Today, for the first time in a long while (second time ever) I tried painting some people into a picture. I was really nervous beforehand, afraid I was going to mess up a whole afternoons work. Before i started, the painting looked like this:
At this point I had used about three hours painting a sunny beach. I thought it looked pretty good, but there was definitely something missing. There are some sailboats out on the ocean, but the picture doesn´t really come to life. I was thinking about putting in a parasol or two, playing it safe. But in the end, it would be cowardly not trying to bring some people onto the beach.
So I started looking online, trying to find out which techniques other people have used painting beach people. I wanted to paint the them quite small, making the beach seem a little grander than it did now, without anything on it.
As I concluded, people painted with a quite small amount of detail often seemed a lot better than the ones who was kind of overworked. I guess it´s a way of playing it safe, but it makes the margin of error a bit smaller. This would work in my advantage regarding both the size I wanted to paint them in, and given the poor experience I have painting people. So it turned out like this:
I´m actually very happy with the outcome, even if it could have been a little better. I actually considered putting in some more people. But beeing late in the afternoon, the risk of error was way to big. I also did some extra work on the clouds, as you can see compared to the first version. I put on an extra layer of titanium white and used a round brush to blend in the colors. I also put in some background clouds, using the leftover paint on the brush. Having painted a quite disappointing picture yesterday, this ended up beeing a really good day!