Saturday, September 4, 2010

Pop Art Portrait

Decorate your walls with pop art portraits!

Here's how to make one...

Materials include Tracing Paper or Velum, Pencil, Bristol, Gouache and a Paintbrush.

1. First, select a photograph. Make sure your picture is large enough to trace easily. I chose to recreate a self portrait.

2. Next, use your pencil to trace your image by placing a piece of velum or tracing paper on top of your original photograph. Do not trace every detail. Simply trace the features that you wish to highlight in your final painting.

3. When you are finished, turn the tracing paper over and rub your pencil on the back. This way, when you retrace your image it will transfer onto your bristol.

4. Turn your tracing paper or velum back over to the original side you traced on. Place your bristol behind it. Now, retrace your image. Press hard. It will transfer onto your bristol paper.

5. Pick a pair of complementary colors on the color wheel (Opposite hues on the color wheel = Yellow and Purple, Blue and Orange or Red and Green). I chose Red and Green. Take out your primary color  gouache (Red, Blue or Yellow) and mix to create your secondary color (Green, Orange or Purple).

6. Decide which of the two colors you wish to "Split." For example, I decided to split Green. Green is between Yellow-Green and Blue-Green on the color wheel. I mixed my true Green with more Yellow to create Yellow-Green and Blue to create Blue-Green. You may also add white to any of the colors you created to tint it. (I tinted Red by adding white to create pink). If you chose to split Purple or Violet, you would use Violet-Red and Blue-Violet as your split complementary colors.

7. Next, take out new sheets of bristol paper. Apply your paint to the bristol. Use different strokes. Add texture to some areas by applying the brush in different manners. You may also use items such as a sponge or paper towel to add texture. Be creative. Make sure that some areas are more solid in color than others. I used a toothbrush and my fingerprints to add unique texture to my painting. Your freehand paintings can also make for unique wall art decor.
8. Wait until the paint is dry. Gouache is a water-based product and dries very quickly. When your paint is dry, place your painted paper underneath your original tracing paper and retrace. It may not rub off easily, so you may have to eyeball it and sketch the features you wish to display. For example, smaller features such as eyes are difficult to copy.

9. Cut out your tracings and collage to recreate the original photograph. Do not cut out large areas except possibly for the background. You want smaller strips to create realism and show texture.

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