PAINT A PORTRAIT IN LIMITED COLOURS

ImagineFX|July 2020

PAINT A PORTRAIT IN LIMITED COLOURS
Tran Nguyen shares her creative process behind The Mauve Girl and elaborates on the steps involved in capturing a female character
Tran Nguyen

This painting was created for Thinkspace Gallery’s 15-year retrospective exhibition. It was an open-themed group show celebrating the gallery’s life, and showcased over 70 new works of art. For my contribution I wanted to focus on my portrait series that I started years ago. The Mauve Girl is my interpretation of the modern Vietnamese woman, painted with acrylic and coloured pencil on wood panel.

The reason I began the series of portrait work was so that I could focus on colour exploration, floral design and the female gaze. For this portrait I wanted to express my heritage by depicting the Vietnamese woman in a non-traditional light. The painting juxtaposes the everyday female in a modern, translucent áo dài dress with lotus flower tattoos and brightly coloured hair. I kept her expression and demeanour soft while contrasting it with the harsh black lines of the tattoos.

Portrait painting is both complex and simple. Because there’s not a lot of components within it, I have to make sure the facial expression and subtleties of her mannerism are handled with care. The better I treat these little nuances, the more of her essence I’m able to capture.

How I create…

A FIGURE IN WATERCOLOUR AND PENCILS

1 Portrait preliminaries

articleRead

You can read up to 3 premium stories before you subscribe to Magzter GOLD

Log in, if you are already a subscriber

GoldLogo

Get unlimited access to thousands of curated premium stories and 5,000+ magazines

READ THE ENTIRE ISSUE

July 2020