Advice on finishing my oil painting

Working on my first oil painting in colour where I'm dedicated to seeing how patient I can be with getting it finished.

Back in October '17 I got some advice from people here as I needed advice on my colour palette, this was a great help @BOB73 and @movealonghome :)

I have made progress and am now working on a canvas which is a meter square in size, nice and big. I've got to the point where I need to start thinking of how to finish it, sounds odd but I'm aware that a painting can be over-worked.

You'll see that initially I painted in the detail of the fabric, as I was going to do an exact copy of the photo. But decided afterwards that I prefer the dark background so am considering painting over the fabric I already did.

Also, I think to finish the cat, I just need to now go over him with some gestural brush strokes to indicate the direction of fur, and add details like his whiskers and finess the eyes.

I would very much welcome your thoughts on how you would approach the finishing stages. I'm definitely on a learning curve here.



  • PaulBPaulB mod
    I think the point where cat meets couch is missing some of the darker values.  Look in the photo how the chin and couch are indistinct, and the same dark color.  This occurs on the right cheek, chin and neck.  I think it's important for integrating the two elements.

    I also think the lined texture he is lying on is interesting,and would be nice to add.

    I think you made a good choice about the background, and your approach to suggest fur direction is a good one.
  • Rainey

    Yep, front of face needs more shade value.

    Fabric pattern under cat will help the viewer place the cat in a spatial context.

    Neck a tad shadier too.

    Looking good.


  • edited April 2018
    Nice cat. Beautiful eyes, really well painted. Agree with the above two comments. :)
  • Really appreciate the feedback, I can totally see what you mean when I look again with fresh eyes!

    Think I shall keep going with the fabric texture too.
  • YUP. This is outstanding. great job on eyes (tricky) and fur but don't be afraid to go darker on the shadows as suggested. This will give it more depth and make the little lines of whiskers stand out. I suggested making the couch a solid color to help things go faster and reduce some of the tedium but you did a good job on the back and it  would add interest if you carried it all the way. 
  • @Rainey Painting in the more detailed support cushion as shown in the photo looks to be the remedy here.  What a beautiful painting and a beautiful cat.  Summer
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