Today I was wanting to finish my first ever self portrait in gouache but it turned out that this was just the beginning half. The focus was going to be on defining the planes of the head clearly, but I lost focus after an hour and decided to continue tomorrow.

Gouache is nice for clear and separated areas of paint kind of like the paint by number sheets that kids do. So my self portrait in gouache was supposed to be a lesson in the planes of the head and I envisioned nice clear planes defined over the head each with their respective general value and color.

James Gurney has a great post about the planes of the head on his blog. I hope to come back to this painting tomorrow and achieve something close to what he has. I think the biggest issue that I’m having here is generalizing the head well, I get too caught up in the details.

My Self Portrait in Gouache Setup

self portrait in gouache with focus on planes of the head


  • Session: 978
  • Work: 830
  • Width: 4"
  • Height: 6"
  • Medium: Gouache
  • Location: Self portrait in apartment
  • Art Time: 1
  • Creative Time:



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Chris Beaven

I am an Artist and a programmer currently living in the amazing state of Washington. I have a passion for art, but I'm stubborn as hell with it. My day is complete only when I do some piece of art each day, no matter how small. "There was a dream that was Rome. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish, it was so fragile."