Oil Painting: Garth Herrick Portrait Demo: Further Work on Faces

Garth Herrick oil portrait

In this installment of the demonstration, the artist works on the details in the portrait.

The little girl was close to where I wanted her to be, but the older girl seemed a little too dark. I needed to add a white glaze over her just to send it in the right direction, and then I painted over the glaze. The boy’s hair looked extremely bright, and the face needed to be adjusted to complement this hair. I needed to trim his hair too. I traced some red lines onto his shirt—from my reference photo—to correct the drawing. I wasn’t proud of that, but it was something that I had to sort out because there were just too many niggling errors there. I attached my palette to my canvas—I got the idea from David Kassan, who positioned a vertical palette next to his painting. Attaching the palette to my canvas was a practical thing for me because I was on my stepladder and needed my hands free to work and to keep my balance. I was constantly reinventing and adjusting my approaches because of the scale of the canvas—I had to think outside of the box a little bit.

Garth Herrick oil portrait Garth Herrick oil portrait Garth Herrick oil portrait
Garth Herrick oil portrait


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About the Artist
Garth Herrick was a semifinalist in the Smithsonian Institution’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition and was awarded a certificate of excellence by the Portrait Society of America at their 2006 International Portrait Competition. He studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, where he received the William Emlen Cresson Memorial Traveling Scholarship, the Stewardson Prize, and the Thouron Prize. Herrick’s commissions include portraits of eight notable federal judges, a governor, a mayor and numerous cultural, educational, and business leaders. His work hangs in a number of public, corporate, and private collections. View his work at www.garthherrick.com.

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One thought on “Oil Painting: Garth Herrick Portrait Demo: Further Work on Faces

  1. This is one of the most enlightening pieces to date. I’m learning so much about better ways to think about what I’m trying to achieve. Thank you and I cannot wait for the next instalmant.