Painting the Woman in a Kimono

A day or so ago I uploaded my latest work - "Woman in Kimono' based on Hirezaki Eiho's art work. This piece will be another addition to my Bijin Series which features remixed paintings of beautiful Japanese women.

This time around I was very conscious of trying to document my work flow. 

Here is the very initial pencil sketch: 

I usually have the original by Hirezaki Eiho on my computer screen while I sketch out my version with a mechanical pencil and my trusty eraser putty. 

When I have everything down in pencil, I start erasing to clean up my lines so it's easier later when I trace over it with a pen. 

Lines done with pen

Lines done with pen

Lines are usually done with my pens in size 05 or 03. For her hair and more delicate features like her lips, I use a tiny 005. 

I wasn't sure yet what sort of decoration I wanted on her kimono, so I left it blank and started blocking in the solid colours. 

Here's a sped up video of me working on her hair ornament. 

Next was the circular pattern around her shoulder. 

Then there were the squares to do. I waited for the black to dry before putting down the white squares with the gel pen. It's really interesting that such a simple combination of shapes can create such a unique pattern - and to think it would be on a piece of clothing! 

For the pattern on her kimono, I wanted the same pattern throughout and I wanted to make sure it followed the folds of her sleeves so that it would look very fluid and organic. Which made me think of trees and water. When I was tracing over the falling flower petals, I thought it would be cool if it could look like they were falling over the bark of a tree or a river. And so off I went putting down the long lines by pen. I was emulating rivers and the patterns of tree bark. 

I think in the end, after I colored in her kimono in a pale blue, the pattern gave me the effect that I wanted to see. 

Finally, here is a video of me colouring in her kimono. I was careful to make sure there were subtle but different shades of gray/blue towards her arm and to darken the shadows in the folds of her kimono. 

So there we have it! My first detailed run through (well as much detail as I could at this time anyway) of how I made this particular painting. 

I'm looking to get a proper tripod over the next few weeks, so hopefully I'll have better and more thorough video for my future work. 

Cheers and thanks for stopping by :)