Thursday, February 28, 2013

Miniatures and Why to Copy from a Master

I am in the process of moving my studio from the basement to the upstairs. We are remodeling the basement and it will be a better space with more options if I am not there, I also need better lighting. My new room is small, but it does have excellent lighting and I kind of need a more confined space. I am one of those people who take over as much space is available so I think the trade off will be a more organized life. Maybe I will get the business taxes figured out EARLY this year for a change instead of waiting until the last moment.

I'm not sure if I am responding to my new space by painting smaller but this is what I painted yesterday, A 6" x 6" piece based on a much larger portrait by Nelson Shanks, a well-known portrait artist who has painted presidents and tons of famous people.

It was a challenge to paint this small. Errors are much easier to make because if you're off by a fraction of an inch it looks bad, unlike painting life size where there is a bit of leeway. I did a large portion of this painting with a size 2 round, a much smaller brush than my normal size 6 flat.

So it doesn't look like Nelson's version-- it looks like a person and I learned a bit about mixing skin tones and how to use blues and greens for depth. It's never a bad thing to copy a master's work. And Nelson Shanks is certainly one of the top in his field.

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