I don't paint as often as I would like, practically never now that I juggle a lot of other more pressing commitments, but its always nice to share with people how I work, everyone has their own way of working/style ans technique.
So to begin with I draw directly on the canvas with a mechanical pencil, then I paint with acrylics onto the canvas (watered down as to have more overall control), I always do an under coat of green, because the one thing i have learn't from studying art my whole life is that our skin colour isn't just one colour it is a mixture of all different colour hues and tones, I find green warms the skin tone (try using a warm green to start off with and layer in the shadow areas). I use System three paint nothing fancy, you can buy the Acrylic sets in any hobby or art store.
Next came the painting of the beard, I do love painting in detail I do love a challenge, I use Daler and Rowney brushes normally, a 2 and 6 round, for the fine detail, (I have a crazy extensive brush collection due to once being a fine art student and having a wonderful second cousin who use to be a well known artist who likes to occasionally send me his antique art bits and bobs) tools are really important for creating a good piece of art work nothing too fancy is needed. It is vital to work on layers and take your time.
Like I spoke about earlier, when it comes to the acrylics, i use a mixture of pound shop quality to rather expensive colours, I personally don't think it matters what you use as long use them properly (well when i say properly i mean don't go crazy with them) there is no right or wrong way to paint. You can lay them on thickly or as thinly as you like, I water mine down a lot so I can get maximum control over the canvas as Acrylic paint drys pretty quickly The way in which I paint with acrylics is pretty similar to how i paint with watercolours, (and stains clothes) layer them up is very important for creating depth. I do often get asked how I paint, and the process in which I use, I've never really been all that confident when it comes to painting onto canvas, I only started to paint onto canvas when I went to uni, because everyone on a fine art course does, I decided to get involved and the evidence is now hanging at home on the walls of our downstairs loo so many canvases!
Lets talk canvases, I don't stretch my own, never really have just due to the fact i'm rather messy and useless when it comes to that. I like to work small, so I go for square or rectangle canvases as I like these best, they come primed ready to paint and you can get these from any hobby/art store.
So the next step was to paint the tattoos on, once again layering the colours up, this is where I get really worried and mess up what I have already completed, I get to excited and go a little over the top I am still yet to learn enough is enough! Take your time when painting if you aren't feeling it step away from the canvas and come back to it a few days later. Have the confidence in your own skills thats whats really important.
I hope this gives you lovely lot an insight into my little working process, I'm not the best at explaining but its always nice to share what I do.