I love painting from life, but in an ideal world I would have at least 6 hours (and preferably much more than that) rather than a mere 2 hours or so (of actual painting time) to achieve an alla prima painting. I think that is why a lot of artists choose to draw in this situation because you have time to get the drawing right or work on color - try to do both and you are doomed!
Even the top portrait painters in the world often don't nail the likeness right away. That is what I remind myself so I don't sink into despair and burn down my studio.
I started this painting with a wipe-out and achieved an image that looked somewhat like this handsome young man, but everything was just a little off. Group situations are tough, because you have to squeeze in wherever there is a spot and sometimes you are quite a distance away. I won't even get into my eyesight - I don't want to be classified as a complaining curmudgeon, although I think I am rapidly approaching that status. Just when you start to know what the heck you are doing you start losing your faculties.
I also decided to cool the background, so instead of a warm brown it is now a mauvey grey, which brings forward the warm skin tones of my subject.
So, I ended up reworking the likeness from a photograph after the fact, but something still was not right. I lined up my computer screen with the painting and, from a distance, finally saw that I had his eyes too close together and now, voila, after about 6 hours or work, here is Anton.