Watercolor of a young girl

Painting by Nancy LaneMy friend Thea, age 12 when she modeled for this portrait, is always a delight for me to paint. She lives on a farm full of animals, so when I visit we spend time with  them. As a result, I have several paintings in progress of her and her animal friends. It’s a natural extension of my work as a picture book illustrator — kids and animals.  This particular pose, however, was from a day she sat for my drawing class. She arrived beautifully dressed in white, just the picture of youth and springtime.  I tried to capture that essence with my choice of fresh, clean spring-like hues, as well as a high key palette (i.e. mostly light valued colors).

I began the painting at a demonstration I gave at the Pittsford Art Group a few weeks ago. I find I paint much faster and looser with a crowd watching, for some mysterious reason–probably panic!  During the demo I painted everything but the face and shadows, which I finished at home. Now to come up with a good title!