The Jaguar plays an important role for the natural environment and human society. The big cat helps prevent overgrazing of vegetation by keeping its prey populations in balance. They are also important in human culture, frequently playing a central role in stories, songs and prayers of indigenous people. Yet today, jaguars have been almost completely eliminated from the United States. I would like to show my appreciation for an animal that is holds more importance that most people realize and one that is also connected to the city that I have come to love over the years. In the following article, I will be showing the process that I took to complete this painting. Hopefully I am able to convey my thought process to you as if you are in my head during the painting process. In this image, I am at the prepping stage. I have already found the image that I am interested in.
I chose this image for a few reaseons. The expression on the jaguars face is very intense, stern and stoic. These are features that I am really trying to translate well through the color selections. At this point I am not entirely sure how I am going to go about accomplishing this. Nevertheless, the adventure to find it is the fun part.
I have begun blocking in the darks and lights with somewhat of a complimentary color scheme that apposes the background color. This is a good start for me because I don’t normally this exactly like this creating a cooler feeling.
I then decided to go back in with two warmer colors, red and pink, to compliment the cooler greens and blues. This allows me to add some definition to the facial features.
Heres a quick little action shot over on the right, taken by a friend that was visiting me in the studio. Even though I predominately work in isolation (while listening to music, podcasts or the news), I do also enjoy having some company while working and chatting about random topics of interest.
As you can see in this next stage I have included yellow and white on top of the green and pink. I realized that I absolutely hated that decision…it drowns out the eyes and is simply too intense on the right side.
Adjustments must be made…
So, I ended up going back into it with a few different kinds of blues, such as aqua, teal, babyblue and some in betweens. Then, came some gold and silver to tone down the yellow on the right side and give it a unique shine.
I wasn't too pleased with how the bottom was coming out either, it needed something. So I took a very diluted blue that was very watery and made a few quick strokes and let the fluid do the rest, dripping down to anchor the jaguar down better.
The final step was to take my black inked brush pen to it and draw out some spontaneous lines in it in hopes to increase the depth and increase the complexity a bit. Now we have the final product and I can honestly say that I like! They say that you are your hardest critic, which is true. But I really like this one.