This portrait of New York and London Mistress Darcy was something of a challenge -it had to be handled tastefully. She counts what is euphemistically called “Water Sports” as one of her specialities and the commissioner wanted a scene depicting this but not crudely rendered. As is usual with much of my work I decided to show the scene by suggestion – the setting makes it clear what is to happen and the fact that this a place which males would use adds a piquant sense of sex reversal. Together with one leg thrust forward in thigh boots, Mistress Darcy looks totally in control – the slave beneath (an approximate portrait of the commissioner ) can only await his fate. Or perhaps she is merely teasing and will simply press the flush?
Portrait of Los Angeles based Mistress Sheri Darling commissioned by one of her devoted admirers. Although the content was a surprise to her, the mistress asked for a theme based around a medieval castle in Transylvania with costumes to match, though with a little modern improvisation too.
It was commissioned by that rare individual – the one who actually paid attention to what his Mistress wants.
While others were giving her what they thought she wanted…chocolates, wine, etc. or were giving her what they wanted…Victoria’s Secret lingerie, crazy high-heels, etc., “frank” listened to his Mistress and understood her hints.
A couple of years ago Mistress Ezada came to London and though we had arranged to meet and see some of the sights, in the event it rained all day and we ended up sitting in cafés. In the course of a far-ranging and remarkably pleasant chat I made two sketches of her.
She expressed her pleasure publicly at receiving these and ‘frank’ used his initiative to commission a full-size watercolour portrait of her as a surprise Christmas present. When he presented it to her the reaction was all he could have hoped.
“In fact her face lit like the sun when she discovered what it was. She studied every detail and wanted to know everything about the creation process. For me it was one of the happiest moments I ever had and I really want to thank you for this.”
Of course that encouraged the two other portraits already featured:-
An initial sketch was made on rough paper then scanned into the computer . I prefer to sketch things out on paper-it is also possible to sketch on the computer using drawing software ( Corel Painter ), but I find I can get better results the conventional way.
On the scanned drawing I experiment digitally with colours and tonal balance. Digital is best here for colour roughs as you can change it so easily. This is printed out and the line-work is transferred down on to thick watercolour paper-(for the geeks this is 300gsm Saunders Waterford HP). Everything is worked out except fine details before the artwork is started. Trying to draw straight on to the paper without planning is asking for trouble.
First lines lightly sketched using diluted black paint. Just as a guide. It will be strengthened later . To the left a sheet of photo references is always to hand.
Now areas of tone start to be blocked in. This need not be too fine as they are going so dark anyway any imperfections can be covered.
More blocking in. The colouring is gradually built up.
At this stage you begin to start balancing all the tones out. I feel that the subject should be glowing so she is the lightest part of the picture. Everything else is dark in comparison to her. This lightness is of course the whiteness of the paper coming through, the unique property of watercolour. Painting white onto watercolour paint is occasionally necessary but is to be avoided as much as possible.
Then you can allow yourself the luxury of cleaning up the details. My basic principle is to work from general to detail. Never to get bogged down in one part at the expense of others. It is very tempting to work up the “interesting bits”- face, etc. and then get depressed looking at all the unpainted background. I feel the best approach is to bring up all the picture together stage by stage.
For the last 5 issues I have been producing sets of four illustrations at a time for a respected Japanese femdom magazine called “Goddess love” Megami-no-ai (女神の愛). I got to know the editor via Twitter. Somehow or other despite speaking different languages we communicated well and have enjoyed a very fruitful relationship. I’ll show some other series later but for now I just wanted to show the most recent – The Alice in Wonderland set. There really was only one Mistress in London to model for this – Alice Malice who feels such an close connection with the book. I approached her last year and she said she’d be delighted to pose. I worked on them all over Christmas. They were in fact a joy to produce as I had such a clear conception of “Femdom Alice”. I looked at the first illustrations by Sir John Tenniel and tried to keep closely to the way he had depicted the story. Rather than any luridly trashy fashion you might find for party wear I wanted her dress to be classic and simple, but added to that short black gloves and ankle boots to give it a kinky powerful edge. Moreover the watercolour style gives it that traditional old-fashioned look. I didn’t know it but this year is the 150th anniversary of the book’s publication so it was an apt choice of subject matter. I hope Lewis Carroll would approve – if not, at least forgive. Really it was just the look I was aiming at, not any reference to the original Alice. So these are the resulting paintings…
One of many initial sketches – planning is very important for watercolour painting as you cannot make changes very easily so for every painting there are lots of initial sketches- most of which are never seen. If you live in Japan you can buy the present issue -No 8 – from Amazon. Sadly the magazine cannot be bought overseas. http://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/product/4776912872
Update May 2016
The “Kinky Alice” look is now a new cosplay! The same magazine has now commissioned a photo-shoot of famous Japanese actress Aoi Shino (碧しの）dressed in similar costume as Femdom Alice. I look forward to seeing the full set in the coming months.
Dominatrix and cosplayer Princess Aurora was also generous enough to give her time and effort to dress as Femdom Alice. She definitely looks the part. Her classic English looks seem to promise a wonderland of naughtiness behind her innocent gaze.
As one last exploration of the Femdom Alice look, I commissioned Restrained Elegance to produce a custom set featuring the stunning model Chloe Toy. This studio’s main emphasis is on bondage but they had just the right setting for what I was imagining and a great portfolio of previous work so I worked out a little plan – in sketches of course – of what I wanted to see.
The pivotal moment comes when Alice, having dressed in gloves and boots from an old chest, admires herself in a mirror and then is sucked into mirror-land, where everything is reversed and she is forced to become a bound barefoot submissive . At that point I let the studio have free rein to photograph however they wished.
I was very pleased with the results. You can buy this set here or join the wonderful member site Restrained Elegance to see this and many other bondage sets.
In a way I was in mirror-land myself. It was great fun for me to be the commissioner for once – as I’m usually on the other end. I’d recommend the process highly, not only for the enjoyment of having your own fantasy brought to life but also because it supports the creative efforts of studios and individual artists.