Esmeralda The Gypsy Dancing, Watercolor

This project started out as a little drawing lesson for young artist, but I got overly involved with it and did this watercolor picture. It is the Gypsy Girl, Esmeralda, from Victor Hugo's classic story, the Hunchback of Notra Dame.

Since I had already composed and drew the picture for a lesson I used a light box and traced the earlier project onto watercolor paper. This was a real time saver, but when I do a project I will often spend days composing it and sketching it over and over until I get it right.

In this case I had already looked at hundreds of pictures of gypsy women and portrayals of Esmeralda.  I tried to combine the popular notion from today's media with historical photos to get a blend that was different yet recognizable as the character.

Esmeralda The Gypsy Girl, Watercolor by Adron


Once I had it sketched I started to layer in the colors beginning with the lighter washes first and then after they dry I went over with the darker values.  I sort-of mix a little of the color on the paper lifting the lights into the top darker ones. I did a lot of dabbing technique in the background but it looked to splotchy and distracting so I did a clear wash over it to smooth the background out.  I had to do a lot of lifting with clear water and tissue to bring up the lights in the clothing.


(c) Adron
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Adron



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