This kind of shows the progression of how I do my artwork. I first make a rough pencil sketch with not an over amount of detail. I usually start the pen and ink with the landscaping first since it frames the buildings front and back, and then move on to the windows. I will add a little more pencil detail as I need it, but never put too much on, as I feel it can overwhelm the flow of the portrait. I find that then it can become too harsh and linear and overwhelm softer effect that the color supplies.
As in the pen and ink stage, I like to start with the foliage when I add color – whether it be pastel, colored pencil, or watercolor. I lay appropriate background colors and build from there. Often I will add a little more definition with the ink. Finally, I spray with a permanent fixative. Many artists don’t like to use a fixative, but I do. I love the way the colors all pop and since I have been doing this so many years, I can predict where the color will be deepened and enriched. So pretty and I know the portrait is protected. Hope you like this, too. I do.