Mallina is a lovely model with olive skin, and I really wanted to emphasize her skin tone -- and her cheerful expression. I also wanted to experiment with composition, so I moved her to the right of the picture. (Usually I have the model gazing across empty space.) I struggled with the shape of her shoulders; I probably should have blurred them more than I did here. Also, the likeness is close but not quite there. I needed another couple hours of tweaking to get it right. Still and all, I'm pretty happy with this picture. It captures her good cheer.
When I first started painting, I had little interest in doing portraits. Now I love to do them! If you're interested in sitting for a portrait, please let me know. I'll supply munchies, television, music, or anything else to keep you entertained while I paint you. :)