• Olly Jordan

Chapter 60 - ArchieVerse - Riverdale - The Lodge Princess - 2018

Updated: May 25, 2020

CAMILA MENDES - 'Veronica Lodge' - 31 hours, 76x56cm acrylic painting on 425gsm Bockington Watercolour Paper

Veronica, although she was one of the fastest to paint, she was one of the most difficult to work with. Her skin tones were fine to work with, hair was great because it was just black with a bit of blue in it and then white to capture the shine, the clothes were easy because it is just a simple black dress unlike a pattern like Josie McCoy's animal print dress, or a leather jacket like Jughead Jones', it was her facial features that were hard to work with.

With all paintings where I work with celebrity faces, I collage together a few reference images to create a new photo, as a way to get around copyright issues, but also so I create a whole new image that is exclusive to me. However, I picked a low quality photo for Veronica's face and this made it hard for me to work from facial features like her eyes, lips and even her cheek bone structure. I did not intentionally pick a bad quality reference photo, I think I just saw the potential for how good it could look and set on the idea of it all before actually zooming in on Photoshop to see if I could realistically work from it. I actually ended up leaving the painting and revisiting it months later with fresh eyes to see what could be wrong with it, the revisited version is the final painting you see above. I am happy with Veronica now and I am pretty sure I found a new reference image that was of better quality and at the same angle, so I kind of worked from that to help fix my issues. Below is the 'final' version from before correcting my mistakes when I just had the bad image.

Unfortunately this isn't the only case in this series where I worked from bad quality images, Archie Andrews was a struggle too, but I will discuss him when I get to his blog post. You can probably see a few subtle changes of what I have done to Veronica since the piece above to get the finished painting I am now happy with, but it was something that I just had to leave alone and return to with fresh eyes and a more helpful reference image. I had to change the eye on Veronica's right, her cheekbone structure, lip shape and eyebrows to get the final artwork. The skin tones look different in this, but that was just because of bad photoshop editing on my part.

Other than all of these issues, Veronica would have been great to work with, as mentioned in the beginning of this post, her skin tones were really nice to work with and the hair was great fun, it was just a shame she was such a struggle. I am glad I waited out and returned to correct my mistakes though, as that really helped add her likeness. If I left her as she was, well, if I didn't even like what I made, why should someone want to buy the original painting or a poster design with her on it?

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