I’ve been working on this pet portrait of this little Yorkshire Terrier, Barrington. I am using primarily Prismacolor colored pencils and working on Canson Mi-Teintes paper, the color is called Hemp. I use the Mi-Teintes paper on the smoother side, not the textured side which works better when using pastels.
I always start with the eyes because they’re the most important feature then work to the nose and mouth. Once I have the sparkle in the eyes and the facial features correct, I can start working the rest of the head and body.
Working on the body and all the little strands of fur. I start by adding my white highlights first so I don’t cover over them and then go to the darkest color and place it in the darkest areas of fur. Putting in those values helps me to define the lightest areas and darkest areas of his fur. From there I worked on the gray tones then added the tans and brown. I work one section at a time and then move onto the next section of the fur. For instance, one ear or one leg at a time.
Barrington’s favorite spot is to sit in the laundry basket so that is how his owners wanted me to draw him. I’m working on the background, adding in the different bits of laundry but have to be careful that all the patterns and textures will detract from the dog. When I finish the background I will go back and make adjustments to the fur, especially around the edges. I may need to intensify some colors to bring him forward, and gray some background colors to make background elements sit back.
These are my color notes on the back of the paper. Colors always look different on a colored background than they do on a white background. It helps me to label the ones I plan to use on the fur, some of the browns and tans are so close in value and color that it’s hard to determine which is which just by picking up the pencil.