Comes the Dawn - full demo

Philip Howe Fine Art
Philip Howe's Art and 3D classes, CLICK HERE
Recent work 4
Angel Paintings
Recent Work 3
Recent Work 2
Recent Work 1
Fine Art - Figures,Portraits, Other Subjects
Life Drawings (Figure drawings)
Early work_ 1980's, 1990's
Demos of several Paintings
Links to other Artists
Technical Page

This 42x64" oil on canvas painting went through a few changes on the wings, until the translucent look and color harmony I was seeing in my head, reached the canvas. Sometimes it takes a little going backwards to move further forward and I have certainly done my share of overpainting to get the effects that I want. It usually comes back to color and tone and balance, but it always starts with an idea I like, then a composition that is intriguing enough to get me full into the painting process. Like much of my more creative work now, I render out a fairly comprehesive digital image, usually color over a drawing, the same one I use to project on canvas. At least, in this way, I have something to glance at from time to time if I need to redo areas, especially in figure work. Most of the backgrounds in all of my work are made up or a combination of some reference and my imagination based on physics of the real world, knowledge of color and 30 years of illustrating doesn't hurt. Its really the only way I can come up with the lighting, as in this piece, that looks like it fits the scene and sets the figure on the beach. I try to avoid any plein-aire look of naturalism, and especially that cut-out and pasted on look of using models (usually from life) stuck into fake settings. If I can do one thing well, its placing figures in a real space that fits the look of this imagined background.

Simple drawing on rough canvas-face area gesso sanded more
Head blocked in using planes- note reference nearby if needed
Smoothing out the head planes, moving the paint around
Left side block in of the water area
Nearing the mid-stage of painting- now ready for tweaking and additional layers
Adding white first, before glazing yellow over for strongest glaze
Yellows glazed over the white underpainting for maximum color effect
Wings before tinting and toning them down
Paper mask used to blot paint over wings to begin translucency
Tinting over opaque wings to achieve transparent effect-base color
Glaze with liquin and darker coloring, applied with large brush liberally
Glaze smoothed out using mop brush to thin and even the oil
WN mop brush, showing the tip full of color after buffing glaze
Before glazing the ground area
After glazing the ground area- staining it darker, essentially
Wing color detail- note grayed back or toned down from initial coloring
Sand aread detail
Sky area detail
Comes the Dawn final 42x64" oil on canvas
Head detail from final

Click here to return to the main Demos Page

Click here to go to the Philip Howe Home Page

Philip Howe Studio 425 328 5835