The portrait is probably the hardest exercise in painting. I repeat it constantly. It is necessary to find the good colors, the good gradations, a just modeled, and especially a drawing well finished. All this requires experience and some mastery.
Observe, Roland realizes an African woman’s face, in a simple and fast way, without seeking the detail and the precision, to better concentrate on the colors, and the placement of the shades and lights.
“I realize my graphite pencil drawing HB. My drawing is precise. After having defined a meaning to my light (it comes from the right), I place my shadows directly. It is a mixture of yellow ocher, burnt umber and red ocher. I place some shadows very much in the burnt shadows. ”
“Then I put my middle color on the rest of the face, overflowing on my shadows. It is a mixture of orange, yellow ocher, and red ocher and white. I add on the reliefs of the face hanging more light (cheekbone, nose, nostril, lower lip, forehead) a lighter value made of the same mixture with more white and a hint of medium yellow. The upper lip is made of medium color with a hint of red. Then I refine my painting by redrawing my features (shadows of the nostrils, contours of the eyes, between lips, ear) with a finer and more precise shadow. The eyes are painted with a creamy tone for the whiteness of the eye and shadows burned for the pupil.
“I then refine my lights as for the shadows, with more precision. I make a slight fade between all these values, but not too much. The key is to get a fair modeling. Then I place a small shadow under the upper eyelids and precise eyelashes that outline the eye area. I refine my eyebrows.
I add a few highlights to give shine to my face (tip of the nose, forehead, lower lip and upper lip contour, cheekbones). Ultimate detail that gives life to the face: the tiny shine of brightness on the pupil and the white of the eye, which I realize not with a pure white, but slightly broken. ”
“And to finish my portrait, I paint the headscarf around the neck and head, to put on stage this pretty face of a young African woman.”