I find the human figure to be challenging to me, that's why I've been trying to do more of this subject and practice. Lately I've been more interested in capturing the "emotion" while still trying to adhere to the basic principles. My question is...Does this painting stir up enough of a specific feeling to you? And do you have any suggestion to make it stronger?

Thanks so much


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Hi Mark!

I so agree about the human figure being challenging! It can be very rewarding, too. Good for you in tackling your challenges! :)

Hmmm, does this portray an emotion to me.... It's a lovely painting. I especially like your treatment of the foliage. The composition is really nice. The figure as well is nicely done. I have to say, I get a feeling of a pretty girl in a natural setting, but not necessarily an emotion....  Her expression is pretty neutral to me. Not happy, not sad. Maybe thoughtful.

Probably the most straight forward way to portray an emotion is with the expression on the face. But body positioning can be very powerful as well  - as in drooping shoulders for sad, open gestures for happy, that kind of thing.

You can also use overall color to indicate emotions - creating a sort of mood by using cool colors for sad - grieving - lonely, warm colors for happy - energetic - optimistic. That kind of thing.

Conveying emotion is such a challenge, and something we all try to do once we get past the beginning stages of learning to paint I think! You are on the right track!

Here's a challenge to everyone else out there reading this - what do you think? This is the completely subjective side of art, so your skill level isn't a consideration here, so don't be shy! What emotion does this evoke in you?

Thank you very much Karen! These are all valuable tips. I like how you mentioned color, sometimes this one slips by me. I guess that's why the old expression is "why so blue ?" huh?

Exactly! Red with rage. Green with envy... I don't agree with yellow for cowardice though. I think of yellow as a sunny, happy color :)

Hi Mark! As Karen said you are excellent for foliage and also water.

For figures you like very svelte ladies, so much that they aren't realistic. No problem, it's you style (makes me think to Bernard Buffet). But I find something is perhaps wrong with the right arm. I modified the arm with a software. What do you think?


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