Last year I was asked by Scott the director of the iSSACHAR Center to do a 3′ x 4′ painting for their Soul Music Series. iSSACHAR Center for Urban Leadership is an urban leadership organization that specializes in connecting communities and creating conversations that allow unique groups hear each others thoughts and ideas. An essential portion of the organization is college stipend and housing that we provide for a group of selected college students over a 10-month period.

They are training contemporary leaders… “people of Issachar.” The organization’s name come from the biblical story of King David, the people of Issachar were described as valuable at a critical moment in history because, “they understood the times, and knew what should be done.” – 1 Chronicles 12:32


soul music series-painting

About the Painting

We decided that the painting should be painted on particle board (something more durable than canvas). Scott came up with the concept. I put it into Photoshop and modified it a bit after a few suggestions.

I primed the board using black gesso. Then I drew a 3 inch grid system to insure that I painted it at a proper scale. Using acrylic paint, I began laying out the music nots and the outline of the figures. Once I established the layout, I began to focus on the facial features, touching it up layer by layer.

Below is a partial speed painting of the process.

I am so glad Scott gave me the opportunity to do this. Thanks Scott and Issachar!

Fredrick Douglass

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