It's in the Eyes
I like it when someone makes me think about my process or realise something about how I work...
On Wednesday afternoon last week I was tuned in to a live stream painting session by Liselle-Fae Wildlife Art. She mentioned that an art tutor she had been told about was very persistent that you put in the eyes last so that you get the tonal range right across the picture... to which Liselle said she didn't do that and always paints the eyes first.
Whilst watching, I was working on my Sloth cut after not working on the piece for nearly a year due to getting a bit fed up of it. When hearing Liselle talking about starting with the eyes in her painting I realised that my sloth at that point didn't have his eyes cut in... and I realised that previously I usually started with the eyes too. I'm not sure why my sloth got started differently but I know that now I have started putting his eyes in that I am happier with it and I believe that had I started with the eyes in the first place I would have had a better connection with the piece.
Looking at the eyes in some of my other cuts and isolating them really shows how much character the eyes add to the portrait from the soft puppy dog eyes in my spaniel portrait to the watchful eyes of the tiger. The eyes are a focal point to a portrait and they inspire me to continue with the piece so long as I can see their character in their eyes.