Oil Painting: Garth Herrick Portrait Demo: The Boy's Shorts and Face

Garth Herrick oil portrait

In the next installment of the demonstration, the artist tackles the boy's shorts and develops the highlights on the boy's face.

I tackled the boy's shorts, organizing the color changes in reflections and shadows. Although the kids were wearing white or off-white clothes, they are a kaleidoscope collection of various colors in this environment. There was a golden glow of light coming from one side of the kids and a cooler color light shining from the other side. It seemed a little shocking at first to put that golden color on the shorts. I ended up painting yellow over that, but it was a good guide for me—the gold color influenced what I painted on top. I just scumbled or feathered over the foundation I laid down. Then I began to work on the boy's face—I couldn’t reach it without the stepladder. At first I was shy about putting too many disjointed color spots in his face, but sometimes that is the only way to get where you need to go. There were so many different colors and values that had to be organized, and I had to decide if it was better to develop something monochromatically or through colors. I was sneaking up on some of the highlights here. They looked intense enough at first, but the more I developed other things, the more I realized I needed to go further.

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


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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