My New Feather Painting!!!

Well, here it is:

“Sitting Bull” Acrylic on brown turkey tail. Feather measures 12.5″ x 3.25″ and actual painting measures 5″ x 3″ by Brandy Davis

“Sitting Bull” Hand-painted acrylic on a brown turkey tail. Goodness, I’m not even quite sure how many hours it has taken me to complete – I lost track…my guess is 30+ hours – and normally my single-person portraits don’t take me that long but I ran into a few snags during this process. It hasn’t been mounted or framed yet, so I will post additional pictures soon.

This particular painting was very difficult for me to complete. About 10 hours into the painting I couldn’t quite figure out why this painting process was not going as smoothly as I was used to. Well, it dawned on me that I had many “firsts” with this painting.

-This was the first time I had ever painted a portrait while using a reference photo where the subject was facing the camera head-on. Every professional portrait I have painted has either had their face slightly turned away from the camera or it has been a profile. So interestingly enough this painting was a whole new challenge for me as a head-on portrait requires extra attention to detail and correct proportions.

-This was the first time I filmed my painting process. As promised, I wanted to post a time lapse video on YouTube, and needless to say, it was quite the tedious process! I was very confined with regards to my painting technique. I couldn’t quite figure out how to comfortably maneuver my hand while managing not getting in the way of the camera. And being that I frequently turn my painting upside down and on it’s side (See my “Painting Upside Down” post here) it was frustrating trying to keep what I was painting within the camera frame.

And the biggest “first” of all:

-I used an easel!! Aghh! (And I hated every minute of it) Ok, to clarify, this was not the absolute first time I’ve used an easel, but for feather painting – it was my first time I wholeheartedly attempted it. There are multiple reasons I personally do not use an easel for feather painting (And since there is too much to discuss regarding “The Ease of Easel Use” it has naturally inspired another blog post – coming soon! :-) ). The only reason I used an easel for this painting project was due to the required positioning for time-lapse filming. Anyhow, after lots of frustration I took an “easel break” and took my painting to a more familiar spot, and that’s when things quickly turned from this:

Decent start to a painting, but it looks like a completely different person, doesn’t it?…and I think it was only getting worse from here, so I decided it was time to take some action.

To this:

This is the exact same painting as above, but this is what happens when I ditch the easel and go straight to painting “my way”

Lesson learned! – Don’t ever sacrifice comfort for conformity!

Although it is not perfect, I am really happy with how it turned out. I will be spending the rest of tonight mounting and framing it – so again, stay tuned for more photos! Thanks for viewing, and also stay tuned for the YouTube time lapse!

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