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how forest boy came to be

forest boy
forest boy

Here’s the progress of Forest Boy, finished in May 2015. The unframed image is 12″x16″.

(Click any image for a larger view).

figure 1
figure 1

I started off wanting to paint a little boy in the woods. Why are all my figures in the woods? It’s a cool place to be – that’s all you need to know. So I started painting, and after a couple hours of painting I had what you see in figure 1. Your eyes see into my soul, little boy.

figure 2
figure 2

I worked a bit more and painted in his hair (figure 2). All the while I’m trying to figure out who this kid is. He’s not Forest Boy yet. He’s just a kid in the woods. I had kicked around the idea of giving him a fun hat (like Fox Girl), but decided against it.

figure 3
figure 3

I blocked in his cloak and then was working on his face a bit more (made his nose smaller, etc.) and this happened. “This” being those weird, leafy, tattoo-like designs on his face (figure 3). They were just a textural thing at first, but then I thought, “Maybe he got these by living in the woods. Maybe he’s becoming part of the forest somehow.” Kind of creepy and feral, am I right?

figure 4
figure 4

I continued to work on his face, softening edges, messing with light. I also decided to texture up his cloak. Trust me, “texturing up” something is a real thing. I also began to add the background (figure 4).

figure 5
figure 5

I finished the background, becoming, in the process, especially fond of the spooky silhouettes of trees you can see to the right of and just above his head (figure 5).

figure 6
figure 6

And lastly, I added a little acorn to the string of his cloak. Naturally, Forest Boy likes acorns and would put them on his cloak.

forest boy
forest boy

I did some final touches to the forest, added some texture to his shirt, and he’s done!

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