I spent an hour or so fixing the figure that I didn’t like and tweaking the composition a bit. The structure of the painting is based on the five pointed pentagram, like the star on American Air Force planes, military helmets and so on. It’s always been held in deep regard by mathematicians because of the ratio 1.62, which is to be found in each of the intersections of the lines joining point to point.
I’ve chosen to place the point of the star on the eye of theÂ girlÂ holdingÂ the bowl, the second pair of points upon the mouths of the kneeling centre couple (one of whom I have yet to draw), and the third pair upon the ears of the lowest pair of characters. To accomplish this I Â moved the arm of the middle ground girl up to place the sword she holds directly upon the composition line, passing a sword to her colleague. I moved her leg over a touch to the right so she feels more grounded, the I worked on the lower half of the kneeling fellow on the right, whose legs were too short. The improvements may seem superficial, but they’re so much easier to make now than later, and I really want the geometry to work in this piece.
In the picture you’ll see my laptop, open with a photo study on the screen. I find this helpful for setting up the drawing in the earliest stages in the making of a painting.