Kevin Lepp Relating How to Paint the Mouth
Kevin Lepp is a graphic artist who also paints in oil. Using a limited palette of white, burnt sienna, two blues, two yellows, cad orange and cad red, he painted a portrait of his 16 month old son from a photograph. He said he sometimes will do a painting using only a couple of brushes which he constantly cleans. The underpainting was done beforehand with diluted paint but during his demo no medium was used with the oils.
After examining his underpainting he made some adjustments with the top of the head. He advised spending 45 minutes to make sure all the facial features are aligned correctly before continuing to paint. The earlier adjustments are made, the easier it is.
As he painted he talked about the difficulty of the eyes, nose and the mouth ("never use a straight line"). Warm tones predominated the face so cool blues and grays were incorporated in the shadows.
As to background, he stressed the importance of keeping it simple so that it doesn't take away from the subject of the portrait.
He was unable to finish the portrait which he doubted he could do in just an hour. But the most important lesson from his demo was to... just get in there and do it! Don't think too much about what to do! And that you will make mistakes. Just get over it and correct it. Fortunately, with oils it is easy to fix. Thanks for revealing your method, Kevin.