The Dead Layer
I’m currently learning how to oil paint like the old flemish painters. This painting is at the second phase of the Flemish technique called the Dead Layer or the Dead Color Layer. This comes after the brown under painting where I used a thin layer of burnt umber. The dead layer is a monotone layer where you work on getting the values right. I’ve been building my dead layer with a combo of burnt umber, white, and Lamp Black. I’ve been mixing it with a medium I made that is 1 part Refined Linseed Oil, 1 part Liquin, and 3 parts Odorless Mineral Spirits. Once the values are correct, I will start adding color. I’m planning on adding silver and gold leaf after this layer, right before I start on the color layer.
Have you ever used this technique before? If so, I would love to hear any tips or tricks you have on the process. It’s been extremely enjoyable so far. Judging color luminance is something I struggle with, so just isolating the light value before working on color made a lot of sense to me.
The character in the painting is from our book series and is named Veeda Elward. Veeda is a character that my friend Codie Young and I came up with. She is going to be a very interesting character. I used Codie as a visual reference for the character. She is wearing a Valentino dress.
Lately, I’ve been oil painting a lot. I have four paintings currently in the dead layer stage, and I will be posting all of them as they evolve. For many years, I’ve been wanting to do my first art show, but never felt like I had a series of originals that I would want to display in a show. Over the last few months, I’ve been working to put together a coherent collection of paintings.
Please Let Me Know What you think
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