Two pencil sketches with watercolor added. The face is after an exercise by Charles Reid in his book “The Natural Way to Paint,” and is freely adapted. Just added some wash to play after establishing the shadows. The face is not as yellow in the original as it looks here. Has a kind of Frankenstein aspect in the web image.
The lips are for a large painting; I needed full lips, they need to be sensual to fit the motif of the painting. I think I hit the note I was looking for, although it was touch and go. It’s very difficult to paint dark in watercolor, especially deep shadows in skin. I did some reversals in the shadows (lighter instead of darker in the interior). I will have an even darker, richer background in the final. My main objective, other than doing a good pair of lips, was to see about bringing the deep background color into the face without a break, and I think it works here and gives me some hope it will work in the painting as well.
I love this idea of doing studies. I am constantly finding things I did not know, and developing new ways of imaging what I can do in a painting.