Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The beauty of speed

The Bride Wore Cowboy Boots
10 x 8
We've had a lovely model in my class for the past few weeks and she surprised us by arriving in her wedding dress.  It was a great choice because it added grace and interest to each of her poses as well as forcing students to deal with a large expanse of white. For a touch of hill-billy chic, she accessorized with cowboy boots.

This painting was one of the 20 minute warm ups that we do at the start of each model class.  It really helps my students loosen up and approach the subsequent long pose with greater focus.  In 20 minutes, you can only think of big shapes, major values, and large gestures; the rest is impossible and, as we repeatedly discover, unnecessary.  We are always delighted by the fresh vigour of these painted sketches when we put them against the wall for a critique and just to admire.

There were a lot of elegant, refined paintings that came out of these weeks with our model, but my heart is still with the dazzling sketches that preceded them.


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