worked - made myself look chubbier than in real life, but who cares. I will chisel it down a little when I paint.

Transferred the image to watercolour paper 14" x 10" and I also printed the line drawing on a piece of acetate to help later when I need to check if my placements are still correct. When painting I often lose sight of what goes where and the acetate is a real boon when re-establishing the features. When placed over the painting you can see exactly where you went wrong and get back the likeness.

Then painted in acrylics, using the paint very dilute and building in thin transparent layers, which gives a very soft translucent effect very similar to watercolours. Had sooo much trouble with the area under the nose and the neck, but I have to post this image so you can see... it looks so funny. I feel I look like the poisoned dwarf with facial hair - not a good look! LOL. Oh it's good to laugh.

Then I worked more on it, darkened the background, fixed the mouth, lightened the neck and under nose area getting rid of the facial hair and produced the final painting, which I hope is a little better. :)


  1. Good picture!!! Great blog!!!


  2. Hi Frank, many thanks for the lovely comment.

    I took a look at your blog and you take some wonderful photos!