Demystifying Skin – Enhance Realism in Your Figurative Painting
In this painting course, artists receive a step-by-step guide to achieve realistic portraits with bright, smooth, and detailed skin. Each session builds artists’ confidence in painting portraits with convincing skin tones. Geared toward any artist who wants to improve their figurative painting skills in oil painting.
Instructor: Jessica Oliveras
Audience: Fine Art Painters
For Stage(s): Aspiring, Emerging, Accomplished, Professional
Not sure what stage you are? Visit our How It Works page for details.
Starts on March 4, 2023
Mar. 4 | Mar. 11 | Mar. 18 | Mar. 25 | Apr. 1
5 sessions, 3 hrs each, weekly
9am – 12pm MT
Note: Price in $USD
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In this painting course, artists receive a step-by-step guide to achieve realistic portraits with bright, smooth, and detailed skin. Each class builds artists’ confidence in painting portraits with convincing skin tones. Geared toward any artist who wants to improve their figurative painting skills in oil painting.
The course is divided into five sessions to provide a structured approach. The first session explores the theory behind painting a portrait, accompanied by palette demonstrations. In the following sessions, students begin to paint an oil portrait together (members will paint alongside the instructor—a combination of active painting and painting demos).
Session 1: Materials, color theory, neutralizing and controlling saturation, warm and cool colors, different types of skin-color mixing
Session 2: Color mixing for the portrait, first layer
Session 3: Second layer of portrait
Session 4: Third layer of portrait
Session 5: Last layer of portrait & finishing touches
After this painting course, you will have training in how to properly see color—leading to more accurate chroma and value choices and a more organic feeling in your portraits.
Gain a deep understanding of color mixing for skin tones in oil painting and confidence in painting realistic-looking skin in portraiture.
This art course will give you the tools and knowledge to apply the same structured approach to future figurative paintings, making your portrait look more convincing.
This course will also solve recurrent problems in your painting practice (how to approach edges, how to introduce cool colors in your skin mixes, etc.) so you have a solid foundation for continued learning and can incorporate all your new skin-tone painting knowledge into your style.
- A palette
- A medium of choice (liquin, linseed oil, etc.)
- A cotton rag
- A canvas
- A palette knife
- and oil colors
- round tip, size 0, 1, 2, 4, 8 – flat, e.g. size 8
- titanium white
- lemon yellow
- yellow ochre
- burnt sienna
- burnt umber
- viridian green
- ultramarine French blue
- ivory black.
*Extra colors like naples yellow, cadmium yellow, cadmium orange, king’s blue deep, and venetian red are useful to have but not essential.
The list acts as a source of reference but you can use colors similar to the ones suggested (names might change depending on the brand).
Preparation for the class: before the second class, have your canvas ready with the drawing done (I will send you the photo reference before starting the course). I recommend using a linen canvas, or a cotton canvas with fine grain. If the grain on your canvas is too coarse, you can apply more coats of gesso (I can give you guidance on how to do it during the first class).
In my works I consciously explore the privilege of being able to appreciate and document existence from a painter’s perspective.
Life is ephemeral by nature, starting with the fact that each person’s life is such an unlikely miracle that it is almost impossible.
What was the probability that my lineage remained intact since human existence and I was born? Almost none. And what was this same probability about the woman in my painting? Almost none neither.
Therefore, almost like within a state of dreaming or a vague memory, I depict the existence of the woman of my life in an attempt to represent the underrepresented and to visualize the invisible on a canvas that shall live forever.
I am drawn to survey the relationship between construction and deconstruction as an allegory of overcoming traumatic experiences. When I moved back to Spain after living in London for many years I felt I had to start building up my life over again. This situation made me feel extremely vulnerable and unstable, as in a matter of a two hours flight, everything changed.
The only thing it didn’t were my closest friends and family. Through an extorted reality, I play with forms in a figurative context to evoke a feeling of change. The background, having a collage-like appearance, interacts with the figure painted hyper-realistically.
The figure is well defined and detailed, reflecting the importance this person has to me. I only paint women that I know, therefore, the level of devotion I have for them can be appreciated on the canvas.
Painting can be incredibly isolating, but painting the women of my life, helps me to transcend this barrier and enhance my connection with them.