I felt like the reductive start to this painting would have went well if the subject was less detailed or if the canvas was much larger. I just couldn’t get the paper towel to articulate the smallest facets of the figure. So it ended up being a combination of wiping out and brushing in. Also, I had no idea how to compose the painting so that this pose had some sort of emotional appeal. I should have done a couple thumbnails like Jamie suggested.
After the reductive start I began adding paint within the light areas of the figured. I thought it would be easier to start with the lights and leave the under-painting to take care of most of the shadows until I was far along enough to refine them. It worked pretty well. The only problem that I had with the painting was the lighting. The figure was lit well, but I didn’t have any light above my canvas and I was basically painting in the dark. This is why the painting is so bright. I knew that I was unconsciously making the lighter areas too light, so I tried to compensate for it but I didn’t compensate enough. As soon as I viewed the painting in good light, it became super bright and all the colors had overpoweringly high chroma / intensity.
The good thing is that I really enjoyed painting tonight and I have much more motivation to continue with oil for a while. I need to paint more anyway. I want to achieve an ease with painting that only comes with lots of practice and experience.