Atlas 9

It is amazing how much the skin tones change as I paint in the background. As it changes from white to these dark colors I keep going back and forth in my head about reworking the skin tones. Colors look very different depending on what colors are next to them and that is the hardest thing I need to learn. With that in mind I will bring the background very close to finished and I have a lot to add. Stay tuned.Atlas98

Atlas 8

The background is standing out a bit too much so to knock it down without changing the subtle tones I am mixing Ultramarine Blue with a lot oil to make a clear. The car guys call it a “candy”. Just put a nice smooth coat over everything in the background and go from this:


To this:


I am still wrestling with the skin tones on Atlas. Darker or not? Feel free to let me know what you think.

Atlas 7

Continuing with Orion in the background,Atlas93That looks pretty bright for a background but let’s get it done.


Finishing up the heads, it’s time to step back for a moment.

Atlas95 Atlas96

You can see I am making decisions on the fly for Orion’s tunic or kilt or whatever mythical gods call their man skirt. I have an idea on how to tone that background down. Tune in tomorrow to see how.

Atlas 6

Working with the background elements I have filled in the earth a little. I hear it’s mostly water.


Then I work on the background, or the back background, the deep space, all the way in the back background.


Atlas really pops out of that dark color. I am now considering deepening the tones on Atlas by making the shadows darker and in more contrast to the light areas.

But first let’s start painting Orion.


That is a good start but now I am not happy with his tunic. It’s not a skirt. Seriously, Orion the Hunter does not wear a skirt.


Atlas 4

Let’s paint this thing!

Flesh tones are tough to mix. You can lean to far pink or to far orange and a mythical god does not do spray tan. I am using red, yellow, burnt sienna, and strangely green. This creates a dark “brown” but as you add it to white the flesh color reveals itself. I start with the face which is about the size of your thumb print so I am painting some subtle shapes and letting the pencil marks show through.


Moving down to the muscles the trick is use your darks and lights to shape the muscles by staying true to the light source. My anatomy classes from college are paying off for me here. I dissected a lot of formaldehyde soaked animals learning the underlying structures.


Painting hair is something I haven’t mastered yet. I’ll be doing a lot of repainting in the next few weeks.