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Old 02-12-2007, 05:41 PM   #1
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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The Belly Dancer




Hello All,

I posted the reference photo for this painting in the composition section. It is not my goal that this end up being an exact replica of the photo so I didn't want to post the reference to compare it side by side with my painting. I am just interested in knowing what you think of this so far simply from looking at it.

Thanks,

Janel
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:28 PM   #2
Alan Melson Alan Melson is offline
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I really like the composition with a note below. From my viewpoint I would strengthen the shadows (referrring to your great photos) and introduce some cool skin tones in the lights with that beautiful model in front of you. I would also subdue the blue skirt at the bottom and let it melt into the background somewhat. If you can have a few more soft edges in the scarf it would be helpful I think and make it seem more flowing with motion. The scarf color is overpowering the face somewhat. But I am not a pro, keep that in mind too.


I wonder what it would look like with her left hand touching the top of the frame introducing still another beautiful negative shape.

That really is a great compostion and you have a great start on it my opinion. I love compostions like that with nice lighting. I would love to hire that model . You've got a great one there. Keep it up!
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Old 02-19-2007, 04:37 PM   #3
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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Alan,

Thank you for taking the time to respond and for your suggestions. Some of the points you made were identical to the ones my husband (my toughest critic) pointed out.

The first thing he told me when seeing it was "The background kills the painting"
You can't see it in the photo, but when seeing it in person, she looks like she is sucked into the background and the background comes forward.

I hated it, but he was right.

It took me a bit to build enough courage to completely block out the background and the scarf with a neutral color so I could start over and she jumped to the front of the painting. I'm glad I did it. You (both) were right, the scarf was overpowering her face.

I'm in thinking mode right now.

Thanks again,

Janel
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Old 02-20-2007, 08:54 PM   #4
Enzie Shahmiri Enzie Shahmiri is offline
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Hi Janel,

What a wonderful subject!
You might consider having some lost edges when you are working with the background. By very subtly introducing some of the flesh tones and garment colors in the background, the figure will harmonize better with the background.
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Old 02-26-2007, 04:57 PM   #5
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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Update

And here is where thinking mode took me.

I still have quite a few areas where I have to push things back or bring them forward, and several where I am not happy with the color, but I thought I would post an update because the painting is so radically different than my original post.

Sorry about the shine, it is 100% wet yet.
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Old 02-26-2007, 05:07 PM   #6
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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I'm sorry Enzie,

I thought I responded to your post earlier. Thank you for taking the time to do so. You were right about the edges and her not harmonizing with the background. It was really hard for me to do, but by lightening the background her edges look softer and she looks like she belongs in that spot. At least that is my opinion. At first, the thought of what it was going to take to make the change made me want to cry but now that I am well into it, I am liking it more.
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:53 PM   #7
Alan Melson Alan Melson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janel Maples
And here is where thinking mode took me.







I still have quite a few areas where I have to push things back or bring them forward, and several where I am not happy with the color, but I thought I would post an update because the painting is so radically different than my original post.

Sorry about the shine, it is 100% wet yet.


Nice Changes in the painting. Congratulations!
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Old 02-28-2007, 10:33 PM   #8
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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Thank you Alan, I needed that.
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Old 03-01-2007, 05:24 PM   #9
Enzie Shahmiri Enzie Shahmiri is offline
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The lighter background is working much better. It does make you wonder though how Caravaggio got away with placing his figures into those dark backgrounds, doesn't it?

Janel, post your reference so that we can help you point out some of the things that need to get fixed. Something is off with the arm that is raised. What an angle!

By the way I love the bottom part of the painting. She sort of fades into it, which I think looks great.
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:02 PM   #10
Janel Maples Janel Maples is offline
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Hello Enzie,

Here is the reference photo. Just so you know, I didn't post the reference with this because I wasn't shooting for an exact replica of the photo. You could go nuts with pointing out the errors. There are a lot so don't put too much time into it.

My goal in this painting was to try to paint quickly and let go a little. This painting is not a commission.
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