Alla Prima Process

Alla prima paintings are completed in one sitting.  When I paint a portrait this way, I draw with my brush, minding the spacial relationships between features.  Next, I lay in the darks using full color, to support the forms of the face.  The midtones, the lights and their transitions blend into the previous wet passages to complete a loosely painted portrait.  This one layer painting allows me to break from the confines of too much detail and preserves the energy captured at the very start of a painting.

12″ x 12″ Oil on Linen

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Published by elenacaravela

My world is a wonder of visual candy and foreboding shadow shapes vying every waking moment for my full attention.

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  1. Thanks for sharing your process, Elena! This is lovely work and very interesting to me since I am learning portraiture myself! You are plainly a very experienced and accomplished artist 🙂

  2. Thanks for the info on alla prima painting. Always makes a piece more intersting knowing what goes on in the mind of the artist and your plan as you paint. Technique. Technique. You’ve got it down. I think children are more difficult to draw/paint. You have captured the moment.

    1. Oh to be Leonardo’s student! Carol, a long while back you requested a progress post with a young person as subject. If you still have a need/desire, you are welcome to this one. Thanks so much for your continued support:)

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