Dolce: A Portrait of a Young Boy
The Sketch Session
Collecting Reference Material
It is always a challenge to get great reference material for a portrait. With younger children it is also great fun.
The subject of this portrait is an energetic, charming three-year-old boy. This portrait session started out with my subject in a collared shirt sitting on a proper chair with his tongue sticking out of his mouth.
In the next group of photos he retracted his head into his shirt, like a turtle in his shell. This was going to be a bit more challenging then I anticipated.
With patience, distraction, plenty of time and a sense of humor I was able to gather all the needed reference material for this portrait. I took a few photos and then rested for a while. He was more relaxed when not being photographed, as are most people. I spent time just listening and observing while my young subject played. It was a great way to learn about him and help him just be himself.
At some point I asked mom if she had a non collared shirt to prevent the chin from hiding in the collar and to improve comfort. With a new shirt, a comfortable position and a few toys handy my young subject was ready to sit for the quick color sketch. This took about 15 minutes. I did not expect him to sit still and he did not disappoint. The sketch documents color the camera missed. I periodically took photos during the sketch session to capture a more relaxed, natural expression. The photograph that mom felt truly captured his personality was taken during the sketch session.
The photograph that mom felt truly captured his personality was taken during the sketch session.
This photo was taken immediately after the favorite photo. It truly was a memorable and fun session.