“The Phantom” – How To

“The Phantom”


Oil on canvas panel

Before there was Karloff there was the king Lon Chaney Sr. His work still holds up today. Too bad his life was cut short, would have loved to seen what he would have done in the talking era of movies. The makup designs he wore in his film were also created by him. Amazing!

So today I decided to put together a little “How To” of how I do a picture. It may not be the right way but it’s my way. Hope you find it informative.

Step One: Set up your taboret. For this painting I’m using only Ivory Black, Titanium White, Cadmium Red Light and Yellow Ochre. I always use Galkyd as my medium and Alkyd based Titanium white to help with drying time.


Step Two: Quick sketch to lay in a rough road map. Gotta have a place to start even if it’s wrong.


Step Three: Block in dark shapes.


Step Four: Start laying in mid tones. I’ve decided I want a warm light on the right side and a cool light on the left. In order to make it more cool I will place it next to a warm color. I want the flesh to be ashy and very pale but he is still human so I lay in some fleshy color as my mid tone.

Trying to stay loose. Working the mid tones and refining shapes as I go. Not concerned with details yet.


Step Five: Mid tones are looking pretty good so I will start laying in some highlights. Cool on the left, warm on the right.

Also now I start to become more careful about putting a stroke down and not messing with it.


Step Six: Not finished yet but I honestly cant see what is wrong with it anymore so I need to take a break and come back to it in a bit. I find that when I do that it tells me what it needs.


Step Seven: Pretty happy with the results. You have to know when to quit. You can keep noodling on a piece till the cows come home but I’ve achieved what I was going after so I’m calling it done.


Hope this was entertaining and helpful.

Click HERE to check availability and see the gallery of my “Painting A Day” project.


One Response to ““The Phantom” – How To”

  1. Great “how-to”! Makes me miss hanging out you at your SoCal studio.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: