The portrait has not been going well. For the benefit of anyone interested in the process, I'm posting some of the states below. I'm now on the fourth scrape-it-all-out-and-start-again: the "Better but still no good" painting, which was the latest, is no more. Kaputt.
Some of what I'm struggling with is:
1. The sad grey winter light and the shortness of days.
2. Indecisiveness about what approach I want to take.
3. Tendency to overdo and thus lose something that was going well.
4. Having become used to the speed and ease of digital painting and its marvellous "UNDO" option, unfortunately unavailable in real-life oil painting.
5. The infuriating, seductive, non-user-friendly character of oil paint.
6. An angry nostalgia for bygone years when I was able to toss off a really quite good portrait in a few hours.
7. Bad mood due to all the above plus some extra stuff not worth mentioning.
Okay, I know: Fail again. Fail better.
I'll keep going. A desire to please is the enemy. Must keep that in mind.