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unusual family portrait in oil

Family portrait

family portrait

2001-2. Oil on canvas, 40 x 26 inches.

This big family painting took a year of sittings scattered over a number of weekends. There were many changes of composition in response to the clients' wishes. Although responding to the clients' requests made a vast amount of extra work, almost all the requests were artistically sound, and I resisted only one suggestion. I think the changes, especially in the background, add to the depth and intensity of the painting.

Some details came by chance during the sittings and were put in as obviously better than what had originally been planned.

Once again I have used a deliberately restricted palette: lamp black, titanium white, yellow ochre, raw siena, raw umber, light red, plus a tiny bit of cadmium red and quinacridone violet. It still surprises me that one can get serviceable blues and greens from mixtures of the first three of these colours.