5-Value Head Studyby David R. Darrow
6" x 6" (15.2cm x 15.2cm)
Oil on Panel
SOLD
Collection of Linda Reynolds,
Tampa, FL – USA

About This Painting

The following may only be interesting to other artists. It’s a long-held principle that a good portrait has a reduced set of values. Five values is common among the great painters, especially seen in the work of John Singer Sargent.

I decided to give it a try, and I started by mixing 5 equally-spaced values using a mixing knife and two tubes of oil paint: raw umber and titanium white.

I quickly painted this head study starting with my darkest dark, then filled in the rest where appropriate.

Two values for shadow, and 3 values for the lights. ◙