Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Chief Steve LittleSalmon, 11x14, 9x11

The Montana Painter's Alliance....
....has invited me on their painting events a couple of times.  Lucky me.  One of those times was in the Flathead Valley and the National Bison Range....and there was a morning when Chief Steve LittleSalmon agreed to pose.

Chief LittleSalmon has an impressive presence about him, especially when he puts on his traditional garments.  If I remember correctly he sat for about 90 minutes assuming a few initial poses before settling on this one.  I chose a spot that emphasized all the shapes and colors in his headdress and played down his face a bit.  His profile is accurate but hardly noticed with all that color.

Here is one of the sketches I did before the painting.   It played up his face and would have been just as interesting.  The under drawing for my painting was also sketchy like this.

 I ran across this piece when pulling some things together for my last portrait class...had forgotten all about it.  At the same time I ran across some photos of the Chief from after the painting session when he put on other traditional costumes and let us photograph him.  How often does that happen in a lifetime?

I wanted to show what could be done from a photo and painted this one last Tuesday before class.  It is certainly 'tighter' than the one from life but I tried to keep the paint application lively and interesting.

And here is the reference photo:

And there you have it.  I searched for warms and cools wherever I could find them and pushed them around a bit.  Also lightened some shadows and darkened the lights.  The green band in the painting was inspired by the need of an abstract shape that would symbolize a man who was of the outdoors.

Thanks for looking.  Back soon....

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