July 31, (I tried to post this yesterday from my phone but had no luck)
Wow! This week has been challenging. Teaching 8 promising (but nonverbal or expressive) young ladies (14-17 yrs.) to produce lots of work for their portfolios as well as how to work from life portraits has been a task. I've been too exhausted to get anything else done. Prep time has taken every extra moment because the class has to be rearranged to fit their needs. ...
And... The 31 PORTRAITS IN 31 DAYS project starts tomorrow!
I thought I'd go into this slowly and with a lot of free time to put towards getting myself in the zone. But jumping in feet first has always seemed to be my usual approach to life, thus again it will happen.
No problem. Thinking under pressure has always suited me best. And I trust that this project will go well. I'm fairly ready with supplies at least. It's just rest that I'm lacking.
August 1: Day 1!
I am really excited that the day has come to start my project. I am ready. Brooke Nicole Lynn will arrive at 2 PM today for her three hour sitting for the first of this month's challenging agenda. I look forward to having her. I kind of set myself up to have an easy day and hope it goes that way. If you have seen Brooke you will understand. She is stunningly beautiful. Capturing what makes her so beautiful will be exciting for me. I met Brooke's mom Jeannie through a friend of a friend on FaceBook and she has become a dear friend! Jeannie will be posing for me on the 17th!
I have been slowly changing my skin tone mixtures in the last 7 years to be more buttery. I wrote my book based on the way I painted skin for the previous years since I started painting portraits in 1984 and still stand by those colors. But, lately, I have wanted to expand and improve my work by using more layers and more opaque paints to create a smoother creamier skin tone. So, my goal is to use this month to really embrace this color theory and figure out how exactly I want to adjust my skin tones to get the best result in my work. My color theory worked for me then and now I am just taking it to a new level of life-likeness. The new colors that I am adding to my pallet are in the lit side of the skin. I am using Cadmium Scarlet, Cadmium Yellow medium, Quinachrodome Magenta, and Cadmium Green Pale along with the other colors in my pallet. I am omitting Permanent Rose and Indian Yellow.
WORKING TOWARDS A CAUSE: Going into this project, I have a lot of goals and just a few issues. My cousin, Susan, suggested that I use this time to also promote a non-profit, but I tend to make things too complicated and stress myself out. When I was young I thought I needed to conquer the world all at once, so to say. But, the older I get, the more I realize that keeping things as simple as my personality allows, the better I am.
And I repeat, "as my personality allows". I am not good at staying away from multitasking. Once someone suggests an idea that sounds fairly good as Susan's idea does ... my mind continually prods me to work it in. But, I really don't have the time. So, I will suggest it here and hope that it does make an impact. If I did include a non-profit, I would start with HHT (AKA Osler Weber Rendu Syndrom). If during this month you would like to donate to (or just become aware of) HHT.org, please do so in the name of my mom, my uncle, my grandfather, and myself. My mom died two years ago from HHT, at the age of 78. My grandfather died at 77 from HHT. My uncle, in his 70's, is still alive and fighting daily with bleeds.
We all have or had the unfortunate genetic malformation of our vascular system which omits any capillaries. I am the only one out of the four children that was lucky enough to inherit the genes. (Sorry, bad humor is in the genes too.) The lack of capillaries means that the small veins cannot handle the flow from the artery and create bubble like polyps or spiderweb like veins in the soft tissue that burst often due to weakness, causing artery flows. It is not fun to have, and the lack of stress in my life is pretty important because I do have this. If I have ANYTHING that thins my blood, I will find myself fighting continual nose bleeds (or worse intestinal or throat bleeding). For instance, just a couple of foods I cannot eat are oranges, cherries, cinnamon, tarragon, cayenne, ginger, salmon, etc. These are just my favorites. If my blood pressure goes up slightly, if the environment is too hot or dry, if my body reacts with pressure from eating too much, etc. I have to deal with trying to not loose too much blood. Needless to say how others react when they see you. It's pretty embarrassing and humiliating at times. In this day and age with all the issues of blood contact, I can imagine seeing me bleed makes people concerned as well. I usually only share this as needed. But, for the advancement of a need to cure this in the future generations, I expose what I keep quiet about. See HHT.org for more information.
On a good day ... I don't bleed. So, I just try to have as many good days as possible. Today is going to be a good day! I hope yours is too. I better get the studio ready for painting now.