18×24” 98lb Mix Media Canson paper
When I set out to paint this, I wanted to use all the colors of the rainbow but I wanted to use two colors to make up his face and hair. I did use black a small amount however for the most part I tried to use green as the mid tone and blue as the shadow. While working I realized that the blue could be used to show reflected light as well and so I used that as a key feature of the painting. I especially found this helpful in creating the landscape of the forehead. I often find the forehead to be a tricky thing because it is generally thought of as kinda featureless however if you look closely there are three distinct plains and can have different bumps, dips and curves for every person. Being able to tap so strongly into the reflected light of this painting, I could capture more detail in places such as the forehead, part of the nose and eye that were in the shadow. The two colors compliment each other perfectly on the lips and every time I look at the lips, I feel a sense of satisfaction run over me, and I like how it feels so I keep looking. This portrait shows a torso turned at 45 degrees and then the head is turned to face the shot causing the neck skin to bunch up on one side of the neck and stretch tight on the Adam’s apple. He has a bit of a cleft chin which I like because it gives me another aspect of his character to hone in on. I used reflected light to show the shadowed side of his chin and Adam’s apple. His ear has lots of detail and I got to really demonstrate some new skills I recently picked up in doing a study of the ear. I’m grateful this project could give me an opportunity to try that out. His suit has sharp clean edges which I used a large angled brush for much of and his tie has a tight weave which I executed using watercolor pencils which I then washed over with a wet brush. I used a fan brush on his hair and worked in some white for highlights. Steve Buscemi is an incredibly versatile actor. He has been in a staggering 86 different films at least, ranging from a range of comic relief rolls including several Adam Sandler movies, voice overs such as Boss Baby, Monsters Inc, and the 2006 version of Charlotte’s Web to stronger more dramatic roles such as Fargo, Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, and my personal favorite, Boardwalk Empire where he played Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, a crooked politician/ prohibition era gangster.
I chose Steve Buscemi as my subject because I wanted to share my enthusiasm with the world and honor him with style. Thanks Steve for all the great moments in cinema.