Portrait Painting with Jael O’Connor

I am rather obsessed with portrait painting – I think as a result of spending all those years photographing people at weddings, I just find there’s something so fascinating about making a picture that captures something more that what you see on the surface.  So when I saw that one of my favourite artist Jael O’Connor was running a 10 week course in painting portraits in oils, I had to sign up.   Jael is an incredible artist and teacher – she is patient, encouraging, inspiring – and best of all – she just encourages you to give it a go – to just get the paint down and not overthink it!  It’s really refreshing, being told there’s not a right and wrong way and to enjoy what we’re doing!  We’ve had three weeks so far, held in the lovely Draw studios, and have covered tonal drawing in charcoal, how to sketch in oil with burnt umber, and doing monochromatic portraits.  Next up will be bringing in the colour!!  I’m loving it, and despite my paintings not looking entirely like our beautiful models, I’m really enjoying the process.  We’ve got a little break now as the Draw studio has wisely closed its doors for a few weeks – but I will be practising at home, so watch this space.  And if you want to check out Jael’s beautiful paintings, check out her work at www.jaeloconnor.uk