Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Old Time Fiddler

This is a recently completed oil painting that was done as an in-class demonstration in my Illustration 1 course at RIT. It depicts an old time fiddle player named Kenny Baker. The references that I worked from were very different from my finished painting. Washed out, flat lighting, confusing backgrounds, and a distracting plaid shirt. My goal was to edit and simplify so that the focus was only on the essentials...a great face and his hand holding the fiddle and bow. I eliminated the plaid and added a classic western shirt style. I also kept things very raw with a limited palette and a painterly approach where some of the under painting remains visible in the finish. I worked with a similar texture on the shirt and the background to create cohesion and to avoid a "cut-out" effect. I also blurred some edges to tie the figure to the background.