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Painting over life drawings with acrylic and watercolor pencils on ARTiful painting demos by Sandrine Pelissier

Painting over Life drawings with Acrylic and Watercolor Pencils

If you are going to a life drawing class, which I recommend you do 🙂 You will probably accumulate a lot of drawings over time. I am going to our weekly life drawing class in North Vancouver.

I am a bit of a slow drawer as I never have time to do much with paint in the classes, I usually end up with a contour drawing with some cross hatching shading.

Painting over Life drawings with Acrylic and Watercolor Pencils

More Life drawing inspired paintings on my website

 

So once in a while I like to experiment with ways to rework my life drawings after the class, in the studio, where I can take my time 🙂

Here is one of the techniques I sometimes use. You can watch a video where you see me painting the blue life drawing or you could read the post underneath where I took pictures for the orange life drawing.

 

 

How to paint over Life drawings with Acrylic and Watercolor Pencils in Pictures

You will need:

start with a life drawing on paper

A drawing on white paper, some fluid acrylic paint, clear gesso, a few brushes and watercolor pencils. You could also use dry pastels if you wanted to but I find I have more control with watercolor pencils.

figure drawing on paper

This is the drawing I did in class. If you have time try to delimit areas that are light, medium and dark. The paper here is white but the layer of color I am going to paint will be the middle tone.

first layer of acrylic ink with water

Because the  first layer of acrylic is going to be your middle tone, you might have to dilute it in a bit of water. You also want to be able to still see your drawing underneath the paint, so it will be easier if that first layer is not too dark.

acrylic ink gestural brushstrokes

Using a large flat brush, paint the first layers of fluid acrylic color in big gestural strokes, you want to cover all or most of the figure but could give that first wash any shape you want to.acrylic ink drips on wet wash

You can also add a few drips here and there if you want to.

add drips to your painting

Once you are done with that first layer of paint and drips, let your paper dry thoroughly before going to the next step.
clear gesso over acrylic ink

Clear gesso is white when wet but will dry clear. When painted over paper it will make it sturdier (especially of your drawing paper is a bit thin) and will also add some tooth that will work great with watercolor crayons and dry pastels.

Paint a thin layer of clear gesso and leave it to dry

Paint a thin layer of clear gesso and leave it to dry. You might see brushstrokes but I would not mind it as I think it is adding an extra dimension to the drawing.

acrylic ink over life drawing

The drawing will look like this at this stage.

white watercolor pencil over clear gesso

The you can start using a white watercolor pencil on the highlights

The you can start using a white watercolor pencil on the highlights

watercolor pencil contour drawing

Some colors on the contours.

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darker colors on the shade areas.

going over watercolor pencil with a wet brush

you can decide to leave the watercolor pencil as is or to go over it with a wet brush.

using a wet brush over the watercolor pencil

When using a wet brush over the watercolor pencil, it will make the colors stand out more.

painting over life drawings

Keep working on your drawing until you are satisfied with the result.

painting with acrylic ink and watercolor crayons over life drawings

The finished drawing.

More Life drawing inspired paintings on my website

 

Painting over Life drawings with Acrylic and Watercolor Pencils
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  • Hi there, I admire your work so much. Always interesting and inspiring to come to your blog. Thank you for sharing your talent. 🙂