Portrait Underpainting

Well, we're already half-way into the semester now at school and I can still hardly believe it! All the classes are well underway, and we're having midterm critiques this week on some of our projects. In the portrait class that I'm taking, we've now moved from doing small quick portrait studies to more involved formal portraits. I just started working on a larger half-length portrait this past week. I pushed really hard to cover the whole canvas in one session and I ended up with a relatively well-worked out underpainting. Getting the relative value relationships right early on is especially important in this portrait I think, since the set-up consists of a lot of very dark, almost "black" elements--the backdrop is black, and the model is wearing a black dress and a black hat. I can't wait to start working in color on top of it this week!