Portrait of Kassidy | www.JanetArtworks.com | Janet Garcia

Portrait of Kassidy Step by Step

Portrait Tutorial

The following digital painting tutorial was done in Corel Painter IX but the process is the same with newer versions of Painter. It was painted by looking at the reference photo as if the model was sitting in front of me. The result is what spoke to me at the time I painted her.

Took me about 6 hours to complete.

Kassidy’s Portrait Step by Step


Step I: The Muck Up Stage

At this stage, I blocked in some colors for placement of features and color harmony after doing a sketch. (Click on each image to view them at a bigger size.)

Step 2: Blending Stage

At this stage I blended a little the colors placed in step 1, especially on the face since the custom brush I used requires many layers of paint. To blend, I used a stump.


Step 3: Face and Eyes

At this stage I was concentrated on the face, adding bright colors to it without any blending, just mixing with the same custom brush. I created this brush with some impasto, just enough to look natural and let me apply paint over paint while blending at the same time when I apply little pressure to my stylus. When I press harder, the impasto relief is stronger and the paint more opaque. When I apply little pressure, this brush allows me to mix the paint on the canvas with some transparency. Also added some details to the eyes.


Step 4: Hand

At this stage, I was concentrated on her hands and arms applying paint in the same manner as I did for the face, but with less blending, since I want the face to be the focal point.


Step 4a: Comparison Stage

I closely compared my painting with the source image. I always work with both images next to each other as to avoid having to print the source. I have a 21-inch monitor so I can place both images next to each other and keep working just hiding the palettes.

Photograph courtesy of Barb Kermis
Photograph courtesy of Barb Kermis


Step 5: Background and Chair

In this step, I worked on the background so that it would work with the subject. Also worked on the chair a little. I am not going to work too much on the chair since I want the baby’s face to be the focal point.


Step 6: Reshaping the Face

In this step, I was concentrated on the face reshaping her features to achieve likeliness. I blended a little then added more paint.


Step 7: The Hair

In this step I worked the hair adding several tones and/or colors.


Step 8: The Eyes and the Chair

Here I worked on the eyes and the chair. I added some shadows to the chair so that it wouldn’t look so flat but at the same time not too detailed since it is not the focal point.


Step 9: The Nose, Chin, and Shirt

I worked the nose, chin, and shirt and signed the painting to force me to stop.


Face Close Up Shot:


Face Detail Shot:


Hair Detail Shot:


Hand Detail Shot:

I printed this portrait on canvas and mounted it. It’s currently displayed in my home.

I hope that you have enjoyed this demonstration. Feel free to post your comments.

All images are Copyrighted © 2005 Janet M Garcia. All rights reserved.

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One thought on “Portrait of Kassidy Step by Step

  1. The digital tutorial was wonderful. I am a freelance writer, still working in advertising, 74 years old, took several semesters of digital art in recent years. I love what I think of as a blending of sketch, portrait, character study and work on it with the resources of 7 children and 12 grandchilren – soon a first great grandchild. My question is about what sort of printer and printing paper you use for portraits. I bought some Epson Velvet Art Paper and learned too late it won’t work on my HP 4280 inkjet printer.

    I love browsing your website, Wet Canvas posts.

    Marybeth Highton

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