Sunday, September 23, 2007

Head Study

This head was painted with thick lead white no. 1 Winsor Newton. I ground the other colors with a heavier proportion of drier, and the end result was that the paint really started to set-up within an hour and was touch dry within 24 hours. The most dominant mark is the highlight on the forehead, which needs some attention because it looks like a bird crapped on his head. I'll probably use titanium which may make a softer transition.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Work In Progress

This is a kimono composition I'm working on.

Thursday, September 13, 2007


Ingres, Portrait of Madame Devaucay, Chantilly
When I see Ingres' work, I realize I need to spend more time on my edges. What kind of brushes did he use?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Golden Ratio ?

I think most painters have a intuitive approach to composition. I explored the golden mean, golden section, and golden ratio in this piece and had some questions while I was doing it. When I swung my arc to get my section and then checked out the numbers with the golden ratio (1.618...), there was a slight disagreement. I was interested in what sizes (in inches) came close to the golden ratio and found that 34"x55", 29"x47", 26"x42", and 13"x21" were very close. I also read somewhere that the average ratio for modern paintings is 1.34, I wonder if standard sizing has had any influence. I think that European or metric standard sizes are closer, and more interesting.
Included is a thumbnail of the painting, worked up. I'll post it at different states.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Pen and Ink

Pen and Ink

Cast versus Academy

Here are two interesting images from the 19th century that perfectly describe an academic approach to the figure. Hippolyte-Jean Flandrin (1809-1864) Standing Male Academy, Facing Left and Pierre- Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) Two Studies of a Plaster Cast, verso and recto show the male figure in both a conceived, structural context and a fully realized, resolved one. Renoir clearly finds large mass relationships, while arranging the geometry with a variety of planes. I think Flandrin is showing off with his perfect placement of the figure. One of an academy's precepts is that the figure touch its vertical or horizontal boundaries and this on does it on two accounts. I enjoy the passage the head makes into the background as well as the calligraphic mark of the soleus.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Cast Personification Examples

Here are a few examples of how Rubens referenced sculpture and made it his own. There is an example of Titian reversing the Laocoon a little and tilting it a bit compared to the original sculpture. The more you are aware of the various archetypes the more you see them. Although Rubens may have been able to do this the most graciously, Picasso was able to pilfer and recycle with tremendous efficiency.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Frontal Lighting

For me, lighting the model from the front is the most challenging. Although there were no large shadow shapes the model's dark features helped with the drawing. The Russian painters of the 19th c. had success with bold lighting situations combined with a cooler palette.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Chapters: Drew Writing

My friend Drew Trudeau helped me conceive and execute this painting. He is a talented writer, musician, and designer
I am currently composing a painting of him and his band The Stick, which may turn out to be at least a triptych.