Charlie and Lula

Charlie and Lula Painting

Here it is, the finished painting. Charlie and Lula – 18.5 ” x 22.5 ” Arches 140 lb. cold pressed paper.

This was an enormous challenge. Everything about it was difficult for me. But, what a joy to work on. Charlie’s face was an enigma, and it’s still not perfect. But, I’ve worked it so hard that I have to stop and be happy with it. I’m happy with it.


Charlie and Lula – In the Making

Charlie and Lula painting

I’m posting this now, unfinished, because I really do love sharing the process of painting watercolor; especially since I have no idea what I’m doing and it’s such a learning. For example, see how messed up Lula’s right leg is? I hope I can save it.

charlie and lula 2

I know it’s hard to tell on a screen, but a lot of building on the right side of the painting with glazes of cobalt and burnt umber in the sand and pebbles left wet by the receding shoreline waves with more detail in the larger pebbles in the foreground. I’ve started working on Lula with skin-tones of the same glaze plus a whisper of quinacridone red on her left leg and arm and building up the details in the beach toys. The darks in the water wheel are a indigo with a little water but no much and a quinacridone purple glaze added to the top to deepen the tones and give it shape. I haven’t tackled that messed up right leg yet :/ but I’m moving that way. The yellows are Hansa yellow, lemon and burnt umber for the shadow areas and bit’s of sand. Back to work!

Charles and Lula

I believe I saved Lula’s leg. Now for Charlie! I’m afraid of and am avoiding the right leg, if I can keep the knee facing frontward. I think Lula is done, but I always say that and then go back to add more glazing. She probably does need one more glaze to make her stand out more. But, I need to work the values up on Charlie and the left side beach area in order to be able to tell just how much. Some of the shadow shapes need to change to better reflect the thing they represent.

I’ve built the values on Charlies clothing and skintones and have started working on the beach area around him.

Charlie and Lula 4

The wave on the left and beach area are looking better. I’m happy with the shadows and pebbles. I’ve darkened the skin tone values with additional glazes and am happy with them. I think I have pulled off Charlies hand and feet and leg on the left very nicely. His face is another story. He doesn’t looked as pained as he did before, but it still isn’t really my Charlie. I’ll come back to that and post the final draft separately.