The making of A Brother's Protection was a family project. The two pictured in this painting are siblings and in fact, they the children of Zola Greene. Zola is a Native American model that travels across the country posing for western artists and photographers like me. I saw Zola's daughter enjoying her feet in the cool water on a hot summer day. We posed her brother behind her and this concept was born. The color, design, drawing and brushwork are based upon an emotional foundation. In this particular artwork, I wanted the peaceful stream to reflect the inner peace of these two close siblings.
After starting with this rough drawing, I sprayed it with workable fixative before I began to use thin oil paint layers over the drawing in the second step of the process. Many of you have expressed interest in my inspiration and the process of making one of my paintings. Many times my approach to a finished artwork is not universal.
In starting the process, I began with a charcoal drawing on a wooden panel I prepared with a white gesso primer. My photographic reference was taken here in Texas near the Brazos River. Above is the drawing made on the board before I sprayed the surface with a workable fixative. The purpose of this step is to keep the charcoal from mixing with the paint that goes over it. The second step below.
I thought it would be good idea to show you my process in the studio. I decided to use a smaller table easel to paint closer to the panel.
Here is another photo of the the painting in-progress. You can even see my palette in this shot. This was a small painting but each painting has its own struggles. I wanted to include a variety of color of the same value to create more interest. I believe the painting comes across better in person than these photos. During the process I wished I started the painting on a larger panel. I enjoyed completing this work and I learned a lot. I hope you enjoy the emotional connection I attempted when I created this artwork.