In my second sitting, I begin the initial application of oil color. For the flesh tones, I use a palette of cremnitz white, naples yellow, yellow ochre, raw siena, terra rosa, burnt sienna, transparent oxide red, burnt umber, raw umber, cypress umber, van dyke brown and ivory black. With a palette knife, I like to premix several piles of paint with varying levels of chroma and value. As I paint, I alternatively work from the lights towards the darks and then from the darks towards the lights, always keeping form in mind.
Finally, I glaze over any imperfections in the features and adjust highlights where necessary. I add a bit of detail to the hair and paint in the jacket. Finally, I scumble a cooler tone onto the background to give it a bit of atmosphere. In this final pass, I sometimes apply a small amount of retouch varnish to return the dark tones to their true value because as they dry they sink in. I generally wait 6 months before applying a final varnish to allow the oil paint to chemically dry.
Brendan Johnston will also share insight into his work at both artist talks held at Eleventh Street Arts during the exhibition: Residents. The first is on Wednesday, April 20th from 6-8pm and the second, hosted by Suggested Donation's Ted Minoff and Tony Curanaj, is on Wednesday, May 4th also 6-8pm. These evenings are free and open to the public.