Woman – 22 October 2010

Woman 22 October 2010 - watercolor and India ink on paper, about 5"x8"

This one shares some similarities with various other urban scenes I’ve posted. I used more-or-less all primary colors – yellow, blue, red… something I do frequently. I like the way both sides of the background converge onto her, creating some symmetry. She could just be standing in front of the corner of a building, but she’s also where lines converge – she’s the vanishing point of the perspective of the piece. The background sort of emanates from her.

One example of a zillion images of Christ with two fingers raised. This image is Christ Giving His Blessing, by Hans Memling, painted in 1481, from Boston Museum of Fine Arts, click to follow link to larger image

Along with her halo, her two upraised fingers reference iconic paintings of Christ giving his blessing. (I also did this earlier here, but didn’t explain it then.) Her hand is turned away, though, so it’s less of an exact quoting of a Christ pose… and more obscure. Perhaps she’s blessing herself… or perhaps it could be a hand signal used by gangs… or a hand gesture from India.

More likely it’s just the way I like to bring hands into portraits – explained a bit here – see also images here and here and here. Seems like all my stuff is more-or-less variations on the same, and it’s all copied from stuff that’s already been done, no?

Earlier state - the same piece on the day I initially inked it, in October 2010

And here’s an earlier cell phone shot of the piece. From this, it’s easy to see the light wash of Payne’s grey that I put down initially (still visible in the final image, just outside the frame.) Other than filling in the color (which is pretty obviously different), the only significant difference  between these states was that I ended up drawing in her sleeves and arms more – compare both of the lower corners to the image above.

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