One of my current projects is a longterm project. It was originally plotted as an 8' x 8' Grunewald-style crucifixion. The two sketches below (each only a couple of inches big) show the original vision. The center piece (image 1) was the central 8' x 8' focus. But I intended to attach two additional panels - each 4' x 8' - on either side. The panoramic sketch (image 2) shows the complete concept.
This original vision underwent a shift as I tried to address the nudity issue. I did not want to resort to the usual loincloth, so I tried to think of ways to hide the genitals. An idea I began to toy with was having Mary Magdalene, in a moment of rebellion against the humiliation being inflicted on Christ, attempts to cover his genitals (image 3).
This strategy for dealing with the impending nudity resulted in a change of composition. I began to toy with a 3/4 angle. I also began moving toward a more complicated and cluttered composition - much more hustle and bustle (image 4).
After settling on this route I set in on anatomy studies (image 5) and light studies (image 6). The former is just a small sketch, while the latter was a photo shoot with a group of students from Calvin College.
Following the light study, I felt I was in a position to move ahead with the actual painting. Because I was, at the time, in an apartment, I was limited on space. Therefore, rather than moving ahead with the planned 8' x 8' panel, I halved it to a 4' x 4' panel. Images 7 and 8 are shots of the under drawing.