What Price Glory?

Thursday, May 7, 2009

I believe this is the only stand-alone painted color study I've done (I've done others, but they were in conjunction with digital studies). I vaguely remember having some oil paint, a tiny scrap of masonite, and big dreams. It was only my second cover for Marvel, so I was still finding my footing. In fact, I remember a kid in our studio (I was still at RISD at the time) watching me paint it. He stared for a long time, then said, "You're really slow." And he was right.

My girlfriend at the time referred to this as the sequined superhero. I don't think I've painted a shiny Cap since. However, this was the first Marvel painting I ever sold, which I remember being pretty excited about.

Anyway, the main reason I wanted to show this was because I didn't use to do color studies, but now it's an integral part of the process (not to mention my favorite part). What started out as a sort of joke — an oil painting executed on a wood block 1.75" x 2.75" x .75" — ended up being very helpful in the long run.

Have a great weekend!


  1. Dear Paolo
    Your site is extraordinary. I love seeing your process. I have not tired Acyrla Gouache. is it a cross between acrylic and Gouache? I mainly use Golden Acrylics. Cheers

  2. Paolo

    Awesome Cap cover, man. What year did you do this one? As an oil painter, I can totally appreciate the comment your schoolmate said to you, some people just don't have the patience for it. Were all of your color studies done traditionally like this when you were still a student?

    I'm thinking of doing a picture of Cap for this group show in July, the theme is Golden Age Comic Heroes, I was wondering if there's any bit of advice or suggestions you might be able to give me before I take a stab at it..anything at all would be amazing. Thanks, man!
    I'll probably see you at Wizard World Philly.


    also, I think it's great that you have that color study framed.. haha, where do you have it put up at?

  3. Great painting.

    It was watching your blog that i decided i should do color studies before painting:


    Thanks for that.

  4. i laughed at "you're really slow."

  5. Looks good man. I should do more color studies. Normally I focus more on value studies.

  6. Heh heh, "Sequined Superhero" conjures up entirely different images in my mind. Your memories from RISD are the best!

  7. Eddy, thanks for visiting. And yes, Acryla Gouache is an acrylic paint that dries to a matte finish, just like gouache.

    Eric, I was a senior when I did this (just shy of 22). As far as I can remember, this was the only color study I ever did in oil. From what I can recall, I started doing digital color studies with Spectacular Spider-Man #14 in 2004. As for the frame, I think I found it in the studio and hot glued it to the block. Now it sits on my computer desk.

    Carlos, nice study. I always find it easier to get down to business when I have some kind of plan.

    Virginia/Mom, you shouldn't laugh at your offspring.

    Alejandro, value studies are great too. The main thing to remember with color studies is that they have a value component as well. In fact, I now start most of my color studies in black and white, adding color later on.


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